Health & Fitness.

10. Freakin’. Days.

Until I run 26.2 miles. I can not believe it. The last half of my training has gone poorly – so I’m sure it will be a painful run – but 10 days from now, I’ll have run a damn marathon.

When I registered I checked several boxes to order “Finisher’s Merchandise” so that no matter what the weather, I’d always have something with the word “marathon” on it to wear. I assumed they’d give it to me the night before the marathon at the expo. I was wrong. They mailed it to me last week.

The tops are stacked up on the floor in my bedroom and every time I walk past I feel sick. I know I’ll finish, but I’m still worried I won’t finish in time. It took me almost 4.5 hours to run 17 miles last week. The time limit on the marathon is 7 hours. What if I’m still a few miles away at the 7 hour mark? How awful would that be! Well – I’d still finish. Even if it killed me, but it would be sad not to get a medal.

10 days. 10 days until I do something I would have never in a million years dreamed possible. I’m so nervous I feel like crying sometimes. More nervous than my wedding day. I’m terrified and excited and happy and overwhelmed. It looks like my brother is going to run the last six miles with me, and my Dad may run the last 3. Or at least walk with me since I’m not sure I will be running at that point. Either way – they’ll all be at the finish line waiting for me, which is why I chose Nashville over New Orleans. I want my family to see me do the impossible. And they, more than anyone else, know how big of a deal this is for me. They know how lazy and anti-exercise I really am. Having them cheering me on, even if it’s hour 8, will make the pain the hours before worth it.

10 days.

22 thoughts on “10. Freakin’. Days.”

  1. You can do it! I don’t even know you (well, except that of course, I feel like I know you from reading your blog) and I’m proud of you for even trying. I can’t imagine how proud your family is! As a fellow couch potato, I know my family would just fall out if I said I was going to run down to the end of the block, much less a marathon. I can’t imagine running 1 mile, much less 17 or 26. That’s awesome. You rock!

    As a suggestion, maybe your brother could get a box of Krispy Kremes and run just ahead of you the last few miles so you have some extreme motivation to finish…

  2. Zoot, you are so totally going to kick that marathon’s ass! I am so proud of you! Can’t wait to hear all about it!

  3. Zoot, honey, you will do great. I have tears stinging my eyes because I’m so excited for you. This is an incredible accomplishment and I know you will finish and you and your family will be so proud of you!

  4. I read your blog often, but this is my first time commenting. You will do great! The determination it took you to train at all and run your long runs means you have the determination to finish this race. You’re right, you might not meet whatever goal you set for yourself and you might finish walking, but it’s not any less of an accomplishment. You will finish and it will one of the most awesome, and yet most painful things you will ever experience. I ran a marathon with TNT after my grandmother was diagnosed with Leukemia. I really didn’t exercise much before then, just felt drawn to do it. I remember walking the last 4 miles crying. It really was an intensely emotional experience, plus by that time you are exhausted! I know how nervous you must be, but you’ll be great. Be proud today that you can even fathom running 26.2 miles. Good luck!

  5. Wow! I had no idea you were doing this! I am in awe of you, and I would love to be able to get in shape to do marathon. You will do great — and a what a cool idea having your family there at the end with you.

  6. Miss Zoot – I’m delurking to tell you that you can do it. How do I know? Because I completed the NY marathon 3 years ago. After my husband signed me up without telling me. Seriously, I’m sitting at work and I get an email “Congratulations! You’ve been accepted into the New York Marathon.” I was all WTF and rather determined NOT to do it (mainly because I had never, ever run anything before other than to the beer store), but my husband persuaded me it would be fun. Here’s the deal. It was fun. In a perverse kind of way. But it was not easy. And 26.2 miles is a long, long way. Don’t let anyone tell you the miles will fly by. Because they won’t. You need to be prepared for it to be long. But you have to believe you will finish. And you will. I too had some challenges at the end of my training but you know what? I crossed the finish line in 6 hours and 12 minutes. And I managed to at least jog the majority of the course. And they gave me a little medal. Now my husband is training for an ironman triathlon. Me? I’m training to be an ironfan!

