I've made all my work deadlines! So this is exactly how I'm feeling.
Actually because it's been a tiring couple of weeks, I can't quite summon up the energy to be that excited so it's probably more like this.
Now that my work is at a much more manageable level I can start to focus on some things that I've been trying to ignore for the past month. Things like races. And the fact that they're starting to get really close.
I have a love-hate relationship with races. I love entering them, I love the idea of being a runner who races and I love finishing them. But I hate anticipating them. And sometimes I hate doing them - especially about three quarters of the way through pretty much any race I've ever entered.
A couple of weeks before a race I start to get a bit anxious. The thought that a race is looming makes my stomach clench and my legs go weak. And I can't even tell you why.
I'm not scared of the running part. I know that how I perform doesn't matter to anyone but me so if my time's not great it's really no big deal. I know I can finish the race. I've never not finished. And even if I get injured or sick and have to pull out, the world won't stop turning.
So why do I get nervous?
And, more importantly, how do I stop it?
I've been trying to work on some techniques that the psychologist gave me last year when I was having anxiety issues. I've been practising punctuating the day with deep breathing exercises that help me stay in the moment. I've been doing my yoga and that really helps.
I like to pretend that I'm really this flexible
But really I look a lot more like this
And I've been visualising every part of race day - from the getting up part to the finishing. The thing that I've realised is that it's the getting there and toileting things that worry me the most so I'm working on visualising short toilet queues and trouble free trips to the start line.
I've found out I'm not alone with my worries and this makes me feel better. It's nice to know that other people are just as crazy. Even the best runner in our squad worries about exactly the same things. But because she's an amazing runner there's the added pressure of performing. At least I don't have that.
So when are my races? I have one on the 12th of May - just a 4.5k that I'm doing with my youngest and his girlfriend. And the next weekend I'll be travelling to Sydney to run the Sydney Morning Herald Half Marathon with my eldest son. Did I ever mention that I'm not a big fan of planes?
My goals for these races are simple. I want to make it to the start line with my nerves under control (and without use of any drugs). I want to enjoy the event and the atmosphere. I'd like to try to run under 5 min pace for the 4.5k but have no expectations for the half. I entered a little late and could only get into the slowest start group so I know there's going to be a lot of traffic to get through. I'd like to go under two hours but that'll depend on how much dodging and weaving I have to do.
But if, by some strange miracle, I find myself in the lead coming up the home straight and some Kenyan dude tries to pass me I'm so going to do this ...
Does anyone have any great nerve-calming techniques that they're happy to share?