Don’t let that last post fool you. I don’t suffer from lack of confidence. In fact, just this weekend, I was back out there bullying the neighborhood toddlers and, literally, taking candy from a baby. Goo goo ga ga. YOINK! No more candy. Scream all you want but until you develop the motor skills to power yourself across the room, you ain’t getting’ your candy back. Damn bald turtles is what they are.
I think some may have been confused about whether or not I thought it was worth while to even run the marathons. Let me answer that as clearly as possible:
Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes.
And nothing emphasizes the affirmative like increasing font size and rainbow colors.
PR or no Pr. BQ or no BQ. The marathon is the most rewarding of all the race distances I have run. You can’t skip out on the training and just hope to gut it through. You can “gut” through an extra mile or two in a shorter race but try doing that with an extra 10 miles. Uh, yeah, we’ll see you sometime later in the afternoon.
When you cross the finish line, there is a rush like no other. You are part of the club. And not the lame Dungeons and Dragons “club” you were vice president of in seventh grade. No, this is a cool club that doesn’t have you dressing up as a “wizard” or casting spells on “mutant dwarves”.*
If you are an aspiring first time marathoner, I highly recommend running a large marathon first. Big crowds. Big expo. Big excitement. It really adds to the drama as you head down that last .2 miles to the finish amidst a throng of screaming, Nitmos-adoring people.
Friday’s post found me ruminating on that point I reach in all of my races where I need to decide to go for that BIG ALL IMPORTANT GOAL or simply run out the race. Make no mistake, either way I usually have a smile on my face – sometimes concealed by a calve cramp grimace – and dreaming of lollipops, cotton candy clouds, and unicorns. I’m not going to lie, when it gets tough, sometimes I feel like clubbing the unicorn with the lollipop before strangling it to death with the rainbow and concealing the body under the cotton candy cloud. But those are only temporary dark moments.
Last weekend’s long run ended in dehydrated disaster. I blamed this on the fact that I left for the run at 11 AM in 85 degree heat. So I learned, right? What time did I take off this Sunday? 11 AM!! My mom didn’t raise too many idiot kids. Fortunately, it was 70 degrees with a cool breeze. I extended this run from 16 to 17 miles on the fly as it was going so well.
I probably could have kept that pace for about another two miles before balling up on the sidewalk in the fetal position sucking my thumb.
Next week, my first twenty miler. My last five long runs have been 15, 17, 16, 18, and 17. It’s time to kick it up a notch.
I’ve been reading all about this new fangled idea to raise your legs over your head up against a wall or something post-run to get the bad toxins out of the muscles. I tried this. My left foot immediately cramped up forming a “c”. Or, at least, a lower case printed “r”. My kids found it hilarious. Thanks New Fangled Science! I enjoyed that post run shooting pain in the foot. Are these the same folks that came out with the idea to bleed the illness out of people three hundred years ago?
I’m going to keep my feet on the ground next time. And my head in the cotton candy clouds.
* For the record, I was not part of a D & D club. Though, considering I was dateless and sporting my share of acne, it might have been a step up on the social ladder for me.