Good afternoon, we have officially arrived at spring here in Reno!
So my marathon came and went, and what an experience it was!! Three days later and I’m already itching to get back into my training regime, but will probably start off easy with swimming and biking first. The adrenaline high is finally starting to settle down (now that it’s Wednesday) and my nutritional habits have returned to somewhat normal levels (basically I’m back to eating 5 times a day). Now that I have had some time for reflection on my experiences, I figured that my epic venture into the world of marathoning would serve as great inspiration for a blog or two…or three. So without further ado, 6 reasons why a marathon will change your life.
- You actually ran 26.2 miles – I don’t know about you, but I only know a handful of people who have ever run a full marathon. It’s just bloody impressive to tell people that yea, you’re one of “those people” who did the whole thing, and lived to tell about it! For some, it may be a lifelong goal to finish and for others it may be a bump in the road.
- Dedication – You are either very, very dedicated or there is something dreadfully wrong with you to be able to finish a race that long. In short term sense, I’ve only been training specifically for this race for about 5 months. However, my training really takes me all the way back to 2007 when I first started my training for triathlon. As veterans of multisport will know, your training is not limited to a single 7 month season. Each year you build on your skills and speed from the previous, making you faster and better from year to year. Setting aside a huge amount of time to prepare for a marathon will absolutely help you in time management in other areas of your life. How are you going to run for 218 minutes without setting the time apart to prepare?
- Guts – You have to have guts if you’re going to tough it out for a gut-busting 26 miles. It is not for the faint of heart, and by strapping on your running shoes and firing up your iPod, you’re proving to the world that you’ve got what it takes.
- Accomplishment – I had no clue what I was getting myself into on the morning of May 1st, but by 9:58 AM I was a very different person. Yes, I was still Russell Aaron, but I had met an accomplishment that had only seemed like a fleeting dream not too long ago. Climbing the mountain was only the beginning, as I know have my sights set on Lake Stevens in August, but I proved to myself that it is a feat quite within my reach.
- Iron will – The word “fun” would not typically be associated with running an obscene amount of miles for kicks. However, all of the pain and sweat from training was totally worth the exhilaration and excitement of racing that far. You take the good days with the bad, and often have to make lemonade out of crushed jalapeno mixed with a dash of knee pain and some sweet foot blisters. A marathon is no different, and you do what you can with what you are dealt.
- Courage to keep going – It would be easier for all of us if we bailed whenever life got a little tough, but it is the truly courageous who keep pressing on in the face of uncertainty and pain. Frankly, miles 20 and beyond just freaking suck, but would you rather absorb the pain and finish or bail because it’s easier? A marathon gives you an excellent method for finding your courage to keep going in the face of adversity.
Few events in my life have given me the confidence boost that completing this marathon did (especially with posting a sweet time), and I look forward to further adventures in the future. What have you participated in that changed your life?