Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Monumental Marathon: Seventh Heaven

Hometown running friends plus dear friend Jessica from Boston strike a pose before the race.

Caught up with Claudia too.  Had to capture a picture of her pre-race because she is so speedy!

My marathon running partner Nicole and I snapped a picture seconds away from the start.  Going through my mind at this time, "What was I thinking signing up for a marathon!"

We did it!  Marathon #7 done.  Nicole and Jessica rocked the race with PRs and Boston Qualifiers!  I was 7 seconds off a PR, but did get a Boston Qualifying time for 2017.

This picture made us laugh.  We asked this guy to snap our picture.  He jumped into our photo and gave the camera to someone else.  We were a bit confused.  Turns out he is a local sports reporter who assumed we wanted a photo with him.  We had no idea who he was:)

Showered and changed.  We went out to eat to refuel.

Celebratory dinner!

And the refueling continued.  Nothing packs the pounds back on like cake.  Worth every mile run to eat these beauties!

The best word to describe this cake: super sized!

The lady next to us at the cake place was a news reporter.  We shared out story about the picture with the sports reporter.  She laughed and said we should get a picture with her.

Heaven on Earth!

This was part of the race route.  It's a tree constructed entirely of toys.  Amazing!

Post race, we enjoyed time touring around Indianapolis and visiting other friends.

Our visit with sweet Mica was truly a treat.

Just like old times.

When you give birth to your first baby, friends and family members celebrate with gusto.  They want to hear every detail.  They gush over photos.  I've noticed this enthusiastic reception to the news of the birth of a child decreases with the addition of each subsequent child.

The same goes for marathons.

When I ran my first marathon, my family members treated it a bit like graduating from college.  I was doing something monumental.  They relished the stories and bragged to friends.  They developed a picture of my crossing the finish line and enclosed in under glass.  They stood on the race route clutching signs.

Six marathons later, the reception to my race is quite different.
On Saturday, I ran the Monumental Marathon.  It's my seventh marathon to date.  While my family was proud, the whole "marathon thing" has become a bit commonplace to them.

When I returned from the marathon, Connor asked where I had been.  (Hmm...I was wearing a race number, my clothes were sweaty, and a medal slung around my neck.)

"I ran a marathon this morning," I replied.

Connor paused and said, "Oh, I thought it was tomorrow."

He treated the news as if I just ran out for a Starbucks. 

As for my husband.  He texted me while I was at mile 15 to ask where something could be found within the house.

Little busy here honey, I thought.  I decided not to write him back for fear that my response would not be very kind.  (What's that expression:  If you can't text anything nice, don't text anything at all.)

My brother called me during mile 20.

I picked up the call.

"What are you doing," Matt asked.

In between labored breaths, I replied, "Oh, just running a marathon."  

I could almost here the "You still doing that crazy stuff" sort of reception to his response.

"Give me some encouragement," I begged.

Matt laughed, "Just 40 miles left to go."


But we parents know that although second, third, and (more) children may not receive the fanfare the first child earned, that doesn't mean the subsequent children are any less special.

My seventh marathon was just as special as the first.  And like a parent learns more as they become more experienced, I've grown in my marathon knowledge with each race.

This marathon was the one that gave me confidence.  It's the first marathon where I've run a consistent race over the course of 26.2 miles (no drastic time fluctuations).  This is the marathon where I savored each mile and enjoyed the process.

This is the marathon I ran not for the fanfare, but the pure love of running.

It didn't disappoint.

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