Finding joy in the little things at Sunday's marathon: 1) I picked a pink poppy at mile 17 and finished with it (it makes a nice pressed bookmark) and 2) Around mile 22 I grabbed two chocolates, carrying and dropping them several times, but finished with them all to earn the satisfaction of my boys excitement when they received them (even though they were melted).
|No PR today for ME. Sunday I ran as "Colleen Winn", 1st time marathoner. Mrs. Winn, my friend, I hope you are happy with YOUR PR (pictured here with my good friend, Mr. H, after his first marathon)|
As many others do, I see such spiritual parallels in running a race. I feel "small" on race day. On Sunday, I was just ONE runner, swimming in the midst of 27,000 runners. I draw a great deal of strength from God on race day. My training (or lack thereof) varies with each race, and I'm always a little curious as to how this old body will hold up. In pushing myself, I re-establish an understanding of the frailty of the flesh. I am reminded of God's grace and thankful for his protection.I find myself praying through pain (or even before it comes). I LOVE that closeness..and the vulnerability in realizing that God strengthens me in my times of weakness. I was anxious with anticipation for that experience last Sunday.
Around mile 6, I felt slight pain in my knees. By mile 13, my left leg and foot began having the "pins and needles" feeling. After about a mile of running through it, I was able to shed that sensation. At mile 17, my right calf muscle cramped up, and at mile 23, my right vastis medialis (teardrop muscle) knotted up quite visibly and stayed that way until I completed the race. Despite THESE slight pains, of which I was happy to run through, the pain that I was most worried about was the sciatica (tingling, numbness,weakness that starts in my lower back and travels downward through my bottom and down through the back of my leg) that usually hits me around mile 17. This pain NEVER came. I was so relieved and so thankful for THAT. What encouragement it brought to not suffer the pain I was most afraid of on that day! I was just so thankful to have a body that could do it. What a blessing! Pain was minimal...and the fun and enjoyment of the race was in the forefront of my mind.
|yes, this is an official race|
photo I DO NOT plan to
|Thanks, Twitter, for the outlet.|
Tweeting was a worthwhile
distraction in this occasion.
After four marathons, to echo my sentiments from last time: "I STILL LOVE (and maybe a little more) the adrenaline-packed, sweat-filled, pain-free (ha!), I-love-running-and-won't-stop 26.2-miles of a marathon race"! This had definitely been the most fun and easiest marathon I'd ever run.
Despite the slower finish time (4:18), it was only 11 minutes behind my personal best and 18 minutes FASTER than my first marathon. I'm satisfied with my time. But I'm ecstatic with the ease and sheer enjoyment with which I ran.
I wouldn't recommend to anyone else NOT training for this race (see part 1: http://allthingsfitness-christy.blogspot.com/2012/04/run-to-remember-ready-for-okc-memorial.html ). But somehow, it worked out okay for me this time. I'm so glad I followed through with my commitment; it was my best marathon ever...out of four.
"If you want to win, run a 10K...if you want to EXPERIENCE, run a MARATHON."