I run not to get away, but to get through.
I run not to become out of breath, but to gain breath.
I run to be social and I run for solitude.
I run to connect and I run to disconnect.
I run not to avoid work, but to inspire work.
I run to feel empowered and I run to remind myself that I am still weak.
I run to meditate and I run to ruminate.
I run not to lose weight, but to gain balance.
I run because it is what I do.
Because I run, I can be who I am.
And that is why I run.
And tomorrow, I will run 26.2 miles. I ran my first race, a half marathon, just three years ago. I was weak and skinny. I made it through by mental determination alone. I didn’t let the body know that it couldn’t make it. I’m in a very different place now. I have trained for months and dialed my nutrition in. I’m ready. That first race was run to prove to myself that I could make it through seemingly insurmountable odds as I faced the legal process of the divorce and the struggle to find myself among the debris left behind. This race will be run to remind myself of how far I have come and to celebrate the journey.
The miles feel shorter now. What seemed impossible three years ago is now quite probable. My challenge this time is to release expectations, enjoy rather than endure, and simply be in each mile. I placed myself in a slower corral so that I am forced to start slowly and be aware of my surroundings. I’m looking forward to hearing the bands (not too much country, please!!!!) and meeting new friends along the way. I’m excited about spending time in a beautiful city with my boyfriend and meeting up with an old friend.
My dad sent me a wonderful, encouraging email yesterday reminding me that this marathon is nothing compared to the theoretical ones I have already run and that victory lies not in the timing chip but in the wealth of friends and family. Thanks, dad, for the reminder. I might need it at mile 22!