So once again I have managed to translate myself, on foot, 26.2 miles. Why you ask? Because it was there. Though now there may be a further reason: a sub 5 hour time. Last time I finished in 5:22:44. This year I finished in…5:01:09. So close. I feel good about it though. I left everything I had on the course and suffered a near critical hip flexor failure at about mile 16.
Unlike 2016 the weather was much more cooperative. Though it was raining when we started out, it was not too bad. The light rain, overcast sky and mid 60s temperature made it perfect running weather. I guess I’m not entirely cursed.
Despite missing my target time this race was still full of personal records: Fastest marathon, most total marathons, most marathons entered, most marathons started, most marathons completed, most marathons entered in a three year period, most marathons started in a three year period, most marathons completed in a three year period and a whole host of others.
I recall during my first race back in 2016, when I was beginning to struggle there were some pacers that came up behind me and encouraged me to join them. Two women, one in her late 30s early 40s and another in her early 70s. Both were regular marathoners but there was something about the older one. Her speech was a little slow so I thought she might have a disability and found a hobby in running. I was close. Turns out she had found a hobby in running many years ago. She was completing somewhere around her 320th marathon and the previous weekend had qualified for Boston. Yes, Three, Two, Zero.
It gets better.
Her slower speech and thought processes were the result of a stroke a few years earlier. She had previously been a grade school teacher but was being pushed into retirement for medical disability. It had been a big enough stroke that it was somewhat miraculous that she had survived. She said she didn’t remember the few hours before, and her first memory afterwards was a day or so later in the hospital where she remained for a few days.
Eleven (11) days later she ran 15 miles.