Do you have to forget your last marathon before you try another?

Flashback: June 16, 2012

— Conversation with my sister, approximately 3 hours after my first marathon–
Sis: Congrats! So do you want to run it with me next year?
Me: Don’t ask me that right now.

Flashback again: October 23, 2012

It happened again.

Flashback one last time: February 20, 2013

Really, what have I done?

Fast forward to June 26, 2013

4 days post-marathon-number-2 of my lifetime.

Grandma’s Marathon 2013.
I sit here, still almost in disbelief I’ve run a marathon once.
Let alone twice.
It really is the weirdest feeling.
I really don’t know why I feel this way, because don’t get me wrong, about 19 miles into a 26.2 trot, your very being becomes VERY REAL to you.
I think I almost forgot how dang HARD a marathon is.

But you have to Forget

They hurt.
They are time consuming to prepare for.
They hurt.
And they hurt for a couple days {for some, longer} after.
Race day weather was perfect for us runners.

Tail wind. {GLORIOUS tail wind}
About 55 degrees and humid.

Slight mist to drizzle to sprinkle along the way.
Party on.
My sister and I trained most of our long runs together, so we planned we’d stay together as long as possible,ย if not the whole 26 miles.

I knew the key to hitting my goal of 4hrs 30 mins: being vigilant of the pace.
It’s so easy to get going too fast, especially at the start.

Miles 1-14 honestly Flew By

I had the GPS watch, so I had to reign my sister in a few times.

Told her “Ok, we gotta chill out if we’re gonna do this for X-more miles” ๐Ÿ˜‰
Once we hit that 13.1, it was just a matter of getting ourselves to Duluth to the crowds.
My sister and I ran together until about 19-ish miles.
That’s when I hit the wall.
I told her to carry on while I slowed up.
Plus, we were into the part of Duluth where the crowd support helps your life immensely.
This is when flashback #3 really danced around inside my head.
“I’m seriously doing this again in October?” {I think I said this 3 times that mile.}

Thankfully, after running part of the 21st mile with Chris, aka the counterpart to Team Blaze, formed
around the 23rd mile last year, I pulled it together and carried on a bit more gracefully than 19/20.

Lemon Drop Hill at mile 22 (the only real major hill on the whole course) didn’t feel so bad.

I think the Fog Helped

You couldn’t dwell on what was too far ahead of you.
Mind games. That’s really all it is, folks.
Mile 23/24-ish, I stopped to stretch out my cramping calf.

A lady came up to me, personally, and said: “You can do this. You got this.”
I must have given her a blank look because she continued walking, but turned around again and said…ย “but I KNOW it’s not easy. It’s not at ALL easy.”
I smiled. Nodded. And that got me through that mile.

Knowing someone else feels your pain helps, I guess.
Once you hit mile 24 and get into the heart of downtown Duluth, it truly is the home stretch.
But for me, the longest part.
I know taking a left off Superior Street onto Lake Avenue will take you right to that finish line!
But no, continue down to 5th, run UP that stinkin’ overpass…

Around the DECC… Around that ship…. And finally under that previously stated short cut…

Then the finish line.

My parents always cheer near mile 25, so I always have that to look forward to.

This positions them to cheer for us as we pass on Superior Street, then cross Lake Ave (Yeah, The Shortcut…. ha!)
and watch us cross the finish.

I saw my parents and my best friend from college, Meghann.
Meghann told me the night before, she’d jump in to keep me company “until Red Lobster” if I needed.

She chatted away as I was in Misery

Her company kept my mind off my current state of 25 miles.
She jumped off to spectate again as we approached Red Lobster.
I vowed at this point: Channel it. Be done.
I finished in 4:39:13.
15 minutes faster than last year.
9 minutes slower that my “bullseye” time.
{I set a bullseye type goal system– broad goal: finish the race; mid-range goal: better my time;
bullseye: 4:30. This way, I leave satisfied and proud of something.}
Maybe it’s the “Marathon High”, but I’m itching to get out for a run again.

I’m feeling excited and energized to continue into my training for Chicago.
Improvement from last year.
New theory: you don’t always have to forget your last marathon to try another.
I will test out this new theory.

My body definitely hasn’t forgotten the pain yet…
Here’s to some recovery weeks and jumping right back into it!

If you’ve ever done more than one marathon training in a year, I’d love to hear your training plans!

Angie Norvitch

Angie is a web designer, proud marathoner, crocheter, web nerd, social network junkie, MN twinsโ€™ diehard, buffalo chicken pizza connoisseur, sister, daughter, lover of sunsets and all things sunshiney, 20-something, beach lover, 5th grade spelling bee champ, olympic foosball hopeful, saved by grace. [ephesians 2:8-9], loved unconditionally. [psalm 139], blessed beyond measure. [john 1:12].

Just to name a few things.