To Run 26.2 or Not to Run …. That is the Question

One of the reasons to go to Austin – Food Trucks!!

I received an email this morning about a movie called Spirit of the Marathon II in my inbox. I loved the first one. It highlighted seven runners who were training for the Chicago Marathon. Some of them finished the training and completed the race. Some didn’t. It came out before I ran my first marathon, so I didn’t see it until after I completed two. I think I checked it out on Netflix or something. I love to hear why people run marathons and live vicariously through their marathon stories.

I’m excited about this sequel. They are rolling it out on June 12 ONLY at theatres all over the country. I already bought my ticket. For more information and locations in your area, see this website. People run marathons for all kinds of different reasons. Some run to win. Others run for a cause. Still others run just to prove that their age has not defined them. A marathon is a life-changer. The sequel will also follow seven different runners and record their journeys through training and running the race.

Spirit of the Marathon II Trailer

I posted a link to the movie in my running coaches’ Facebook group this morning. I made the comment that maybe I might get inspired to run another marathon … maybe …. I’ve run three full marathons. The first one I ran was in Chicago in 2009. It is a phenomenal race. The year I ran there were 47,000 marathoners in the race. I ran a second marathon in Champaign IL and a third in Little Rock AR. When I hit the 20 mile mark in Little Rock, I decided not to run any more full marathons. I had forgotten my running shoes and wore some brand new shoes on a very hilly course. I didn’t have blisters, but my heel was hurting. I finished the race, but it took over 6 hours, and it was brutal. I had to drive home that night. It was a miserable day all around. Oh, yeah… and, when I crossed the finish line, they had run out of medals. That was two years ago. My running coach replied to my post today with the thought that if I’d run another one, she’d run with me. She gave me two options. We could do Tulsa in November or Detroit in October.

Me, right after my first 26.2 miler in Chicago
Me, right after my first 26.2 miler in Chicago

So, I started looking at websites today. I can’t believe I’m actually considering doing another 26.2 miler. And, after I see that movie next week, I know I’ll be considering it. The Tulsa one looks really interesting because of the timing. I hate training in the August heat in Memphis, and November would push the 18 or 20 mile runs back into October. That’s a little more comfortable. Plus, I can drive to Tulsa and then maybe head south to visit my family in Louisiana for a Thanksgiving vacation. I’d have to fly to Detroit. The cool thing about Detroit is you actually run into Canada on the course, so it’s an international course. You even have to have a passport to run the race. That’s kind of cool. But I’d rather drive than fly.

I think my coach is crazy, though. She texted me and said Tulas is FLAT!! When I read the reviews, everybody talked about how killer the hills were. Either she’s trying to trick me, or she’s delusional. It could be that the hills in Austin where she lives are so bad that now she thinks Tulsa is flat. We are also discussing doing a 10- miler in October in Austin due to some great airline specials between Memphis and Austin in the fall. I was concerned that a 10-miler would screw up my training plan for a full marathon, but she said we could do the 10-miler and then add on some miles afterward. I told her that I’d tried that before …  it wasn’t going to happen. She assured me my coach would make sure it did. I told her my coach was a b*tch. So, we’ll see what transpires. Below is the link to the map for the 26.2 miles in Tulsa. Ugh …. that’s a long way.

Me, Jess and her buds in Austin. Would love to see them again.
Me, Jess and her buds in Austin. Would love to see them again.

Tulsa Marathon Map

Now I’m trying to figure out if I have it in me to train for another full marathon. It means doing long runs on Saturdays, early nights on Fridays, long naps on Saturday afternoons. It does make me get into a more disciplined mode of eating and training. I have to. I can’t fake 26.2 miles. I can fake 13.1 since I’ve run them before and I’m in decent shape, but a marathon is a whole different ball game. Your body only holds enough glucose for 18 miles, so there’s this wall that you have to deal with when you really aren’t in the mood to deal with one. At least I know the drill. I know what it takes, and I know how wonderful it feels to cross the finish line. If I do the 10 -miler as a warm-up, I’ll get to go to Austin and stay with some of Jess’s friends, a bunch of twenty-somethings. That will be fun and will make me feel young and crazy. I could use a little of that. Besides, I have a goal of running 1000 miles this year, and I’m behind. Maybe a marathon is what I need to get back on track. That Thanksgiving dinner will be so sweet following a marathon. I won’t even have to feel guilty taking a long nap afterwards. I will have earned it.

6 Comments on “To Run 26.2 or Not to Run …. That is the Question

  1. I know the 10-miler you’re talking about–I ran it last year. It is REALLY hilly, and it covers similar ground as the middle section of the Austin marathon. It’s a beautiful course, but tough. Good luck with whatever you decide!

  2. Good luck if you decide to do another race! I think it’s a great idea to put your previous one to rest for good. I am running Chicago this October and it will be my first marathon. I cannot wait!!

  3. I think you should do the 26.2 in the fall. I am biased and think you should do the Detroit Marathon because I will be doing the half. However Tulsa sounds pretty good too…

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