I am a Marathon Maniac!

As many of you know, I was a fairly latecomer to running. It wasn’t until I was 35 that I voluntarily ran a step that wasn’t away from a wasp or some other insect.

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Once I ran in my first race, a 10k at the age of 46, I was hooked. I loved everything about the event: the preparation, the training, the excitement at packet pick up, the buzz on race day, not to mention the feeling of success and accomplishment that I had done something I never would have imagined possible! Well, the races got longer and more frequent and when I had a few half marathons under my belt I read about a group called the Marathon Maniacs. Members of this group are exactly as described – marathon maniacs! As I read the criteria for joining I was amazed that anyone would ever do that, let alone, actually want to do that! Well the idea obviously took root in my mind and eventually I qualified to join their sister group, the Half Fanatics.

The last few years, I have found it very empowering to set myself goals and my goal for 2013 was… yes, to qualify for the Marathon Maniacs! I already knew I wanted to run the Calgary marathon and so I looked around for another one close to that date.  For the first level, I needed to run two full marathons within a 16 day time frame. Handsome Husband decided that Rock and Roll San Diego was the one to do! That worked out perfectly for me because it would mean a mini runcation in that beautiful city, but not so good because it was just one week after Calgary!

Eventually race day for the Calgary marathon dawned and I was feeling good! I had trained, rested and was hoping to beat my last time. We set off running and all was good. The miles (or kilometres in Canada) ticked past and when the half marathoners split off, I settled into the rest of my run. Until 30k (18.5 miles) I began to get bad stomach cramps which worsened and resulted in two porta potty visits! I also developed a huge blister on the ball of my foot and maybe this affected my running gait because my hip flexors hurt, as did my lower back! I really struggled the last few miles, had to walk a fair way.( I’ll stop the injury list there because I know my mother will read this and be even more convinced that I should stop running before I damage my joints!)

I eventually finished with a time of 04.58.52, very disappointed with my performance and worried if I was going to be able to run another marathon in a week!

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We left for California on the following Thursday and spent a wonderful few days in the San Diego area before race day arrived. Well, I was very nervous and wasn’t looking forward to the run at all. Luckily, I had spent so much money at the expo that I had a VIP porta potty pass which allowed access into the VIP potties at the start line (If you have never seen these… wow!)

As the pre race nerves got worse, I decided to focus on the fact that I was getting to run in a beautiful place in perfect running weather, and forget about everything else. To cut a long race report short, it was great! No stomach issues, no blisters and hardly any leg/hip pains until the last couple of miles. Apart from having to walk up a killer hill at mile 21, I didn’t need to walk at all, and finished in 04.46.06.

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As I was handed my medal, I felt a little emotional. Although I hadn’t been  happy with my Calgary performance, I am amazed and proud that I am now officially Marathon Maniac #7283!

Maniacs

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9 thoughts on “I am a Marathon Maniac!

  1. Congrats on being a Marathon Maniac! That is awesome 🙂 I can’t imagine running marathons on back to back weekends. I’ve still yet to do my first marathon. Only have one half marathon under my belt. (Found you on running bloggers!)

  2. Thankyou Britt. I must admit, there were a number of times when I wondered what I had got myself into! As mentioned, I didn’t start running until I was 35 and ran my first race many years after that, you look like you have time on your side! Congratulations on your half marathon, I think that is my favourite distance!

  3. Okay, at this point in my running career I can’t imagine running a marathon EVER, let alone back-to-back like that, you ARE amazing! I’ve arrived at running quite late as well (at 59, last year) and only currently look at 5k distances as far as possible races. That being said, I’ve already done a couple and last year at this time running wasn’t even on the radar, so who knows…..? BTW I love your header pic, makes me feel very nostalgic for the Rockies, whereabouts did you take it?

    • Hi Brian and thanks for the comments! One of the best things about coming to running late is that each new distance is a PB! It was only after my first 10k, which was a Mother’s day run, that I started to wonder if I could run further! I will never be fast, but I don’t care! I just love the feeling of setting myself goals (that I never thought I would ever do!) and then accomplishing them. Next year I will be 50 and for my birthday I am running the Goofy at Disneyworld (half marathon followed the next day by a full) but I’m thinking maybe I should try for a 50k..
      The picture was taken last summer at Lower Kananaskis Lakes in Alberta. We managed to convince the teenager that it would be a gentle walk! He admitted it was worth it though, for the view!
      Rachel

  4. Congratulations! Such a Huge accomplishment! You inspire me……
    How great your going to do Goofy in Disney World…I look forward to following along…
    again…Congrats!
    Your last race and back to back Marathons…amazing…and VIP porta potties…now that is the way to Race!

  5. I just found your blog. Great name! I never knew there were VIP porta potties….I run in Ontario but I’m sure Alberta has a much nicer scenery.
    Happy Running!

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