Monday, September 24, 2012

I am a marathoner

I did it. I completed a marathon. My official time was 5 hours, 2 minutes and 8 seconds. I was hoping to finish under 5 hours but a popped blister on my little toe that needed a little attention slowed me down a little. But I can't complain one bit because I finished a freaking marathon. As painful and exhausting an experience that it was, it was one that I will cherish forever (and might consider doing again).
It was 2 years ago yesterday that I started this blog. I've had a few lows along the way but a lot more highs. I need to finish thanking a few people.
I want to make sure I thank my family. They had to put up with me for the last 18 weeks running 4 days a week with the mileage increasing week by week. It did cause some hardships as my fellow marathoner, Todd, said it was like a part-time job.
Thank you to my wife, Jessica, for all of her support through all of this. I know she's happy to have me back as a full-time husband and father to our little Luke and Lauren. I know she was my biggest cheerleader through all of this. And thanks to my folks, relatives, in-laws, and friends. Your words of encouragement kept me going.
And now I want to thank my fellow marathoners, Chris, Todd and Kara. Way back in April or May I came up with the idea of running a marathon. I wasn't sure I would be able to do it but given enough time, I knew there was a chance. In what might have been a weak moment, they said they would do it too. All three of them have been running for a long time. Chris has one marathon under his belt, Todd has three and this would be Kara's first one. I started my training in May, injured myself in early June and was out for a couple weeks, did a race here and there throughout the summer. And it all culminated with a 26.2 run around east Omaha yesterday.
I was filled with all sorts of emotion in the last few miles. It even caused me to shed a few tears. I felt like screaming "FREEDOM!" at the top of my lungs like William Wallace minus the disembowelment and beheading. It was truly an amazing feeling of accomplishment.
2 years ago, when I ran my first 5k (barely), Chris was there for support and did it with me. When I ran, he ran. When I walked, he walked. Yesterday, Chris, Kara and I all started out together. Kara ran on ahead of us and Chris stayed with me, just like he did 2 years ago. This time he did it for 26.2 miles instead of 3.1. That sort of friendship and support will stick with me for the rest of my life I hope I can pay it forward.

I am a marathoner.

Chris, me, Kara and Todd - Omaha Marathon, September 23, 2012

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