A week ago today, I was running the marathon. I’ve spent a lot of the past seven days thinking about the event and what the whole journey means to me.
This marathon means more to me that the two I ran and one I trained for back in my 20s. Why? Because this one was harder, all the way around – harder to train for, harder to run, harder to recover from.
The last time I trained for a marathon, I was 29 and child-free. I was able to go to running workouts in the evenings and run before or after work without a problem. On Saturdays I’d meet up with the crew and go running for hours. Afterwards, we’d have a leisurely breakfast, and then I’d go home for a long nap. By the time B got home from coaching Saturday diving practice, I’d be rested and ready to go. It was easy-peasy.
This time around, however, I couldn’t go to evening workouts because I had to take Ella to climbing practice. During the week, if I didn’t get out the door by 5:45 am, I didn’t get to run. On Saturdays I’d have to start my long runs at 5:00 or 5:30 so that I could finish and get home in time to take Lily to ballet class. There was no time for breakfast with friends and a nap afterwards. Finding time to run was as much of a challenge as the actual running was.
I’ve had many people tell me that they are proud of me, and my response is always “Thank you. I’m proud of me, too.” And I am. I pulled off training for a marathon (albeit a slow one) while managing kids, a husband and working. That’s no mean feat.
Friends – and my husband – have asked if I want to do the NYC Marathon again. Immediately after the race, my answer was no. I’d done it and fulfilled my dream. No need to do it again. But now? I want to do it again. Now that I know what to expect, I know I can do better. Plus I won’t be starting from scratch with training. But I’m holding off on putting my name in the lottery – for now. There are a lot of great marathons in Texas that don’t involve leaving home for a week, as nice as it was to do that. If I decide to train for another marathon, and I think I will, I’ll pick one that’s closer to home.
And now for some pictures, courtesy of Brightroom.com.
Me on the bridge. The hat was a freebie from Dunkin’ Donuts, and I loved it. Unfortunately, I dropped it somewhere along the course.
I have no idea what mile mark this was taken at, but it was obviously early in the race.
Not feeling so good at this point. I think this is in Central Park.
Finished! I’m the sunglasses-wearing speck beneath the lion on the banner. In the top right of the picture you can see the Chilean runner and his entourage.
I was crying and laughing at the same time. One friend said I looked delirious, and I think that’s a pretty accurate description.