Facebook and Twitter and their ability to make you feel like you're there...sort of.
I'm a nerd. No really, don't be shocked. I'm also awkward, but that's a different post entirely. I love to watch races. No, not cars or horses. People. I love to watch people run.
When I was in college I was so lucky to be a mile away from part of the course for the Twin Cities Marathon. I was also lucky enough to be in really good shape. (Okay, maybe that part wasn't really luck!) This meant that I could run a couple miles down the River Road to Lake Street, cheer for my friends who were running as they passed about the 17.5 mile point, run across the bridge, and cheer again as they neared mile 21. One year I even ran most of the final five miles with a friend who was really hurting. Then I got kicked off the course because I didn't have a number, but one of the photographers got a really nice picture of me!
Now, sitting in my dining room sipping coffee and following @USATFMN and @TCMarathon on Twitter when I should be waking the kid up so she naps at a decent time, I'm feeling that let down. I did a post a little while ago about giving up the all or nothing mentality, and I need that reminder myself today. The marathon is really the one big thing missing from my running resume. I was planning on running my first in 2009. I was registered for the TC marathon, but then I decided it would be a good time to take on another full time job before quitting the one I already had, and with a month and a half before the race, I found myself working ridiculous hours and not being able to scrape together the time or energy to get in my last weeks of training. Sad day.
Then, in the summer of 2011, I decided that 2012 was my year. There was a race in Wisconsin in May, and I was going to do it. I had a stable job that allowed me plenty of time and flexibility. I had the motivation, I had a place to stay (20 minutes away from the race at my parent's house), and I had money for the entry fee, since it was about half the price of other marathons I'd looked at!
But I also had one other thing. I had this growing inside of me:
As my uncle Mark (a multi-time marathoner, including a Boston or two!) said: Some people will do anything to get out of marathon training!
He was kidding, of course.
But someday I'll get there. I'll conquer the 26.2. It just seems so far away right now as I glance longingly at my brand new running shoes that are still shiny and white because they haven't even been outside yet and I've run a grand total of 6 miles since moving at the end of August and I have nowhere to run but around the corn and soybean fields framed by dirt roads.
Someday I'll get there. I may be a mommy, but I still have my own dreams. I may put my family first, but I'm not going to give up my own identity. Maybe I won't run a marathon next year, or even the year after. Maybe not even the year after that. But I'll get there, because P is raising a mommy who wants to teach her kid the value of hard work and not giving up, in spite of a beautiful, smiling, energetic little bump in the road!