Distance makes the heart grow stronger! 💗

On Oct 13th 2019, after a break of 10 years, I ran my third marathon.  For those of you who read my last post, you know how anxious I was about the whole thing.  I don't think that nervous anxiety ever went away.  At least not until I got to the marathon start line.  From that point on, my adrenaline kicked in and the energy from the crowds carried me through till mile 22.  The last 4.2 miles were sheer will power and grit.  My knee had been bothering me the week prior to the marathon so I knew there was a real possibility I might not finish.  As expected, during the course of the marathon, my knees and feet took a huge beating. At mile marker 23, I remember telling myself I have to finish the race because this would be my last marathon.  I continued repeating that throughout the day even after I finished.  The next morning, as I went to my closet to hang my finisher medal, I saw the medals from my first two marathons and in my heart, I knew there will be a fourth :)

Friends often ask me why I choose to run marathons.  I don't have a great answer.  But in my experience, training for a marathon has a lot of analogies to life.  Training for a marathon is a grind.  There are times when it feels like it would be easier to stay in bed or watch that extra show on Netflix.  As a parent. you often feel non-stop stress because every time you go for a run, there is something else you are supposed to be doing with your kids that you won't do.  Over time, you learn to adapt schedules and make some extra space that you thought was impossible to find.  You learn patience and perseverance.  Training mandates you take care of your body with enough fuel, hydration and rest.  You learn to be more forgiving of yourself for those missed runs when life took over.  Last but not the least, you learn that it takes a village...I know I couldn't have crossed the finish line without the support of my husband, my mom, my children and my CARA training group, the 10:30 Awesomes.

I had read this quote recently that I loved : "In a marathon, you run the first third with your head, the second third with your legs, the last third with your heart."  This is certainly very apt for how the last race felt.  I have spent this past week feeling equal parts proud of finishing and upset about not finishing faster.  Next time around, I know I need to incorporate more strength training, more cross training and more speed training :) But for now, I smile because finishing another marathon reminded me that even in my weakest moments, I am strong...


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