“There will be days you don’t think you can run a marathon.
There will be a lifetime of knowing you have.”
Life post marathon has been slightly less than riveting. I have been experiencing what some (including Adam) have dubbed post marathon ick. My body has developed a cross between mono and the flu with the result being pure general discomfort, associated nausea, and exhaustion despite sleeping most hours of the day. Yesterday, I didn’t even feel well enough to check my email (gasp!) let alone blog. Luckily, I think I am on the mend.
I have still not had my post marathon epiphany. I think it’s because I didn’t feel like I conquered the distance the way I did with the half. I knew I could have run it better- especially if I had stretched my IT bands better the week before. The back- to-back boot camp sessions the Monday before definitely left my legs fatigued, but I can still say I don’t regret having done it. It was great mental prep, and I was still able to finish.
That being said, I am already trying to sort out what marathon to run next. Initially, I didn’t want to ever think about pursuing that type of torture again. Through more than half of the run, I was telling Adam it was my first and last. However, just a couple days out from finishing, I have noticed that I’m not sore. The only thing that bothered me afterward was my IT bands- which are already much better thanks to my trusty foam roller. This absolutely tells me I could have run harder.
Despite not having a major life changing moment, actually completing a marathon has dramatically changed my perspective on a few things. First and foremost, it has lit a fire under my you-know-what. Initially, I viewed the marathon as an end point. It was my last big goal before some much need rest. However, now that I did it (and know I can do better) I am already scheming for my next big race. I knew I would want another challenge, but never imagined it would be another marathon- not in a million years. Instead of being an endpoint, my first marathon has become a spring-board to a world of endless possibilities. After all, even though it may have been torture for 5 hrs, it didn’t kill me. Truthfully, it didn’t even make me that sore. I was in far worse shape post 1000 rep boot camp than I was after the marathon, so why not keep at it?
It took 26.2 miles to make me realize and appreciate just how driven I am. I made it through 5+ hours of absolute suck- in spite of the pain, tears, and exhaustion. I set a goal that took months of dedication and training to achieve, and I accomplished it. Sure, it wasn’t my best running day- but I have my whole life ahead of me. Even Adam took over 5 hrs to finish his first marathon. I wanted to make a difference, and I did. I raised money and awareness for a cause I believe in, and that makes finishing so much more meaningful. I don’t know that I could have pushed myself as hard as I did if I wasn’t constantly reminding myself of the physical and emotional anguish that the victims of domestic violence endure on a daily basis. My discomfort during the race was nothing in comparison to what these women go through; and it was a small price to pay to show them I care. That is why I plan on continuing to run in honor of victims of abuse and continuing the Running for the Color Purple Campaign. 🙂