I know I’ve used this quote in a previous blog but now I’m looking at it from another perspective. I’m injured. A fracture in my tibia finally manifested itself after nearly a year of stops and starts of training. So I’m out for about 3 months; maybe less, maybe more. I can do a lot of other types of exercise including cycling, swimming, weight lifting (a little limited; no jumping) but to a marathon runner, this can really take the wind out of our sails.
To you and me, the (marathon) runner, it’s rarely about “I’ve got to go for a run to work off that milkshake.” It’s more about craving the hard work on the track or during tempo run or just the runner’s high itself. It’s a passion and fire that burns from within and when that passion is put to the test of a marathon it takes everything you know to be right and true and blows it out of the water. You put in countless hours of training, rest, and eating just for this one day. You’ve taught your body to perform so you can reach your goal. So you go thru the motions on race day, start out at a certain, easy pace. You hydrate and take supplements as planned. Say “hi” to your mom as you pass her at mile 15 feeling awesome.
Then it starts to happen, your nagging injury starts to tug, your hips get tired, your upper body starts to curl forward and soon everything else starts to go downhill. Before you know it, you’re somewhere between mile 20 and 24 and you’ve got nothing left physically. Your body said, “Peace out” and left your mind to fend for itself.
At first you say to yourself, “Ok, I can handle this, just a few miles left.” You start to trot along…for about five really long minutes. Then everything just hurts including your brain. The self talk is now more along the lines of, “What the heck? I trained all that time just for this?! What is this overweight jerk doing running ahead of me? I’m fitter and faster than that person!?! Who are these people saying ‘You’re almost there! You look strong!’ They don’t know what they’re talking about…they should get in this race and see how they like it when someone says that to them! (And last but not least) “!%*?!&*!@%!!!!!!!!” (BLEEEEEEP).
Somewhere from very deep within (and also the lady holding the sign that says, “DIG DEEP.”) the conversation slowly turns to “I got this! I can’t let others down. ‘Pain is temporary; Quitting is forever.’ I’ve raced in worse conditions; barefoot in the snow (just kidding, I hope).”
One step turns into many steps and those turn into a mile, then two miles. The world starts to look brighter. Your family, friends and/or cheering section is telling you how proud they are of you just by smiling in your direction. You can actually see the final turn toward the finish line. As the finish line comes into view, your body feels as if it is rising from the ashes and you pull every fiber of your being together and will yourself across that finish line.
As you take your medal and the generous volunteer takes off your chip, you think to yourself, “Whoa…How did that happen?….Magic.”
Marathon magic is a gift because it changes who you are spiritually, physically and mentally. Your life is never the same.
My life has never been the same since I crossed the finish line of my first marathon. Now, push myself to the limits every time…especially when it hurts. During this healing stage of my injury, I am taking that marathon magic and turning it into a plethora of “firsts.” Focusing on what I can do and not what I think I ‘can’t do.’ Like learning to ride a bike! Aka cycling, swimming – entering swim races, training with weights in a way that makes you cry; starting a coaching business, learning to become a better coach, friend, sister, daughter…Living Life. All of this because of a little thing I call Marathon Magic.
A quick shout out to my fantastic friends who have taken on the challenge of the marathon and completed their first one this year (or will complete their first one). You are strong and beautiful and now you know that no one can take that from you!
My plans are to heal and slowly get back into my running life as a more complete and balanced athlete. I start training for 2012 Boston marathon the end of December … I can hardly wait!
Life is so much better when you live it! Be bold…Live Life!
Tags: coaching, fitness, injury, marathon, running
I’m Coach Tara and I want to help you reach your running and fitness goals! I customize your training plans to fit your life and so you can reach your goal! I take the time to get to know you and any restrictions you have so I can build your plan accordingly. If you are in need of a coach and/or a training plan for an upcoming race of any distance, please feel free to contact me at email@example.com
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Be bold! Live Life!
Tags: coach, fitness, food, healthy, marathon, running