Thursday, October 4, 2012
a pre-marathon jitters thursday thirteen
it's later than usual for me...i should be asleep...but i haven't done a thursday thirteen in a few weeks, and maybe writing is what will calm me down a teensy bit for tonight. 13. tomorrow during the work day, i head to mccormick place where eventually this weekend, thousands of other runners will make their way to pick up their race packets. i'm super excited! i'm going with a few co-workers, including my boss. how cool is that?? this will be her 5th year running. will i get sucked into the merchandising? maybe a bit. i want some new pint glasses (that i won't drink beer out of) and maybe something else small, but chicago-inspired. 12. i think the biggest reason i'm so nervous is because i've worked pretty hard this running season. i've given it my all...someone very close to me keeps telling me to stop thinking negatively, to only think positively. but i have to acknowledge my fears. how can i conquer them if i'm not honest about them? and what i am most fearful of is that even after giving it my all, it's still not good enough to run throughout the entire race (sans the aid stations.) will i still let those voices get the better of me?? I SAY NO. NO MORE. but that's what scares me most, honestly. 11. i'm so proud of how far i've come this year. i think back to even as late as june, struggling with every single step. still doing a run/walk for a bit. how horrible that Glow Stick run was (or whatever it was called.) And suddenly it was as if a light switch turned on and BOOM. my pace improved with every run. My first half marathon, where I finished with a huge smile on my face during the last half mile, because I KNEW I'd beaten my previous PR (and did so by 3 minutes.) Only to be followed up with another 3 weeks later, bettering that PR by another 15 minutes!!! 10. thinking back to my longer training runs...15 miles, when at the end i heard words i hadn't heard in years. "how was your run?" it was weird, but i realized right then and there that one of the things i had been missing was a solid support system, and that as much as i claim i like to be alone, it's really nice to have that person who genuinely wants to know "how was your run?" then there was 16 miles, followed by and 18 miler, half of which was in the rain. And much of it with "how was your run" person on their bike, not letting me get down on myself at the tail end of my run. THANK YOU!!!!!!! 9. music. on my 20 mile run, i found enough things to keep me entertained that i didn't turn on my music until around 13 or 14 miles. that's some serioudly ground breaking stuff for me. hell, i should be able to do that on sunday, the marathon course is nothing BUT entertaining for miles, right? we'll see. 8. my favorite parts on the course include: Boystown (in Lakeview); Damen/Adams because it's the furthest west on the course, and where i used to watch the race back in the early 2000's when i lived close to there; that area between Boystown and North Avenue, there's a house that always plays "sweet home chicago" real loud. LOVE that. and of course, Pilsen. 7. my least favorite parts on the course include: the first mile (calm your ass down! don't go too fast! damn garmin always get messed up under the bridge! those bumpy bridges, i'm going to fall!); the occasional lonely stretches between miles 14 and 18. much fewer crowds make it this far west. eh. and those hella lonely stretches south of chinatown alongside the dan ryan. 6. the weather looks to be cooperating! Low of 38, high of 54? JACKPOT. Lou and Meg? this run's for you!!!! this is for that bullshit 87 degree, high humidity having, no water/gatorade aid station having race we had 5 years ago, and subsequent runs since then that still have not yielded the famous fall temperatures of marathon years gone by. 5. i'm so sleepy right now as i write this. i know it's not the most entertaining post. sue me. 4. i have the best friends in the world. i have one planning to run close to 20 miles with me (as she's running her marathon in another 3 weeks.) i have my cousin who plans to cheer me on somewhere along that "home stretch" from 35th/Michigan to Roosevelt/Michigan. Lou and Meg might be out there (or at least Lou) with their little bundles of joy. Lou's husband is running. he's way fast, so I totally understand if she doesn't get around to seeing me. in 2007, i remember ducking around the start line with her and meg...because she was trying to avoid seeing him, i think. they had just started dating. 1-2-3 AWWWWWWWWWWWWWW! they're perfect for each other, too. and they had the most awesome wedding. and then my "how was your run" confidant will be out on the course in various spots. "St How Was Your Run" might have pretzels and orange slices at some point on the course. from sainthood to knight in shining armour status, i do declare. 3. for years i've avoided that hill on the lakefront path at 47th street. it's easy to do, as there's a pathway (for punks) that goes around it, too. not this year! the first time i came across that hill this year i decided to do something different. at first it was hard, but now to do anything less is nearly unthinkable. and for that reason, i will not be turned away by that hill at Roosevelt and Michigan. What hill, you out-of-towners might say? Well that's a HILL in Chicago, and it's a bitch after having run 26 miles of relatively flat land...and i don't know about anyone else, but I'll be running it, and running past that sign that says 26, with just .2 more to go. 2. this run marks an end and a beginning. as you've heard me go on and on about, i can't believe how much i've improved...i'm on the brink of big things. this race is my starting point. stay tuned. and thanks, b. 1. and just in case i need some encouragement along the way, i've got 26 running quotes, one for each mile. gonna pull them out randomly, read, and leave 'em on the course. right where i leave everything else when i give it my all. i'll post those later for your reading pleasure.