Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The Marathon: Part I

I ran my first marathon Sunday. I alternate between thinking that sounds ridiculously grandiose and that it might also sound all too common place. Like, Oprah ran a marathon, anyone can run a marathon! And it's true, anyone can run a marathon! I guess the difference comes in choosing to and in running it well. Or in my case, being conned into it and being very grateful for it.

The Backstory:

Never wanted to run a marathon. Never had run more than 6 miles. Never had trained for anything that I couldn't just go out and do relying on natural athletic ability. But the captains of our marathon club were so damn convincing and enthusiastic that I knew I would regret it if I didn't join and this surely would be the only time I would have such a group to carry me through so much training. So, I signed up, paid my fee, and decided to not really tell anyone until I was sure I could at least manage the double-digits of running...

The Start of training:

"First you think it's crazy, and then you don't think it's crazy, which is crazy. Then you think it's crazy again, then you don't anymore, but then you run it and realize it is crazy." -Erica, our captain, on training for and running a marathon

It started out harmless enough. "Run to a bar! Eat pizza and drink a beer!" Yes please! Even the mileages weren't outrageous for the first few weeks. 5-6 miles for our weekly Wednesday runs seemed innocuous enough until you realized that needed GEAR to go running because it was LESS THAN 10 DEGREES OUT. I don't think I'd ever run in a hat and gloves and wool socks before, and even though those first few minutes are terrifying it does make the winter a lot less intimidating. We also ran some in the blessed warmth of the indoor track, which was great but usually left one hip limping more than the other as you racked up a solid 60 laps in the same direction around that mini loop. It also became apparent through these long runs that I wasn't the only one to fall prey to our captains' siren song. My friend Shetal composed an entire hate email in her head to one of the captains while trudging up a hill at the end of one of our first 6 miles runs. Andrew confessed to me he had no desire to run a marathon and wasn't sure how he'd ended up here either. Annie had to BUY running shoes to start training for the half marathon because she'd never really gone for a run. I swear these captains should start selling ocean front property in Arizona...

1 comment:

  1. You are a rock star! I'm impressed you even got so far as to exercise outside in the vermont winter, for starters... what a champ.