About four months ago, I was sitting in my room in Jamestown, North Dakota thinking about how dumb it is that marathons are always in the morning. I’m not really a morning person, and I am REALLY not a morning workout person. I was a fitness instructor for the last four years and some of the classes I taught didn’t even start until 8:30pm. After 6pm was when the gym was always busiest anyway, so clearly I wasn’t alone in my preference.
As with everything today, this thought about marathons had barely come to mind and I was already typing “night marathons” into Google. The first result? “Bilbao Night Marathon.” Woah, wait, WHAT? So the place that I was going to be moving to in a couple of months has exactly what I was looking for? This seemed a little bit too good to be true. I looked into it, and within a few minutes I had registered for the half-marathon (medio-maratón) and totally stoked. I can’t believe the day is finally here!
My “training schedule” has been so all-over-the-place that it’s laughable by any conventional standards. And you know what? I’m totally okay with that.
Throughout the summer, I tried to shoot for one short, fast run (~3 mi, pushing my speed the whole time) and one longer run (6-9 miles, easy pace) each week. Since I arrived in Spain 3.5 weeks ago, I have only gone for 4 runs, the longest being just over 5 miles. So that’s it. I haven’t run more than a 9-miler since my last half-marathon in Fargo last May. That does make me a little nervous, but there’s no sense in worrying about it now.
My total mileage covered on foot since I moved back here is, however, more than what I would cover if I was going for runs on a more regular basis. I estimate that I walk between 3 and 7 miles each day, just in my commute to work and errand-running. My leg muscles have definitely not been dormant 🙂
There are 3,700 people total registered for the full marathon, half-marathon, and 7.5 K “pirate race” (why pirate? not a clue.) Of the 3,700, only 700 are women!!! The number surprised me, but when I think about it I never, ever see girls out for runs here. Occasionally I’ve seen a girl running WITH a dude, but that’s it. It’s just not a thing here. In any case, it will be interesting to be one of the females representing a mere 18% of the total participants!
Everyone has their own theories on how to train and prepare for a race, but perhaps the most important thing is having a positive and confident attitude. I have no idea how I’m going to perform tonight, but I know that I am practically giddy that I’m about to run through the streets of my favorite city with 3,700 other people while the lively people of Bilbao flock the streets to cheer us on.
I hadn’t watched this video since that day four months ago when I found out about the race, but I just watched it again and now my heart is pounding. Watch it from 1:00 to the end. YOU might even get pumped up.
Aupa! To the streets!