Tuesday, October 05, 2004

The 2004 Portland Marathon

Pain and pain, singing every song I know till the only song left in the entire history of rock and roll is that Allman Brothers song which, who knew? has only one line OH LORD I FEEL LIKE I'M DYING, and a guitar riff.

My knee began hurting almost immediately, just after the one mile mark. I bargained with god, all of them, but I cant quite remember what promises I made... I just kept running though. Around mile 8 or 9 it stopped hurting me, or I stopped noticing, and I managed to finish out the marathon. I just cant believe I held out. My finishing time was 4:48:51, or 11:01/mile and I cant say I am not traumatically disappointed.

I mean, I am really glad to have completed it, and yeahyeahyeah, I am grateful that I have legs that work cause there are starving kids in China and all that... but in the last couple days I have to admit that I am just not very proud of my performance no matter how peppy-talky I get with myself.

So yeah... I got to cross the finish line despite all my meditation on positive imagery mutating into mental images of my knee falling off. I really, really didn't think I would make it. And I did, and my friends were there to meet me, and I cried, and then Kate cried and gave me flowers and I got a medal and a t-shirt and, eventually a big bad chip on my shoulder about the whole event plus a set of DEAD LEGS to beat all hell. I still cant walk. All those little bones in the feet and muscle fibers, brutally abused.

So maybe its best that yesterdays entry got zapped. Maybe it wasn't quite accurate anyway, even if it was the best piece of expository writing on the marathon experience in the history of the world. I am totally humbled and have learned a lot and am really looking forward to going out for a long, long run with no training pressure and no pedometer and no time clock.

And am looking forward to focusing everything I learned this year into next years marathon, including putting to rest the infantile notions that prevent me from acknowledging when its time to quit.

But I will tell you what, that marathon running, that is one hell of a work out.

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