My CI last year was a 50K in October. I ended up with a stress fracture in July and by the time I healed I didn't have time to finish training for the 50K. Bummer. SO I thought about making my 2014 CI the same race, but it seems a little lame. Also, there's been a voice in the back of my head (probably Eric's!) telling me that I haven't truly declared a Cool Impossible. See, the whole time I was planning my 50K training, I didn't have doubts of finishing. I'm a finisher- come hell or high water, I finish something I start. In the 9th grade I stupidly decided to play basketball. My coach, probably based on pity, let me on the team. I am a horrible basketball player. I played a total of 2 minutes the WHOLE SEASON!! Needless to say, I cried most nights on my way home, frustrated that I sucked so bad and it seemed no matter how hard I tried and how much I practiced I couldn't get any better. It tore my mother up to watch me go through this and for the first time ever, she gave me permission to quit. Of course, I stubbornly refused to quit and stuck it out until the end. But I learned a lot about myself that season. That no matter how much something sucked, I could finish something I started. My first week long backpacking trip was the same- I had brought an ill-fitting pair of boots and 2 days in I sat down on the trail, in tears, swearing that I couldn't hike another step in those boots. My dad said if we could make it to the next road crossing, he'd call my mom to come pick us up. I refused to go home early. I took my boots off, put my Chacos on, and finished the trip. I estimate I hiked about 100 miles in those sandals!
Sorry, I think I've veered a bit from my original thought...It has taken me until today to wrap my head around what a true CI is. And it scares the hell out of me. I don't like to be outside of my comfort zone. But I get it- that's Eric's point. We grow when we do something we thought we couldn't.
It gives me butterflies in my stomach now when I think about my CI. Because I know I need to choose something that will challenge me. I will definitely do at least one 50K in 2014, but I no longer see it as my CI. I'm nervously researching 50-milers near me (in NC). I can't even believe I just typed that, because when I first told people I was going to run a 50K, people would hear me wrong and say, "50 miles!!!" And I'd say, "No, 50 kilometers...50 miles would be crazy!" Ha! By a weird coincidence I read a quote yesterday that said, "If people think you're crazy you might be on the verge of greatness." So how does that work if I think I'm crazy?