Hi everyone! I’m Alicia Tatone, a first-year Professional Writing student at Champlain College and a co-captain of the XC team. When I’m not running I like to read, write, draw, and take long walks on the beach… wait, nevermind. This isn’t that kind of site. Anyway, I’ll be popping up on here somewhat frequently for the next couple of months, posting updates about my training for the VCM Half Marathon in May. I ran cross country and track all throughout high school, and continuing to do so since coming to Champlain last fall has been wonderful, but this is something entirely new for me. I’ve never considered racing to be my foremost priority as a runner – it’s something I do as a part of my team and to work on improving myself, for sure, but it’s not why I run. I didn’t decide to run this half marathon to finish in first place, to win a medal or a prize (although, admittedly, prizes are pretty cool… I wouldn’t mind winning a pie at some point). Those things matter to some extent, but what matters most to me is challenging myself. I know that I’m capable of running 13.1 miles, and I’m going to prove it to myself. I’m going to do it.
With that said, what I’m setting out to accomplish is easier said than done. Most goals are. There are always obstacles, distractions, something or other that can stand in my way if I let it. That stuff tends to make me a little nervous, as by nature I’m easily distracted. I get excited about something, decide to focus on it, then get excited about another thing and then another thing and then I might lose track of at least one of those super cool things. Thankfully, though, that’s where the Champlain XC Team comes and swoops in to my rescue. Having a team full of awesome people, all set on achieving similar goals, is so helpful when trying to accomplish something. Running with a few other people, or even just one other person to keep you company, is exponentially better than running alone. It’s always nice to have someone to share conversation (or perhaps misery, if you’re running hills or some other particularly gruesome workout) with. That, along with having a training plan that spans from the time I go back to school after winter break right up until the race in May, is how I know I’ll stick with what I set out to do. Having the sort of support system that a team provides is pretty awesome. Also, pasta parties. Pasta parties are awesome too.