“Wait, you’re running another marathon?”
People gave me weird looks when I told them I was running my first marathon two years ago. Unless you catch me on a day when I’m running a t-shirt from a race or a hat (or both) most people wouldn’t guess just by looking at me that I’m a runner. Running a marathon had been a dream of mine since I was in the first grade and watched my dad run the White Rock Marathon in Dallas. In 2017, just a few months after I watched my sister run Chicago, I registered for my first marathon because I knew it was my turn.
In December I registered to run Chicago again. This year my dad, my sister, and I are running together. We’re each training for a spring half marathon as we head towards summer marathon training. I absolutely loved my experience training for Chicago two years ago, and as I’ve driven past my favorite running trails I’m anticipating the feel of my feet on the crushed limestone and electrolyte fluids sticking to my hands and hydration belt.
The thing about marathons is: they’re hard. And that’s why people seem confused and surprised when I tell them I’m running Chicago again. I was out on the course for over six hours and was an hour off my goal pace due to the heat. It wasn’t a great marathon debut. But as hard as the 2017 marathon was for me, it’s not the hardest experience of my life by a long shot. Running the marathon was a way of learning embodied perseverance and reframing hardship. I can look back and see more realistically how hard it was recovering from ankle surgery in high school because I have a better sense now of what it’s like to teach my body how to recover and do new things. Since running the marathon I have felt more courage to face incredible challenges because I ran a race that a few years ago I would have thought was impossible for me to finish. I want to run it again to keep reminding myself that I can do hard things and I just really love running.
Yes, I’m running another marathon, and I’m so excited.
Coming Soon: I’m running and fundraising for the American Brain Tumor Association and here’s why you should donate!