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A Memorial Marathon

Thursday, October 25, 2012

This seems to be the season for marathons. Usually in the fall and spring they can be found every weekend. Over here in the UK it's like that just as it is in the USA and Europe and further afield.

It is my goal to do two marathons a year and I didn't know if this year I would be able to do even one. I had to pull out of training in the spring for a half AND a full due to lower back issues. I healed up over a couple of weeks and drew a line in the sand and planted a flag to run two marathons this fall. They happen to be two weeks apart.

The first of these two I completed in Liverpool 14 October. With no headphones allowed I ran to the music of my own breathing, footstrikes, and thoughts. 26.2 miles is a long way!! There were some road issues for me and my time wasn't as I wanted or planned for, but I did finish without my legs seizing up on me as they did last year.

As I devoured the finish line banana, and bottle of water I collected my kit bag and ransacked it to find my peanut butter and banana sandwich to eat on my walk back to my hotel. Slowly I proceeded and thought of how in two short weeks I would be out on the marathon road again!!

Here it is just three days away from Marathon 12 in Preston. It's a special race that is only held every 20 years to celebrate the Preston Guild. For each runner that completes the four race series (5k, 10K, half or full marathon, 10 mile) a special "bling" will be presented in November after the last race.

While out on a training run yesterday I stopped at a neighbour's house to let her know how sad I was to learn of the passing of her lovely dog Sophie. We spent time and tears talking about both Sophie and her younger half sister Sasha who lives with another member of family. (Sophie is on the right) We remembered the greetings of Sophie to me and our dog when I would be out walking. I then shared with her the heartache my husband and I are going through at the loss of his father. It was good therapy to both talk and listen to someone who could understand. We grieved together.

Talk then shifted to Sunday's marathon and how she admired the fact I was running another one. I told her how I couldn't believe I was doing it again so soon and how important it is to keep focus while out on the road for the amount of hours. She said to me.."Run it for Sophie". I thought why not?!

So after leaving her house and continuing on my run I thought of Ms Sophie and her lovely groomed face and sweet disposition. Her wagging tail and little pink rain coat. I also thought of my 90 year old late father in law's struggle with dementia and frailness of body. I could use my memories of them to push me through the struggles that will come on Sunday during the 26.2 miles of the marathon. They will be my centering point when my mind wanders and wonders why I am out there AGAIN! When I start to get tired and legs and hips start to ache I will think of them and continue on to the finish line. (A young Lenny in the RAF)

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