Tuesday, May 12, 2015

When the Marathon punches you in the FACE....

Sometimes the shit hits the fan! Maine Coast Marathon edition.
My poor friend Leslie had a wonderful marathon up until mile 21 when she overheated, fell into a ditch and had to get whisked away by ambulance to have many IV's and to spend a few hours recovering. NO FUN! Luckily, she is fine now and will certainly live to see another day, and another chance to get that amazing race that she has worked so hard for.

CRASH 'N BURN! We all do it!!!
I can't really speak from her point of view since it was her turn to have a tough day on the marathon course but I know how it feels- it sucks. End of story. I was basically in the same place a year ago and can really sympathize.

I think that if one chooses to be a competitive athlete on any level the chance of failure is always there. Failure is a scary thing, and a scary word- but when you train for a specific goal and it does not happen it can be hard to see your effort as anything but a failure. (even if you have run like a badass for 21 miles, or even if you win your AG but were 30 minutes off your goal time...)

Sometimes the wheels just come right off the bus....
There are options.
You can stop putting yourself out there, you can live the safe life and not take the chances and risks that might lead to failure. It is really hard to feel like you have "let people down" when things don't go your way and it is tempting to isolate oneself from the people who support you the most. It can be really jarring to end up in a ditch but it happens! Literally or figuratively.

This is a drunk guy in a ditch. Basically, after mile 20 we all act like drunk guys.
Option two! Own that shit. Take a couple days to pout, a little time to evaluate your goals and then get the hell after it. Shout it from the rooftops because what do you have to lose? I doubt that I am ever going to be an amazing Olympic runner but my goals are still big to me, and it is risky to own and name what you are trying to achieve- but do it. Get after it.

And at the end of the day, win or lose, PR of DNF your friends, family and running community are going to stick with you, support you and celebrate or sympathize with you 100% depending on how your day goes. I have been on both sides- celebrating an amazing day and having people pick me back up after an awful one. If there is ONE thing you can count on it is the unwavering support of your team of support people (including random internet friends. Obvs.)

Personally, I had a lousy year of running in 2014. I would not have appreciated the goals I have met so far in 2015 if I had not fallen on my face several times. It hurts to fall, but the feeling of earning success the next time is completely worth it.

ME: in 2014.Crap!
I know a few people who had a tough day on Sunday. After being able to control your training, nutrition, recovery and preparedness- having the weather throw you a curve ball is tough. I also know how much I respect the athletes that had the tough race. They are amazing, dedicated runners- and really great people, and I really can't wait to see them drop the hammer at some point in the (near) future.

Onward and upward friends, chins up, get out there and run like nobody is watching (or like I am chasing you- that would be scary!) And know that we are all wishing you the BEST of luck for next time!



  1. Thank you so much for featuring me and we'll, even though it didn't end as planned (and hoped) at least I'm still kicking. You are amazing. Love you girlie! (Can I say that already) and how did you find the picture of my car exploding too?

    1. Next time!!! Big BQ next time! And seriously, between finding a pic of your car exploding and the wheels coming off my bus I feel like I (or Eric) outdid myself (or his self??) with pics for this post ;-)

  2. That was well written!!! I ran the challenge and although I PR'd the Marathon by 20 min. with a 4:07 and im very excited about that! I was also hoping for a sub 4! So I look at it as now I still have room to PR next time!