It all started so innocently, and looked so promising. Way back in 1998 I ran my first marathon, the NCR Trail Marathon in Baltimore County. I came out of it with a 3:39, not even knowing what the heck I was doing. A BQ at the time, and I didn’t even go. I was too focused on triathlon that year to care.
A couple of kids and more triathlons later, and I decided I wanted to give another marathon a go. I went through some GI issues with a few, then got that issue straightened out. A few more years of triathlon, an injury, and then all of a sudden, I was getting older. Old enough and running long enough to worry that I was running out of time to PR, to break a certain number barrier.
I had a couple of good marathons (Richmond 2009 and 2010) and then another injury. Crap–the clock was ticking. Thus began my four marathons in the last 20 month cycle–none of them–not a single one, worth a damn. I’ve tried everything along the way to crack the marathon code, but apparently, it escapes me.
So today I am at a place where I can say, “marathon, you win.” Right now, I don’t have the mental fortitude to fight it anymore. Boston 2014? Nope, not gonna attempt it. I need some space.
For now, the marathon and I will have to work off memories. Not all of them have been bad, but enough that I don’t want to make more any time soon. It doesn’t mean I won’t be back, but right now, I’m in no hurry. I’m going back to shorter races for a while–10-milers, half marathons and even a 10k or two, because I’ve missed them. And I’m not so terrible at them, either. We’ll meet up again sometime, the marathon and I, but I’m setting no timetables. I’ll know when it’s right and when I’m ready.
How about you–ever have a race or certain distance become your nemesis?