I couldn’t agree more with Frank Shorter, 1972 Olympic marathon gold medalist: “You have to forget your last marathon before you try another. Your mind can’t know what’s coming.” I have not felt the inspiration to blog and to be honest, have not really felt it in my running since that last post about Boston either.
One thing that triggered my inspiration to write was delivered by the mail carrier this week: 2011 Boston Marathon Racers’ Record Book and certificate of completion with my official time and place. Results on the web specifically state that they are unofficial until we receive this book and certificate in the mail. The B.A.A. is clever. They know that whether you had a good or bad race at Boston, the experience and the memories are the good things that we remember. By mid July, enough time has passed since the race so we forget how much it may have hurt. Now we have this record of wonderful memories, results, photos, and that certificate.
And to be honest, I have forgotten how painful my last 4 miles at Boston were. I mean, I know they hurt, but it’s not a vivid memory where I can practically still feel that pain. In May, I was still feeling it. But now, I just think about how I can better prepare for the next one. Yes, there will be a next one. I guess that’s the thing about runners. We just can’t stop trying to attain those P.R.s or reach whatever other goals we may set.
I have reviewed my training for Boston and have made notes about what to do differently when training for my next marathon in November. The marathon is such a major life event. Even if you are just running it for “fun” or running it with someone and helping to pace them, you still have hours, months, and many, many miles to devote to it. Marathon training, adequate sleep, and proper nutrition are all demands that end up taking time away from family, friends, work, school, and social life. When race day rolls around, I often think about all the time devoted to the training. That coupled with the pain during the race make me swear off marathons! Then enough time passes and I seem to be signing up for that next one. When will I learn?