Monday, May 07, 2012

In the Long Run: The First Marathon.

I'm sure that my dredging up of personal Marathon history isn't going to be as exciting as Triple T's - did you know she just completed her 1st Marathon? You can read all about it here.

I ran my first - and so far only - Marathon on October 11th, 2009.

Looking back, I had no idea what I was doing or what I was getting myself into. I just photocopied a program from Runner's World magazine, stuck it on the fridge and started running. After each training run, I'd check it off with a marker and just do what the paper told me.

I ran a 3:28:20.

The Runner I am now gazes back on the Runner I was then and shakes his head in amazement.

Poor form, bad stride, shitty hydration, and the belief that "stretching" was code for Gay Porn and to be avoided at all costs. All things considered, I shouldn't have done as well as I did.

What I had going for me was ignorance and speed.

Fast forward to almost 3 years later - I've had injuries, gained weight, got better, lost weight, and found running again. I think I appreciate what I accomplished more now than I did at the time.

Sure, I was proud of what I had done, but it wasn't until I had lost what I had and got it back again that I came to that realization.

I had ran 26.2 miles.

That's a accomplishment that not everyone can attest to. Oh yeah - go to a running club and it seems like every single person has done one or more, but go out to a random person on the street and see what they say when you ask them if they've ran one.

Everyone who completes a Marathon is amazing, but there are the two groups that blow me away: The Elites because they are so blazingly fast, and the people who are out there for over 6 hours because they just won't quit.

If you told me that I had to train harder to improve my time, I'd jump at the challenge in a heartbeat. If you told me that no matter how hard I tried, I'd be out there for over 5 hours, I'd rethink the whole idea.

Both of those groups deserve the praise they get.

In celebrating Triple T's finish, I realize how much I can't wait to start training for my Full in October. The scary thing is, I'm looking forward to the training almost as much as the run.

In honor of Triple T's 1st Marathon - I decided the least I could do today was run half of what she did. Doing anything less than 13.1 when she just did 26.2 doesn't seem fair. So I busted out a nice slow 1:53:09 Half Marathon distance, and contemplated where I've come from and where I'm going in regards to running.

As I've learned in this collaboration between the two of us, one thing is clear: While the finish is important, it's the training, the work, and the journey to get there that can be the most fulfilling.

Congratulations Triple T - You can now add "Marathoner" to all the other titles you have: Wife, Mother, Blogger, Friend.

You wear it well.


Like I said at the start - Check out Triple T's Race Report here.


  1. :)

    Seriously ... we need to do one together.

    Hint: Chicago is totally flat. And no moose/elk.

    1. Chicago is on the list - right behind Victoria and Boston. The lack of elk will be disappointing, but welcome.