From the marathon to the mile…in 4 days

I got back to NYC Tues after the Boston Marathon. I jogged two miles on the treadmill on Wed. By Thurs I could walk without limping. And on Friday I raced a mile on the track….

Our newly created team, Brooklyn Track Club, had planned to run at the North Brooklyn Runners McCarren Park Track Classic. New to the club scene, we wanted to start competing in the local meets and start to get recognized. And there were Tracksmith singlets on the line- so we had to show up! ­čśë I ran the mile of the DMR. The good thing about it was- there was no (outside) pressure to perform at 100%. Except from myself of course. I wanted to do well. There were a lot of people there: spectating and running, so I didn’t want to be embarrassingly slow. The other three girls were so lighthearted and we were all nervous and laughing about how it was going to go. We warmed up together, cheered on others, joked about dropping the baton, contemplated just going to a bar. But I think we were all also excited.

Track meets are a different breed of a race. They are high energy and competitive and make you feel  like a professional no matter what. You wear different shoes, you run in a circle, you pass on the inside, you hear a bell- all of these things are abnormal to the road runner. There is no hiding in track races. Everyone can see you every step of the way. They see when you start strong, they see when you hold your position, they see when you start to die, they know when your form goes. It is a full exposure race.  But I love it.

I hate to build up track and our race and how excited we were just to come to a screeching halt- but we were the only girls team that signed up for the DMR. LOL. SO, we were going to race with the boys, including our own men’s team. The plan┬ádidn’t change much – enjoy it and do our best. And we did. We looked strong, we held our own, we beat a bunch of the boys teams. We got our Tracksmith singlets. We were a team! It was so much fun. I ran 5:32 for the mile, just 4 days after Boston.

And then we did go to a bar, and planned our next race…

 

 

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Boston 2017

It seems fitting that my first post would come directly after the Boston Marathon. I am sitting here with sore legs and my finishers shirt- and really want to go back over the entire weekend and revel in it. It was an amazing experience, but I want to say this upfront: I had a very disappointing marathon; it wasn’t the time or race I had trained for. However, after some sulking (ok, a lot) and some tears, I realize that the sum of the weekend totally outweighed the time on the clock.

I am lucky. I am lucky to have qualified for this prestigious race. I am lucky that my body allows me to train at a high level. I am lucky that I have such supportive and talented friends. All of these things contributed to the success of the weekend. We went there to run; to spend between 2.75 and 3.5 hours throwing ourselves toward Boylston Street. What we wound up doing was laughing a lot (aside from the actual run). I didn’t realize how funny we are- each of us in different ways. It was fun. I was nervous, I was anxious, but I was surrounded by people who understood, who were in the same position, who were willing to talk out every detail leading up to the race. We focused each other, distracted each other, motivated, listened, argued, pushed.

We were all upset with how the race went. It was too hot, too sunny, our bodies couldn’t take it. We all died slow and painful deaths. There are pictures to prove it- I’ve cringed at them already. But after the race, sitting on the grass, we didn’t even need to say anything. It was a shared understanding of what we had all just suffered through. And that silent communication was a byproduct of the bond that had formed. Training partners, teammates, friends, competitors- whatever we are, I have no doubt we will be saying things like ‘remember that time in Boston…’ for a long time.