It's been 3 weeks since I ran London. Looking back on the experience, it makes me think hard about the word NEVER.
When I crossed the finish near Buckingham Palace, the clock was 5:28. I didn't expect I'd finish in less than 6 hours. Honestly, I didn't have a goal other than to finish, but when I began the journey from East London, I decided I'd aim for 5:30.
When you run a race healthy physically, the journey to finish is all mental. It's the little things you tell yourself as you pass by strangers on the streets. My first inspiration was hearing a little British voice scream out in the cutest voice, "Go Miss Katie, go..." Ben, my friend from Chicago who was the other Komen runner in London told me I should get my name put on my singlet. Am I glad I did?! For 26.2 miles, I heard strangers call out my name and those were the words that carried me to the end.
When you run a marathon, it's like anything else you've done for the first time. It's full of ups and downs and surprises. But you know, I can honestly say this 'first time' was nothing but good things. At mile 5 I did feel some pain in my left knee but told myself I was imagining it.
My friend and colleague from work, Janet taught me a tip. She runs every mile for someone. I thought of so many people that day -- my parents, Mark, my friends, and the 90 or so donors I managed to hit up for sponsorship. I couldn't believe 3 emails is all it took to raise my goal. In fact I thought raising the money would be hard, running the 26.2 would be brutal and the whole experience would be enough for me to say, "I'll only do this one and NEVER do it again".
Never, say never.
I've signed up for another World Marathon Major race.... NYC in November