It just doesn’t seem as big of a deal as I would expect….as people led me to believe. Calling a big ole bullshit on Susan here:
I thought I’d be bawling crossing that finish line. But I shed a couple tears and was happy and was on my way. I cried more when I first arrived to Paris and saw where the start would be then when I actually crossed the finish. I certainly cried more in any given day when I thought about the race (prior to and during training) then when I crossed the finish. I thought I’d feel…different? I thought my life would be forever changed. I thought I would be forever changed. But I don’t really feel any different. I’m not sure what it is. Did I put too much emphasis on this race? Did I think it would make my life better? Solve my problems? Give me purpose?
I mean don’t get me wrong- I am super proud of myself. I did things I thought impossible (more than just actually running the marathon, but the training, being dedicated, keeping with something when it was hard, hurting, and down right sucked.)
E says I have a problem setting too high expectations and so that nothing can ever live up to them. Normally that’s pretty accurate. Although I set crazy high expectations about my wedding day and that really knocked it out of the park. And marathon’s day just about as epic as my wedding day…so I thought it would deliver. Maybe it will…..maybe it will take some time though.
I don’t have any regrets though….when I think about my “wall” (which wasn’t as dramatic as I thought it would be), I did have to dig deep…and I definitely feel (if I really look back and consider it all) that I left it all on the course. I don’t think I finished with more to give in the tank. I finished on empty and I’m happy with that.
With that being said, I’m quite confident I could do loads better. I think if I weighed less and had an overall improved fitness I’d be better off. And more than anything, I think if I wasn’t injured I would do loads better. So maybe the fact that I was injured has left me feeling this way. Yes, I gave it my all on April 12….but I feel sort of cheated because if I hadn’t been injured (pretty out of my control) I would have been able to give more.
I’m trying to stay positive though. I accomplished a huge feat. I stuck with something despite being injured and (physically) not really made for running. Despite never running more than 16 miles- I didn’t really hit a wall until 23 miles. I never stopped to walk. I set a goal and stuck with months of hard work to accomplish it. I pushed past pain. I ran 26.2 freaking miles.
I knew going into this I wouldn’t be a one and done marathoner. I think you have to run one to see what your up against, to get a baseline, and to learn all about the process. I definitely want to run NYC, but I’m almost positive I will wait until 2016. I also really want to run Chicago at some point, but that point might not be until I’m 40. I would like to have a better training cycle without injury and give NYC 2016 my best, and then I think I’ll be happy. If at some point (perhaps after kids or when I’m at a different place in my life) I want to run another, I think it would be beneficial on a different level.
But I just can’t get behind running a yearly marathon unless every year I’m in a much different physical and psychological place. I think in the next year I have loads of room to grow and better myself, so I want to do that. But I don’t really get signing up for the same torture year after year, without seeing the potential to do better.
So what’s looming ahead on running front: recovery, losing weight, lifting weight, getting faster, and in better shape. I got through my first race post marathon (see here), but am feeling a little a lost/unmotivated/sad. I don’t know how or where to jump start into those plans and if I don’t have a very clear goal, I have a hard time staying motivated. I’m looking forward to scheduling some scenic Scotland races (looking at the Aviemore Half and the Fare Challenge’s 5K) and some hikes. Also I’d really like to up my spin game and get back into practicing meditation and some light yoga. I think I’m finding it extra difficult in the moment because there is so much going on with moving, traveling, and guests. I’m not really having any specific routine until September….it’s going to make it tough.