Hey everybody! The Eugene Marathon was *checks calendar* WEEKS ago and I didn’t blog about it! Some of you may be wondering what happened?!?!? did you run all the miles?!?!?! I did run all of the miles and it was awesome! But! First things first! Look at sweet new FWR header image. Isn’t it awesome?!?! I had my friend and awesome artist Pete Soloway design it for me. That’s cartoon me running! I love it!!!
Ok! Now let’s get back to me running for a really really really long time. I completed the marathon in pretty much the time I expected based on my last long training runs. There’s a funny thing that happens when you’re running for hours; you just do what you can do and know that you can do it any faster or more. It’s weirdly peaceful. I am an incredibly thinky person, always wondering if I’ve done enough, if I could do more, if I’ve done too much etc. Running a marathon completely nullified the thinky part of me. I knew I was doing my very best, giving all I had out there on that course and while I was physically challenged more than I’ve ever been physically challenged before, I felt a serenity and acceptance of things as they are not as I would overthink them to be. It was a life-changing experience and while I don’t think it’s necessary to run a marathon to find that center, I’m really glad I found my way there.
The event itself was fantastic. I cannot commend the folks running the Eugene Marathon enough. Running long distances solo versus doing it in an organized event is a whole different experience. Running alongside thousands of other runners with hundreds of volunteers offering you water, bananas, high-fives and hugs created a sense of community and fellowship that really helped to power through the toughest miles. I was also supported and cheered by my wife and some of my very best friends in the latter half of the race. Seeing them alongside the course taking photos and calling out was like seeing an oasis in the desert. I’m sure I could have limped through to the end on conditioning and stubbornness alone but I didn’t have to and I’m super grateful.
Post-race I recovered well initially. I had a blister on one foot from a pebble that stowed away in my shoe but otherwise after a shower and some lunch I felt great after the race. A couple days later I went out for a short run though and found that I strained a stabilizer muscle running on the outside of my right lower leg. I’ve been rehabbing it and taking it a little easy on running since but I got the all-clear from my leg muscle expert guy and knocked out an 8 mile run this last weekend so I’m working my way back up to long distance running shape. I probably won’t run another marathon until at least next year (or later– it’s a real time sink) but I’d like to run one or two half marathons.
The weeks since the marathon have been a whirlwind. I delayed a lot of social and professional obligations during race prep and those caught up with me right away. I thought that once I got through my busy April my May would be one long weekend but that’s not how it’s played out. No rest for the runner. I’ve got writing projects, work projects, house projects, and backpacking trips all stacked up and now I’m imagining June will be long weekend even though I already know it won’t be. Once you run a marathon, maybe you never really stop. I’m not sure, you guys. I’ll keep you posted.