When I heard about other runners fulfilling their 20+ miles I was impressed. It seemed like the ultimate challenge before the marathon. Then I did it myself. It wasn’t easy. I walked at times. I had to catch my breath, stay focused, fuel. But I made it through.
Each time I ran a loop, did a few twist and turns. So even with the big 2.0 attached to my run it didn’t look that long on the map. Maybe it’s because I grew up with kilometers? But even 35km didn’t really mean anything to me. That is until I put it on a map. I first used one in France, from my Mom’s.
And that’s when I was like “Holy Cow! That’s a long way!”. I know how long it takes to drive it (about 30mns), I know how much the landscape changes going from the low elevations to the heart of the Pyrenees. I can run that far?
Then for the fun of it, I also did it here in the US. Starting from West Asheville.It looks like I ran run almost from home, past the airport and all the way to the next big town, aka Hendersonville. To which my husband said: “Well yeah, it’s 15 miles to my work”.
Putting my long runs in perspective really made me realize how much I had achieved. I never thought my legs would be able to carry me this far. I’ve had people telling me recently how good I will feel about myself when I finish the marathon. To be honest with you, yes I will feel so proud of myself. But I also already do. I think it doesn’t matter if one finishes a marathon at this point. To be able to train for it, especially when you think about the fact that there are no crowds to cheer you up during training, no water stations and only a handful of other runners if you’re lucky. So while I do plan to finish, I think that it goes beyond that. I am proud of the journey.