12.19.2005

Why I Run

I've completed three marathons now- Chicago, Nashville, & Honolulu, but it wasn't until finishing the last one that I would actually consider myself a "marathoner". The first one was a trial, just to see if I could do it. The second was to prove that the first wasn't a fluke. The third confirmed my status-I am a marathoner.

Of course, I'm pretty sure anybody could do at least one, granted the average person may not finish quite as fast as I did (yeah that's a challenge), but the first one is not about time-it's about getting from start to finish. In fact, if your reading this, I think you should pick a race and start training. Chalk it up as a life accomplishment, or a good reason to get in shape, or bragging rights. Seriously, it will be worth it, when's the last time you ran through a finish line with hundreds or even thousands of people watching and cheering for you? Or how long has it been since you've felt the feeling of accomplishing something you weren't totally sure you could finish? It's nice...really nice!

Maybe you need some inspiration. Well, I can tell you why I got into it. I've talked about my life goals list (running with the bulls and such); completing a marathon wasn't on the list outright. I considered it more like a wildcard entry, or a TBD. Mostly, Beth wanted to do one, so we signed up together and started training for the Chicago Marathon. Honestly, I was more than a little tentative, but Beth, she was dead set. Chicago is a running city, people are running all the time, there are designated running routes, and really good running stores-it was a great place to train.

On October 10, 2004 we and 40,000 other people lined up and waited for the gun to fire. The atmosphere was unique and filled with adrenaline. It's feels good to stand with thousands of other people who are all there sharing the same goal as you have. The race itself was awesome, Beth and I started out together and ran the first few miles together, and then we started running our own race. Every mile or two there was a band playing, and spectators where just about everywhere cheering you on. Word was that 1 million people came to watch the race. Beth and I had our very own personal fan-Beth's dad came to watch us all the way from Canton, Ohio. I think it's kind of poor taste to talk about your time if you aren't asked-but what do I care. I finished with a time of 3:52:56, and Beth came in strong, smiling, and crying with pride at 5:14. Not a bad morning. If your wondering about the winner's time, it was a rediculous 2:10 or so.

I may have got into running at the suggestion of my wife, but the more I ran the more inspiration I found to keep running. Team Hoyt is a big one. You really oughta check these guys out. If you need a real life analogy of what Christ does for us daily this is it. (www.teamhoyt.com) And the girl in the picture is Sarah Reinertsen, and this is her after she finished running a marahthon. Did I mention that she also bicycled over 100 miles, and swam 2 miles. All of this in one race. That's right she is an IRONMAN. (www.iamsarah.org)


There are other reasons I run, but the main reason I run is because I am able.

8 comments:

f1rststory said...

wow John...very cool. A lot of what you said is the same reason I do some things. Like eating, for example, I eat b/c I am able. ;) As for the running, I think I could do it, but to know going into it, there's no chance for me to win makes it hard for me. Plus the fact that you're timed etc. I'm a 5K guy, after my 20-30 minutes (depending on race/weather/shape) I'm ready for a motor or something. Which is why I started MXing. I think I realy can win a race on it when I start competing. Of course, I'll have to sanction and sponsor the race myself and limit the number of entries (which increases my odds) and make my own track, but I could win a race like that. Now that, my friend is...what's the word??? Inspirational...no, that's not it...

Wow, this could've been a post on my site...

sekondstory said...

I think I would like to run a marathon but the longest I have ever ran is 6 miles and then I thought I was going to die. Can you take a break in the middle of it and walk or is that a total loser thing to do. It does seem to be just out of reach for me. Could I pull the vacarious card out for this one too?

Johnny T said...

There is no reason you can't run a marathon for yourself. Did I tell you that the only race I had ever run before Chicago was a 5k a couple months prior? 6 miles is a good start-and there are plenty of strategies that include mid race stretching or walking the water breaks. I have a training program that starts with 3 mile runs 18 weeks out form the race. The longest training run is a 20 miler. Most people say if you can run 15 you can finish a marathon. If you can do 3 you can finish 6. If you can do 6 you could probably finish a half marathon.
I say suck it up pick a race and commit to training.

Tonya said...

I don't know if i have it in me to run a race that long...i have trouble finishing a mile! i have always had poor endurance, especially if there is a hill involved & I haven't been able to really run since i broke my ankle. it usually hurts after about 5 minutes, but the challenge is there, and perhaps someday i WILL rise to your challenge and run a marathon...probably not, but there's always the possibility that i might. and if i do, i will most definately post about it :)

01cent said...

Well, you know I'm not going to run a marathon, but I'm mentally training for the Special Olympics run in February or March. I ran 2 weeks ago and then it got cold so I'm not doing anything for a while. Maybe if I had a great place to run like you do I could get inspired everyday, but looking at all the middleaged potatoe eating woman all the time makes me want to join the ranks of mountain girl and do as they do....eat, eat, and train to eat some more carbs.

sekondstory said...

ok. the 6 miles was in college, 1 mile would kill me today, but you might be inspiring me to start running again. We are at a much better place for me to run, near ETSU and the VA. However, I might start on the tread mill where its not so dang cold! I have the desire, we'll see where that takes me.

sekondstory said...

J.T,
Check my blog and see what it looks like now. Are you using window for your browser?

f1rststory said...

fine - if the woman runs, you know I have to, too. thanks john...