The truth is, running that marathon was one of the most enjoyable things I’ve ever done.
It was, at least, until Mile 21. Prior to Mile 21, I was feeling so groovy–hopped up on endorphinnies, no doubt–that I very nearly texted my wonderful friends who would be waiting at Mile 23 the following:
I’m going soooo fast. Feeling soooo good. You might miss me. I think I’m ahead of schedule.
Then I thought better.
The truth is, running that marathon was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done.
I told myself, no, honey, don’t text your friends that you’re sooooo ahead of schedule. These I-think-I’m-so-fast-right-now blatherings may not be real.
Everyone says there is a wall. Even if you didn’t hit it in that 23 mile training run. You’ll find it.
Just keep going. And furthermore, keep smiling, too, it makes you a better runner.
I will say. The proverbial “wall” felt something a little like the following:
What I Learned About “The Wall” in My 1st Marathon
1. It will spring on you like a tiger. A tiger in the night. Who may, or may not be wearing a funny costume. With a very dry mouth.
2. It is not nearly as pretty as a tiger.
3. Your legs will feel as if you are carrying a Steinway piano on your back.
4. You will begin to feel as if you could eat the entire In-n-Out Burger Drive-thru complex. Red awnings, burgers, concrete and all.
5. Your brain might turn mushy. As in, you may not be able to think-straight. As in, you may not be able to contemplate your next logical meal.
6. You will, invariably, be tempted to walk as much as possible.
7. Having friends to cheer you on whilst facing this tiger of a wall is absolutely, positively, so important.
I did finish my first marathon, and I did enjoy every last voice memo that friends and family sent me. (The winner might’ve been my awesome 18 year old brother, who sent me a freestyle rap he laid down just for me.)
I did finish smiling. I did finish in around 5.5 hours. I also finished feeling as if I’d nearly lost my brain for the last 5 miles.
I can’t wait to run another one, now that I know what to expect.
See you on November 3rd for marathon #2.
I’m still training with my awesome distance training partner, Suzanne. Here we are with our race medals from this last season.
Crazy to think I only ran my first half marathon last May.
If I can do it, I promise you…you can. Slow and steady wins the race. I’ve read the story and the tortoise always beats the hare, baby. Every dang time.
p.s. Here’s photo proof that I smiled through at least part of that tiger wall. This was Mile 23. [Photo cred: Sarah Painter.]