"I didn't need to know that I could run 100 miles before tackling the century distance; I needed only the courage to do it."
- Elinor Fish, former editor, Trail Runner Magazine (March 2011)
Courage is an interesting trait. Some challenges go unmet because they hold no interest. Some people realize they are ill equipped to meet the challenge. And others still lack the courage to rise up and confront the task before them. I lack courage.
Running one hundred miles may seem insane. Some may consider it dangerous. One might even say foolish. You may even say while it not for you, there is a certain amount of admiration for those runners that do tackle the longest of endurance races.
I will contend that courage is the life preserver that carries you to "certainty. Once you met the challenge courage is not longer as important as regular training and nutrition. Courage helps you to face the unknown.
Fear used to enter my mind when considering "the marathon". I shed that fear.
The idea going beyond 26.2 miles left me uncertain. After last night's 50k trainer, I realize I am capable of more. Fifty miles appears within my grasp.
I will need courage going to Port Gamble in nineteen days. Courage will maintain my calm. Courage will keep my gaze steady. Courage will keep my stride fluid.
But my trust that my need for courage will be temporary. I am looking to replace courage with certainty.