What were you doing one year ago today? Do you remember? I do. I was waking up very early in an over-priced hotel in Nashville so that I could put on some short shorts and run 26.2 miles. Yep. One year ago today, I completed my first marathon.
I hope to some day try it again. I performed very poorly, compared to what I expected. I had run 20 miles three weeks before and hadn’t stopped to walk but through my water breaks. I didn’t start to get blisters until mile 18. So, these two things made me pretty optimistic that I’d run the majority of the distance if not all of it.
But, something about the roads in Nashville or the mood of my feet had me working on my first blisters at mile THREE. By the time I crossed the finish like, I had walked almost 10 miles of the 26 (if not more) and had at least one spot on each foot with THREE layers of blisters that had popped and reformed. It was AWESOME.
I do blame a lot of that on the fact that I was unable to really commit to the training program. If I were to tell people thinking about training for a marathon anything it would be: Prepare your family and make sure everyone is okay with you being gone a lot. I did not, so I just missed a lot of the training runs. Having a small child who was still nursing made it harder for me to make all of my runs as did having a husband and a son who also needed me. I just didn’t commit 100% since we were also trying to have a baby at the same time. It’s hard to motivate yourself to ditch your family four-five nights a week when you might end up being pregnant and not even run the marathon.
But – I would also tell everyone who is reading this that if I can do it, anyone can. I am not a runner. I am not even an athlete. I learned to enjoy my long runs because they made me very proud, but you can ask anyone who has seen me run. I actually walk faster. However – with the right program, your body learns to do more and more as the weeks pass and before you know it – your running double digits and freaking out about it.
I think the half-marathon is the distance for me. For now. I won’t train for another marathon until I’m done having kids and the ones I have are all at least potty trained. Until then, I want to try to at least run one half-marathon a year. Because that’s also a distance I feel proud about, but not one that takes me away from my family an unreasonable amount of time.
So, I look back today and feel proud. I crossed the finish line. Maybe in the bottom .000009 percent of the group with only a handful of people behind me – but I finished. And I’m proud every time I see that medal hanging on my china cabinet.
Funny thing is? If you look at me walking to my car this afternoon, you would see me walking just as oddly as I was a year ago. But this time it’s the pregnancy waddle, and not the blisters-on-my-feet or can’t-bend-my-knees walk. Either way – just as attractive.