10/29/2012 Update

Even though it’s only been one day over two weeks since my last marathon, it feels like it could be two years.  I have not run since the marathon.  In retrospect, I think both my body and mind needed a break after the race.

I’ve enjoyed spending the extra time with family and friends.  I appreciate the support that both have given over the past eight months.  This marathon has taught me quite a few life lessons, especially being the first race that did not improve my personal best time.  Maybe I’m just getting older or perhaps I’m just trying to make myself feel better, but this was one of those times in which the journey was much more meaningful than the destination.  I didn’t reach my goal, but I learned a lot about myself.

It would be impossible to list all of the thoughts that have crossed my mind over the last two weeks, but here’s a little taste:

What went wrong?
What went right? 

Five marathons are enough, no more.
Maybe one more.  Seriously, I could run the Kansas City marathon (six days after the Prairie Fire marathon). 

It’s time to slow down and enjoy the experience, the finish time is not important.
What’s my training schedule to prepare to reach my goal in a marathon next April? 

Maybe I should try a triathlon.
Maybe I should try a half marathon.
Maybe I should just run lots of shorter races. 

What if I never feel like running again?
I can’t imagine waiting much longer to start running again.

Mom has been on mind quite a bit lately as well.  It would be an understatement to say that the last few days have made me realize how much I miss her.  As our children grow older, I appreciate all of the sacrifices my parents made for me and my siblings.  I will be forever grateful for their patience and positive influence in all of our lives.

During this period of self-reflection, I discovered one item that I don’t even remember but seems a bit poetic at this point in my life.  As I was looking through some old items from running in high school and college, I found an English paper I wrote my high school sophomore year.  I don’t claim that its great writing or even makes much sense, but I simply loved the subject:  the benefits of marathon running and reasons why people are so attracted to marathons.

Whether you believe in destiny, a higher power, or karma, it’s moments like discovering this paper that gives one a sense that sometimes the universe works the way it’s designed.   Even when things don’t work like you think it should.  Even when you lose a loved one.  Even when you fail to reach a goal that you’ve work so hard to reach.  It’s then when you realize those loved ones and dear friends that you can always count on no matter what happens.

Reaping the Benefits of the Art of the Marathon