Originally written after October 2014 Marine Corps Marathon/Wicked 10k Weekend
About 6 years ago my friend bet me I couldn't run a marathon, specifically the Marine Corps Marathon. And 3 years ago I showed up to run my first Team Hoyt race.
Countless races and dozens of marathons later I can't think of a better way to spend my anniversary weekend than doing what I love with the people I love. All because decades ago Rick and Dick Hoyt lined up at the MCM to qualify for Boston.Things I learned...
I fill out a male sailor's uniform better than any female Marine uniform.
The world is small and random and the connections you make, the friendships you cultivate have infinite power over where you end up, what you do, who you become.
Some of those people you connect with are just plain amazing. When you meet these people, you just want to be in their presence. You don't need to speak or do anything, you just want to be with them.
Mashed potatoes, red wine, and 15yr scotch seem to be the right combo for a pre-race meal.
Whirlwind weekends are stressful, but when conquered, and you collapse into a bed or bath or floor, you just feel amazing. Like you're the luckiest person in the world to have the problem of too many people to see in a world of too many things to do. Like procrastination, I've resigned myself to the fact that I'm always going to over book. I'm going to be on a tight schedule, and generally going to be stressed...at least I'm not bored.
Sometimes things just line up. Metros come on time, people are efficient, things go as planned. We never hear about these times. I've got to be better at noticing these times, and appreciating them.
Jenny Rainey is one of my favorite running partners. The girl just gets me. We're motivated by the same things, know each other's paces and looks and dark places. We make each other better. We didn't even touch the iPods.
Running at it's core is selfish. And that's ok. Runners at mile 25 are so inside their own heads, fighting their own battles, concerned about their own finishing that they often fail to see or hear what's going on around them....to include chicks with a hot pink racing chair screaming "WHEELS." And that's ok, running puts you inside yourself and you gotta go there sometimes. You need to know yourself before you can ever expect to find a place in the world. And when you get good at this running thing you effortlessly toggle between your own battle and those of others. It's a good thing I didn't need my iPod because I would have missed the countless words of encouragement or moments of assistance from runners on their own personal journey. Running may be selfish, but the runners today were anything but.
Hokas are amazing shoes. Goofy as hell, but amazing.
MCM has the weird effect of making you smile like a madwoman while holding back tears for 26.2 miles...if this is what a race does to me, I'll be a wreck whenever I get pregnant.
The shorter the shorts, the less the chafing. It's just science.
Teamhoyt running chairs are just awesome. Plain ole, wonderfully, PR-setting awesome.
If the day ever comes where I get married, I'm sure I'll love and celebrate my anniversary, but just between us, never as much I do this one.