Tuesday, June 2, 2009

The Journey & Beyond

Lobster Head
No, that is not the name of a garage band (although, it's a good one). That was just one of the many names I came up with for fellow runners during the Rock 'n' Roll Marathon. I love people-watching and this was a great opportunity to do so! There were lots of Elvises Elviss Elvi. There were superheroes. There were wigs. There were people in funny hats. There was a man wearing a hat similar to the one below. I ran behind and/or ahead of him for enough miles that he earned the nickname "Lobster Head".

I can only imagine why he chose this particular hat to wear for 26.2 sweaty, grueling miles. Maybe he is from Maine. Maybe he loves lobster dipped in butter and that butter has made his arteries so clogged, now he has to run. Maybe his kids gave him this hat and expected him to wear it during his big race.

I don't know. All I know is that he was not going to beat me to the finish. I lost track of him around mile 18. He was probably clawing his way through the finish line long before I got there.

There was a woman I noticed around mile 4 who was legally blind. She was probably in her 60s and was using a white blind walking cane to guide herself along the route. I was humbled when I saw her. She was amazing! There was nobody running with her, calling out directions... at least not that I noticed. As I ran past her I said, "You're doing great!" I hope she didn't mind.

Then there was Old Guy. I only named him that because his shirt said, "Old Guys Rule". I figured if he can wear a shirt like that, I can call him Old Guy. He and I ran almost the whole race together. By together I mean, I'd pass him... he'd pass me... I'd pass him... he'd pass me. Hmmm... maybe he nicknamed me. I wonder what he called me... maybe "Snail Lady". I liked Old Guy because he is obviously a trooper and has a sense of humor.

My last favorite person was a lady I called Green Grandma. She was wearing a greenish shirt and was probably someone's beloved grandma. She was right behind me at the start line. She and I kept passing each other all along the route. I think I lost her around mile 13... she probably finished ahead of me too! I noticed that she had very awkward-looking form. But she was doing great!

Then there were those that became annoying around mile 20. But then everything and everyone became annoying around mile 20.

Like Stretchy. I called her that because every time I saw her, she was stretching her legs on the side of the road. I don't even remember seeing her run! I would pass her as she stretched. A few minutes later I would pass her again... as she stretched. How did she do that?!

Then there was Bouncy. Do I need to expand on the reason for that nickname? I have to say, she bounced much better than a lot of women I've seen. And I saw a lot of her bounciness because she kept running backwards. I think she was running with a less perky friend, as her coach or motivator. I'm sure she "motivated" many of the male runners behind us. Her backward-running bounciness got on my nerves big-time at around mile 24. You know... I'm pretty sure they make running bras in her size...

Back of the Pack
Being at the back of the pack is interesting and inspiring. It is there that you see the non-elite runners... those who are running to prove something to themselves, those to whom running does not come easy, those who make me want to keep running... without regard to obstacles, age, and ego.

I am SO tired! Yes, I'm sore... mostly in my thighs. But that's the "good" kind of sore. Yes, my heel still hurts. I expected that. And, I'm happy to report that my bad knee feels fine!!

My biggest hurdle right now is that I am physically tired! I think I could sleep for a couple days, wake up, drink a cup of coffee and sleep for a couple more days. I'm sure this is normal. It is, isn't it?

A Dingo Ate My Baby!
No. Not my baby... don't worry. That quote pops into my head just about every time I think of Australia. After Crocodile Dundee and Men at Work, that is. I had the great honor of being interviewed by Melanie Tait of Mel Tries to Run for her radio show at 105.7 ABC Darwin in Australia. She interviewed me about my experience as a new runner, as a mom, and as a first-time marathoner. She is as lovely in person (phone-person) as she is on her blog. I was apprehensive about doing a phone interview (I was super nervous) but she made me feel comfortable right away. I have to say... it was fun! Check out Melanie's blog if you haven't already!

That's all for now! I have to get to sleep. I really hope to catch up on everyone's blog posts by tomorrow! I've been so busy and tired that I have fallen behind on keeping up with my blogger friends' posts!


Lisa Slow-n-Steady said...

I guess running a marathon gives you lots of time to find interesting people out on the course.

I feel the same way (physically exhausted) after our 3 hr bike ride on Saturday and will probably be worse next week after the half-century. Tired all over.

Mel-2nd Chances said...

awesome that you did the interview, very exciting!! it amazes me to see what people will run in or with during a marathon... sounds like you're recovering well! Good news about the knee and hope the heel starts feeling better soon.

Melanie Tait (Mel Tries to Run) said...

Hey phone buddy!

I LOVED your descriptions of the different people you found on the run. HOw awesome is grandma? And Old Guy? And Sight Impaired Lady? Hasn't every runner got an amazing story? You really confirmed that for me last night. I HAVE to try and get that audio on my blog (or at least the ABC website) - I need to figure it out.

Thank you for that lovely shout out on your blog! Our interview was exactly what I needed to stay positive in spite of this injured foot :)

AKA Alice said...

I love Mel's (Mel Tries to Run) blog. How awesome that she interviewed you. I'm sure you did great.

LOL at your descriptions. The being tired thing passes. I think it's both physical and emotional/mental. Lots of energy went into preparing for the marathon. It takes a bit to recover from that.

Cris said...

Congratulations Sara! What an awesome accomplishment it is to finish one's first marathon!

tfh said...

I'm laughing-- this is sooo funny, esp. since when I was cheering on my husband in the marathon I would see the same runners over and over and came up with names for them that I actually used to cheer them on. ("Way to go feather!" "Nice job Miami!" "You're doing great Girls in Pink.") Luckily I bit my tongue when nicknames like Bouncy came up. ;)

MCM Mama said...

LOL at your nicknames!

Tired is normal. Heck, I was exhausted after my last half marathon.

Sarah said...

I somehow missed your previous post....congrats!!!! I loved all of your post-race pics. :)

X-Country2 said...

All great observations. :o)

This is why I run with music. I'd like to think I'd come up with creative ways like this to entertain myself, but I'd likely just repeat "this sucks this sucks this sucks" for 26.2 miles and go crazy.

joyRuN said...

I loved the descriptions! I don't come up with names for the people I end up running with, but it's funny how familiar they become after suffering through 26.2 roughly together.

Marathonman101108 said...

LMAO at your nicknames, especially "Bouncy." Where is she when I need her?! That is so cool that you were interviewed on the radio show. Oh, and I like the changes to your blog. Too bad we live so far apart...I'd love to run with you someday. You are an inspiration.

Patrick said...

Love it-- And we are all very proud of you!!

I will have to find a funny hat for my next race :)