  7. Oh Zoot, you’ll do GREAT! I ran the Nashville half-marathon last year and you will not believe how many people are there to cheer you on. It’s a great race and you’ve been working so very hard. You’ve got a great foundation. And the energy of the crowds and the music every other block, not to mention your personal support crew – really, I can’t imagine you won’t just fly through with all of that. I wish you the very best! Thank you for sharing your journey with us. You are inspiring!!!

  8. you can TOTALLY do it. i did Honolulu back in ’99. very hard, but well worth it. i signed up because a runner friend of mine wanted a partner. guess who backed out?
    they say marathoners always want to get right on their next one, after their first “finish”. i’m here to say, “They lied”.
    you’ll have the rubber legs when you finish, but that’s to be expected. but honestly, there’s nothing like it! knowing you just finished running/walking 26.2 miles! the accomplishment! you will always be able to say, “I did a marathon”. and THAT, my friend, is totally worth it!

    p.s. bonus that you already got your FINISH merchandise! we had to take our certificate to the store to get our stuff.

  9. You’ll be fine, and you’ll do great!! 😀 Don’t psyche yourself out, be confident about your ability to endure. You are a SUCCESS.

    I laughed a little when I saw the title to this entry…today is also 10 Freakin’ Days away from my birthday… 😉

  10. Obviously, I don’t know you other than through your blog (which I read and refresh several times a day!)… but I’m proud of you! Unlike some of us (me!) who claim that “someday” they’ll run a marathon, you’re actually going to do it. And you’ll finish. And it will feel fantastic. And we’ll all be cheering you on via your comments section! Go Zoot Go!

  11. Well, you might be cutting the time limit close. But seriously? So what! You will finish, and no matter what your time, that is a huge accomplishment. My coach likes to tell us that we are training for something that less than 1% of the population even attempts.

    Finishing is finishing. You’re going to rock it. And we will be proud.

  12. YOU CAN DO IIIITTTTT! Seriosuly. Don’t stress over it, get a good night’s sleep before the run, and just do it for yourself! don’t worry about times – just be proud of yourself for making it to this point!!!

    My mom ran the Baltimore Marathon a few years ago – it took her 8.5 hours, and the “time limit” had lapsed, but she still received a certificate of acheivement and most of all the satisfaction of being able to say she ran and completed a marathon. That in itself is the best reward. I can’t wait till I can one day say I willfully chose to run/walk 26+ miles.

  13. You can do it! And just think, when it is done you may never have to do it again because you would have done it. It is like Mt. Everest, it would be nice to climb it over and over but after the first time you really don’t need to. 🙂 Very proud of you, keep up the good work!

    Good luck! And have Mr. Z use this on you after your race. I love this blog by Mindy Ephron from The Office:

    PS- love g. Reader and it is all because of you! Thanks!

  14. Seven hours is slower than 15-minute miles. Don’t worry about the time limit, you did that pace in a training run in non-ideal conditions. You’re tapering now, right? You’ll be fine. Just don’t go out fast, you’ll probably be full of energy from the taper and you’ll need to go slow the first few miles.

  15. Hey Zoot – good luck from a native Nashvillian! I tell myself every year that I’m going to try the marathon and your story has definitely inspired me. Hopefully I’ll be out there next year!

  16. You. So. Totally rock. and in celebration I will be spending my birthday on the couch watching Harry Potter while you run your marathon….

  17. I’m checking in to pile on and say GO ZOOT!!!!

    Also, to tell you to drop by the One More Mile folk’s table and tell them hi. If you mention that goofy blogger guy in Texas mentioned them they might even remember me (I’ve ordered enough “stuff”)

    I’m planning to run a half this summer / fall; maybe we can find a race together? Something to think about during your little jog this weekend.

    GO ZOOT!!!

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