By HPRS Staff Columnist Christopher Mellott
I stand on the precipice of the unknown. I am stepping out of my known ability, out of my comfort zone and exploring the true ability of my mind and body. The unknown is not an uncharted planet in a galaxy far far away. The unknown is my first 50 mile race. The unknown is the miles after 31.
50 miles is a long way to travel. I am simultaneously terrified and excited. My emotions alternate with ever lungful of air. My heart palpitates with every thought of my next adventure. I am an explorer testing the unknown boundaries of my soul. I am terrified to once again go into the unknown. My heart is set on the adventure. I cannot retreat to where I once stood. I have changed and so once again I must go into the unknown. I must don the armor of my training and marshall my strength to dismantle the doubt that threatens to corrupt my morale. I once again must venture into the unknown in hopes of reaching the next pinnacle of my best self.
I have trained for my upcoming leap into the unknown. I have been preparing my body for the voyage for the last four and half months. There is something intensely satisfying about trying to reach your full potential and not sure if you will make it. The risk of “failure” makes the possibility of success that much sweeter. I have no idea how my body will handle an additional 19 miles. I have no idea how I will handle the first 31. Will it be like my first 50K where I was confident I could finish but left feeling like I had more, or will it be like my second 50K, a disappointment after feeling stronger than ever. I also have the risk of ending my running streak even if I complete the race. Will I be ravaged by the course and unable to run a mile the following day? The opportunity to explore the unknown is not without risks.
I am tempted to hedge my bets. Go out slower and more conservative and aim to just finish. Advice that has been given to me more than once, however I will not. I will race, I will attempt to arrive at the finish line with nothing left to give, content in the fact that I gave it my all.
All I know is that the clock will not stop, I have trained for this race. I am prepared and I am ready to fight. I have no idea what will happen, but I once again am ready to step into the unknown and unshackle myself from the comfort zone.