Monday, November 21, 2011

Short Cuts

I wasn't struck down with the Post Marathon Blues this year.

In truth I think I was so devastated by how the race went that my depression started at mile 17.5 of the race, and had a chance to fully burn off by about 3 days after.  That's not to say that I am not still a little sad about how things turned out... but on the other hand, how could I possibly be sad about the marathon?  It was a beautiful day, 100 of my friends ran it, the people I love finished strong and all are healthy & whole.

I ran alone today.  It was ~savor~.

But it wasn't easy.  I didn't bother looking at my watch, I just ran.  in the dark.  I was meeting some friends about 45 minutes into my run, and I contemplated cutting my mileage short to make sure I had time to get there.  Instead I just picked up the pace.

If I cut the mileage, I would have known.  It would have bugged me all day.  I *should've* run the rest would play in my brain.  And then there would be guilt.  Ah, guilt.  How I loathe thee.  What runner doesn't suffer from some kind of guilt now and again?

Of course, we've all heard of the runner blogger who skims a few miles off her marathon ever year.  I don't really know why she does it.  It makes me sad because in all truth, she's a lovely girl.  Super nice, and full of the qualities we all enjoy in a friend.  The last time I saw her though, I thought she looked a little guilt ridden. Her eyes looked haunted, and she seemed fake.

I wish I'd had the guts to pull her aside and say, we like you.  You're a great girl.  You're too fabulous for words and not because you raise money for (insert charity here), but because you are fun, and funny, and deep down inside I know you have a good heart.  You're going to be a success at whatever you do...  so if you don't want to run the whole 26.2 miles, then don't.  But don't register for it either.

I wish I'd said that because I know what it's like to pine for a short cut so you can get your goal.  Oh, I admit - I thought about it.  I know Richmond like the back of my hand.  At any point I could have made a turn, a cut, a loop, and boom - I could have "run" a brag worthy marathon time.  I would have surely done a sub 4.  Hell, probably could've eked out a BQ in all that.

Of course I didn't do that.

Not because someone might have seen me and asked.  Because that's so unimportant.  I would have known.  I would have seen me.  And at the end of the day, I am the only one who matters to me.  My 4:26:and change isn't brag worthy, but I own that time.  I have to, it's mine.

And maybe that's where my redemption for Richmond marathon will be found too.



Jen said...

EXCELLENT post! 4:26 is brag worthy... I still haven't gotten that.

I love that you are right. I love that you are honest... and girl... if you ever see a flaw like that in me... please pull me aside. It is good friends that do that out of LOVE, not hate... not spite.

bobbi said...


(can't wait til that 4:26 is MINE :) )

MCM Mama said...

I don't get why anyone would want to cut it short and still claim to run a marathon. And the day I run sub 4:30, I'll be shouting about it all over the internet LOL.

Jessica (Pace of Me) said...

really great post. and i agree with the other comments - 4:26 IS something to be proud of. i love the whole idea of "ownership" - no matter how it goes down it is your story and your accomplishment. all of my marathons have their own story and i am proud of each of them for different reasons. it is not about the time on the clock - when it comes down to it it's about the journey, the fight and the perseverance...and so much more, of course.

Katie said...

Great post! I cannot imagine cutting a course . . . I ran a half marathon this weekend and my Garmin read 12.71 miles at the finish line (as did most people's Garmins) and even though it was not my fault that the course was not a full 13.1 . . . everyone who asks what my time was, I tell them and then follow it up with, "But the course was short". I do not think I could even tell people I ran a marathon if I cut the course.

Pam said...

First of all, 4:26 is TOTALLY brag worthy.

And second... cheating a marathon... WHO DOES THAT???? It's so stupid and pointless. I couldn't sleep at night.