I’ve been over the top excited, not nervous in the slightest, for this marathon all week long. I huffed and puffed over the 4 page journal article review, and super duper long motor behavior exam that were giant buzz kills to my excitement this week. I know, how dare I actually work for my degree, right? I kid I kid. I rambled on and on to multiple people, including two professors, about my upcoming marathon maniac attempts. I giggled today when a third professor (who is going to kick butt this weekend) said “pre-race” instead of “pre-test” in lecture today. You know where her mind is.
Sat around, pondering how excited I was to have a women’s fit marathon shirt for once when….
it hit me. The nerves. The realization. Holy crap, I’m running a MARATHON on Saturday. 26.2 miles is a long way to run. Did I just hear my quads cry?
Reminds me of that one time, when I had a baby. You know, the oldest. The pregnancy was incredibly uncomfortable, the labor long, the birth painful, the recovery even more painful, the first few sleepless months the hardest thing I’ve ever done. But then, a wave of amnesia spread over me and I decided, “hey, babies rock, pregnancy is so beautiful, let’s do that again!”. And next thing you know, I was waddling around the playground chasing an almost 2 year old in the 100 degree Myrtle Beach summer sun, an extra 50+ lbs of pregnancy in my gut and butt, people gushing “you must be ready to pop ANY DAY NOW!” and me, using all of my inner strength to not strangle them while screaming “I’M NOT DUE FOR THREE MORE MONTHS!!!!”. Heh. See, I DIDN’T forget the second time, that’s for sure.
But back to the topic on hand: I’m about 33 hours away from the starting line of marathon #5. I’ve mentioned it a gazillion times on this blog already, but lets recap: Marathon #1, Marine Corps, 2007, not so bad. 4:37:00. Didn’t train very well, but, I survived. Marathon #2, 3, 4…not so good. Not good at all. We will leave it at that.
But just like that baby amnesia, it seems for the most part, I have blocked out the bad times…the every mile porta-potty stops in Baltimore, the feeling like it would be easier to run down the hills BACKWARDS and total mental breakdown at beach to battleship. Nope, when I think of marathon running, I think of medals and gloating to myself “yeah, I can’t climb these stairs or sit down on the toilet, but whatever, I just finished a MARATHON!!!” the next day.
I am incredibly guilty of “not respecting the distance” when it comes to marathons in the past. Old habits are hard to break, but I think the fact that I’m sitting here realizing how much this is going to hurt means I’m making steps in the right direction. My training still isn’t perfect, not close to it, but I’ve got a few more eggs in my basket this time around. While not nearly the total mileage I should have at this point, I have had relatively consistant, though not on schedule, double digit long runs. A 19+ miler two weeks ago. I’ve got that crazy nutrition thing figured out (all hail the running buffet!) . I’ve been strength training. Plyometrics. Squats, wall sits, and lunges out the wazoo. Nothing on my body hurts right now (well, other than my brain, that motor behavior exam was killer!) I workout 5 days a week, every week, for months now. Sure, it’s not always running, but it’s always something. That has to put me in a better situation than that one time, when I toed the starting line of the Disney World Marathon a few years back, having not done anything (and I mean ANYTHING) resembling running in over three months. Right? RIGHT??
At the end of the day, only one thing mattersI love running. I really, really do, whether I run 2 miles a week or 35. I love this weekend, it’s one of my most favorite, most anticipated weekends of the year. This will be year # 7 that my sister has come down for this race. 5.5 years of racing here and 8 races (counting some 5k’s and bike rides that weekend thrown in there) under our belts (don’t forget the snow last year, that’s the half-half). Family, friends, and running. AND….beautiful, sunny, 50-60 degree marathon weather, 70 for the rest of the day. (Take that all of you MBMarathon haters. See, the snow was a freak incident!)
I feel so blessed to have running in my life. I know it sounds cheesy, but I don’t know what I’d do without it. So, PR or slowest marathon to date…as my friends Fergie Ferg and will-i-am said, I’ve got a feeling…that
tonight’s Saturday’s gonna be a good good night day…
Have a great weekend my friends! Five miles or fifty, and everything in between..LOVE your run!