For the last week my blog has sat empty, hiding her face in shame. I just can not rectify quitting the full marathon with myself. At night I toss and turn, unable to see myself finishing a half in my mind's eye, instead I remember the split off point at Long Beach last year where the full marathon runners wearily continued on while us half marathon runners sprinted to our easy finishes. Back then I thought those big-calved people in nike running shorts downing clif shot bloks were absolutely insane, and by the time many of them finished I was at Boston's slamming potato skins and beer. This year is different, I am different, and I have to run the full marathon.
The naysayers started in on me several months ago, and the doubt manifested itself in my sub-conscious, rearing it's ugly head in the depths of my longest runs. Never before had I stumbled to a halt mid-mile with trail left before me, but it seemed like every training run I did I took on the weight of a marathon and forgot to focus on the mileage at hand. How did I allow myself to look away from the horizon? Usually I know what to tell myself to keep running past the breaking point, but my voice was drowned out by my pulse beating ever harder in my head as my mileage climbed higher. No music, no complex issues in my life I need to work out, no time to find a challenging new trail, and a pile of laundry awaiting me at home just made every run feel lethargic... slow motion... even boring. I longed for the last mile as I started the first, and forgot to enjoy everything that happened in the middle.
As I have rested my knee and focused on shorter runs over the last 2 weeks I have realized how much I missed running, and why I set out on this journey to begin with. I can't just give up, I have come too far and worked too hard, I expect more from myself then being a quitter. Come race day I will cross that damn finish line at 26.2 miles. I may have to run and walk intermittently... but my yellow CTF jersey and I will finish!
(and if I ever try to quit again you people have to slap some sense into me!)