It's go time.
I did my 2 mile jog this morning to keep my legs loose. I even went out at 10:30 a.m. to "prepare myself" for the actual start of the marathon tomorrow. I took it easy and was able to breathe in and out of my nose the whole way.
I picked up my official race bag today (thanks, Christine) with my bib #, champion chip and this years 2009 long sleeve dri-fit Boston Marathon T-shirt (which, by the way, is so bleeping bright, I burned my retinas taking it out of the bag).
The chip is on my shoe, my bib # is pinned to my shorts (I'll warm up after a couple of miles, it's worth it to wear shorts), and my fuel belt is packed. All that is left to do now is put some dry clothes in there and put my feet up. And sleep. Oh yeah, that.
Well, we'll see how that one goes. ;-)
This time tomorrow, the 113th Annual Boston Marathon will just be a memory. It'll be another accomplishment I can be proud of and share with my loved ones. It's been a long road and I'd be lying if I didn't say there was a part of me that can't WAIT for this to be over so I can "have my life back". But, I know it won't be long before that itch to get out there again comes back.
It's been a rollercoaster ride with every emotion imaginable penetrating my psyche. I've experienced joy, excitement, nervousness, dread and outright PANIC. How will my legs and lungs hold up? Will I set a personal record? Will I find the perfect balance between conservative and aggressive in my pacing? But, now, none of that seems to matter. That gun is going to go off and I'll be at that starting line ready to run.
I came across an old issue of Runners World this morning (September 2006) and read an article by John Bingham called "The Chosen Path". This excerpt really says it all:
"It's also important to find the joy in today's run, even if it doesn't markedly advance us in our pursuit of something better. The magic of running is that it has inherent value of its own. We need to celebrate the accomplishment of every run -- no matter how far or how fast -- and not let the positive drive for self-improvement become an all-consuming obsession with constant improvement."
He goes on to say:
"When I started to run, I was in between the smoker-drinker-overeater and the healthy, active person I wanted to be. After months of running, however, I was no longer content with just running. I wanted to go farther -- and then, faster. There was no way to be at peace with what I had already accomplished because there was always something else I thought I had to achieve. I was frustrated at not being where I wanted to be -- and that meant never enjoying where I was."
He concludes the article by saying that he has given up on living in a constant state of in between. He is not going to spend the rest of his life in between yesterday and tomorrow.
I want to enjoy the fact that I am healthy and strong enough to be where I am right now...less than 16 hours from the start of the Boston Marathon.
I want to revel in the accomplishment of running my 3rd marathon. Training and completing one Boston is quite a feat. After tomorrow, I'll be able to say that I did it TWICE! Awesome.
I want to celebrate the accomplishment of raising $3,736.00 for the Lazarus House and be thankful that I was blessed with the task to help people who have fallen on hard times.
It's not just "all about me" tomorrow. There is a higher purpose than just "setting a PR"...and that makes tomorrow's event so much more meaningful and important.
Try not to become a man of success but a man of value.
Don't forget to TRACK me ONLINE! Go to www.baa.org. My race # is 22608.
26.2 miles here I COME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!