1. You forget pretty quickly how horrible/painful it was.
2. There’s post-event blues.
*Obviously, this is a silly comparison as marathoning is way more rewarding than children…I mean, um, children are so much more precious and fulfilling…
You can go ahead and comment on what else is similar between running marathons and giving birth (naturally, I might add, ha). It seems very apt, though, as I’m already searching for another marathon that I can do better, even though I’m still a little sore from last weekend’s. And, I feel a bit lost and shiftless without a specific plan to follow. Hopefully, none of you are having more children just to get it “right” this time, but that is the call of another marathon close on the heels of the first.
I feel somewhat justified in pursuing it since I didn’t get to finish it the way I wanted to, and it’s extremely unlikely it would be the same set of unfavorable conditions (though this is Chicago, so anything could happen). Still, it seems silly. As Jen pointed out, I have the rest of my life to qualify for Boston. (I stick my tongue out at that statement, btw.) I do feel, though, that my fuzzy memory of how this will be so much better is like my recent baby fixation. I’m pretty sure I don’t want a third, and I have to only listen to the screams of my brawling children to reinforce that. But that evil Facebook recently floated up a a picture of my daughter when she was a baby. And seriously, doesn’t that make you want kids?.
There is definitely a post-race blues that happens after a marathon or significant race. You give so much time, energy, and thought into this one thing that when it’s over, you feel a sudden vacuum in your life. And while I am not saying that these blues are anything like postpartum depression, I do remember feeling a bit lost that this squalling, needy creature was the same that was so quiet and gentle in utero.
Getting back to it, though, I’m only a few keystrokes away from signing up for another marathon. In under 3 weeks. It seems crazy, yes, but I did the same thing last fall. Still chasing the BQ dream. Sigh. It seems more attainable this season since I trained so much harder this cycle. I also feel like it’s possible because I PR’ed last year at the second marathon. It was only by a handful of seconds, and I definitely took the first race easy, but I DID PR. So it makes me feel more hopeful about doing another marathon so close to last week’s. I would definitely not suggest, it but I’m just saying it’s not impossible.
There are some other considerations, though, as to why I’m pushing another marathon so close. Training in the summer is hard because it’s hot. That’s why some of our long runs will start around 530. Racing a marathon in heat sounds unbearable. June can be volatile weather-wise, and July/August unthinkable, which leaves May. I also want to do another marathon before September, where there are a couple “last chance BQ” races right before Boston registration opens. I don’t want to bank on that, so I wanted to try to squeeze in another chance.
My options–if I didn’t want to travel (which I don’t for cost reasons)–come down to the Schaumburg Spring Marathon mid-May and the Rockford Marathon at the end of May. The Rockford one is super small and slow (I checked the results from the last couple of years), and it was on “hiatus” last year–meaning it’s likelier to be slower/smaller. The Schaumburg one also takes place mostly in Busse Woods, which means there will be tree coverage even if it’s hot. It’s also less depressing running alone in the woods than running alone in the streets, so even if it’s small it won’t be a big deal. It also has a higher PR/race score on findmymarathon.com, which also notes that 13% of runners BQ. Plus it’s a shorter/easier drive. AND, it turns out another runner from my group is doing it. Schaumburg it is. I am having trouble actually committing and signing up. Give me a day or two.
Finally, recovery this week has generally been nice. I’m still a tiny bit sore/tight today, which surprises me. I did a very chill 3 miles with some old friends on Tuesday to start getting the blood moving. We have not run together since our 17 mile training run for Chicago in 2013. Yeah, it’s been almost 2 years. Regina, my fellow radish-leg Korean runner, has been intermittently injured, and Kelly just had a gorgeous little baby girl (her second kid). That’s her baby in the picture that you can’t see (I told you I need to work on my selfie skills. I got Regina blinking and yet another bad angle on my moonface. Sigh. Maybe I should look into blogger selfie classes. HA).
Anyhow, feel free to comment on other late spring races in the Chicago area, or other reasons you think distance running is like childbirth!