Going from 1/2 marathon distance to full marathon distance with sensibility and sanity - my running journey, part 1

So I've finally taken the leap. The race registration is paid, the hotel is booked and I've posted it on social media so it's REALLY official now. I am going to run a marathon. October 21, 2018. Detroit Michigan.  42.2km . A distance I have to admit that never called out to me. I don't have romanticized visions of this distance, rather I've been content for several years to run halfs and run them decently fast for my age. I am a masters runner and proud to be one... however after my last 1/2 marathon when I was able to once again run a sub-2  half marathon at 1:56:01 with crazy GI distress, in humid, drizzling conditions,  something changed. Somehow deep inside I knew I needed to challenge myself further. I felt the compelling need to go big, not to win, but to show myself I can do it. To take the next step and put in the time, training and  discipline and go for the full marathon.

I like to think I have a solid base of running going into this challenge, which I believe is a crucial part of making this leap successfully and with sustainability.  I've been racing 1/2's for almost 3 years and have run a sub-2hr half  three times in the past year. I've managed to stay injury free for the past 2 years and I know my body well - what I can handle and what I cannot. I also have realistic expectations for myself as a 41 year old first time marathoner. I want "to finish in the upright position, with a smile on my face, wanting to do it again" ( Jeff Galloway).

So, my journey begins..... I am right now 13 weeks out from the Detroit Free-Press International Marathon and will chronicle my journey to share with you and hopefully inspire other women masters runners to try the distance in a safe, enjoyable and sustainable way.