Boston Marathon alert! 23 days to go, my long runs are basically all in, and now I am concentrating on hills, strength, yoga, and FUNDRAISING! It has been quite the journey since I secured a spot on The ALLY Foundation’s Boston Marathon team, and I have to admit I haven’t enjoyed all of it. Mainly because every time I felt like my training was going really well, I got injured. Kind of like right now. On Thursday night, a beautiful, 60 degree Boston evening, I planned on a 3 hour run. I kicked off running along the Charles River, up and down hilly side streets in Beacon Hill, zigzagging through the North End (Boston’s Little Italy), and over the bridge to Charlestown.
Boston is decorated with signs like this:
These make me tear up every time I see them! And throughout my run Thursday night, they kept me going.
Up until Charlestown I felt okay, and I started in on the hills. The good news? The last time I was running Boston, about 3 weeks before the race, I ran Monument Hill in Charlestown and was DYING. Last night I did it twice and felt awesome! But after a variety of up and down hills, my previously clicking knee started to hurt. Walking didn’t help, in fact when I walked, I had to kind of kick my foot out the side to avoid the pain.
I ran, I walked, I limped. And while I knew I COULD finish the run, I decided it was better to drop out of a training run than to miss the marathon. Along my walk back to South Station, I made a few decisions.
1) I am going to enjoy the rest of the journey. Sure, marathons are hard, but the Boston Marathon is an institution that is incredibly historic and special. It seems like all of Eastern MA comes out along the route, and I want to take all of that in.
2) I don’t care about my time. That’s right. I’ll tell you that my last Boston Marathon time was 4:20 flat. My Bermuda Marathon time was 4:16. But both of these times were before I had a very time consuming job, and I had more time and energy to train. So whatever time is best for where I am right now is fine.
3) I am Bib #24739. I planned on only telling my husband and family my number so that they could follow me. In my head, I start worrying, “What if people think my time is too slow? What if I don’t do well?” That’s just silly.
4) The most important things that I can do in the next 3 plus weeks are resting, revving up my nutrition, stretching, and mentally relaxing.
As I walked along the Boston waterfront, I had a runner’s high that couldn’t be beat, despite the pain in my knee, it finally clicked with me last night that all of those months, those hours on the elliptical, the spinning classes, the walking, the running, its all been for this.
Coincidentally, when I got home and took my mail out of the mailbox, my official Boston Marathon bib pickup card was in it