A Marathon that never happened
Today about 5000 people a few of them my friends ran the Ottawa Marathon, I was supposed to be among them. My journey to the marathon started about two and half years ago, back then and in way still today, I thought runners are weird. Two and a half years ago, I tore my Achilles heel playing soccer, a year after that, I was sick and tired of sitting on a couch and decided to do something I never even considered.
I remember that day, I was watching TV and it was showing some people running, and I thought that is it, I need to get off the couch and get back in shape. Thanks to Google, I found out that Ottawa had a race in May that had a 10K run, and right there, I signed up. That was a big personal challenge given that I could not run longer than 1K, thanks to the Running Room, I finished it in a good time. Just as the 10K went, so did the half marathon.
The marathon is the next logical challenge, and I need a challenge. So with that, another sign up, another Running Room sign up as well, and the training started. In the process I pleaded with my friend Cindy to sign up and run it with me, and she did, and thank God for that, if it was not for her, it would have been horrible to do the long runs, maybe would have never finished any of them.
I trained a lot, over the last year, the runs that I tracked totalled 152, 962KM, and I burned 104,491 calories. I swallowed enough of the awful Gu, ate Sharkies, I took epson salt baths, 3 shoes, got knee pain, did physiotherapy, you name it.
This of course could not have happened with out the full support of my wife who was there every step of the way. From laundry to watching the kids, to picking me up in odd places all stinky, to bailing out on a late dinner party cause I have to wake up early for a run tomorrow.
4 days ago, I got sick, thought it was the usual flu, turned out to be an infection that is off all things not common. I slept all of Thu, most Friday, and most of Sat. But through it all, I wanted to run the race. What made it worse was all the media coverage of the race, my friends calling wishing me luck, the closer we got to the race, the more I wanted to run it. Worse of all, if I miss it, the next race is God knows when and I am not training again for it, that is it, its over! On Saturday I told everyone I am not running, but I had not given up. I set up my alarm clock as if I was running. I woke up at 2:00 am with a bad fever and it was then that I realized this is not gonna happen, turned the alarm off and sadly went back to sleep.
What bothers me about not running the race the most is the fact that I got this weird infection that prevented me from even failing. I feel like I got robbed of an experience and for that I was extremely disappointed. I was also robbed from fulfilling my goals 1) to finish the race, 2) to hand off the medal to someone I am been dyeing to give it to, 3) to run it with my friend.
As the day progressed, I got happier as I saw my friends email, facebook and tweet their results, I am so glad for them, and I grew determined to run a marathon, I started looking for one next week even, hmmm Winnipeg is in 3 weeks, why not, I have family there.
I realize now that today was just not meant to be, for one I would have robbed Cindy from having a good race as i usually struggled with my runs post 30K, (She did an AWESOME 4:13), maybe it was a sign I was not fully ready, maybe I needed that one extra reason to finish strong, regardless it was just not meant to be. Its not the first time I am hit with a set back, but now, add to my 3 reasons to run a marathon, a new one. Now its personal, no matter how painful retraining is…
Pain is temporary – Quitting is forever.
As an update to this post: Two weeks after the Ottawa Marathon, I signed up and completed the Manitoba Marathon in Winnipeg Manitoba. It was every thing I expected and worse but its done, kick that off the bucket list.