The Lucky Ones

Was this the title of a movie lately? Maybe a Nicholas Sparks book? Well, anyways…

I’m still riding the marathon high and post-marathon depression hasn’t hit, yet. This is fantastic because the Dance Moms season finale was last night and the two compounded together could have easily sent me into despair.

Let me tell you marathon + friend endorphins are crazy. I slept maybe 4 hours Sunday night and only drank maybe 3 oz of coffee on Monday and I made it through the whole day. Can someone bottle this stuff for residency?

I think I need a temporary tattoo intervention...

I think I need a temporary tattoo intervention…

I can’t remember if I blogged a whole lot about training for the Eugene Marathon, but there were two overarching themes to the whole “season,” if you will…

First, it was always fairly easy as I felt like “one of the lucky ones.” And, second, I finally felt like a long distance runner and not just someone who likes to exercise and sort of likes to run long but not really that long because it gets old after a while.

In training for past marathons, I’ve definitely had a good many runs where I was complaining, scared of the workout, didn’t want to run 20 miles, and so on and so forth. That didn’t happen this time. This came from two changes in my outlook: 1) I realized this was sort of the last hurrah for hard training for a while and 2) I realized how lucky I was to be doing this.

Two of my friends, Jocelyn and Ali, got fairly (or very) sick this spring. Both haven’t been able to run as much as they would have liked (or, sometimes, at all).

Ali running last fall. Ali, I had to steal this pic of the internet of you. Hope that's ok...

Ali running last fall. Ali, I had to steal this pic of the internet of you. Hope that’s ok…

Jocelyn. A doubt you've seen her on this blog before.

Jocelyn. A doubt you’ve seen her on this blog before.

Seeing them being “taken out of the game” under circumstances fairly out of their control made me realize how lucky I was to have three things align: my health, my motivation to train, and the time to train. It’s not often that those three stars align and I realized that I was pretty much one of the luckiest people in Manhattan to be able to say I had each of those three things.

There was a distinct moment in a workout where this felt all too true. I was doing 3 x 2 miles on the track, which is a pretty hard workout, I think. I was in the midst of my 2nd one and Jocelyn, who was on her first runs after having to take about a month off, came up to the track. I thought how much Jocelyn would probably want to be in my position (well, maybe, can you vouch for that, Joc?) and that I got to be the lucky one to be doing that track workout.

And then I also got my own paparazzi for that workout...

And then I also got my own paparazzi for that workout…

On top of the “lucky” feeling, I also had this sort of “I feel like a marathoner” moment after one of my long runs. In the past, I’ve never been one to really love the long run. Its long (duh), can get a bit monotonous and boring, and it takes a chunk out of your weekend. This time around I was lucky enough (yet again) to have buddies for most long runs, making them more effortless than usual. In particular, on my 18 mile run two weeks before the Eugene Marathon, I ran two loops of Central Park during the middle of that run. The hills on the first loop felt a bit laborious; those on the 2nd loop felt like a breeze. It felt like the run got better as it went along, like mile 15 was more effortless than mile 5. It was the first time I got what so many of you like about the long run and made me think that this marathon might actually go pretty well.

During that long run...

During that long run, loop 1. Thanks, Lora, for the photo!

Same Run, loop 2

Same Run, loop 2. Thanks, Lora, for the photo!

Those two things made this marathon distinctly different than the others.

I promise I’ll stop being so nauseating soon. I’m probably peaking in life right now – no real responsibilities, healthy, and people are basically congratulating me on existing. Fourth year of med school is the bomb. Talk to me in August and the unicorn won’t be so glittery anymore. It’ll be probably more like an angry mare.

TELL ME: BEST TIME YOU’VE EVER HAD TRAINING FOR A RACE? UNRELATED – HAVE YOU EVER PAINTED AN ENTIRE APARTMENT AND SHOULD I ATTEMPT THIS MYSELF?

Until next time…

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14 thoughts on “The Lucky Ones

  1. Thanks Meggie! And I’m sorry for all those times I had to cancel on you this winter. But proud of you for getting yourself out the door & running without me! Even though I was sad I couldn’t be there, I was happy for you!!

    Spoiler alert: Turns out I don’t need to train at all, and I am a professional athlete. (KIDDING FOR FUTURE PEOPLE READING THIS COMMENT.)

  2. Painting is like a long run. You have to mentally put it into smaller runs, have music/podcasts or have friends with you. I actually like to paint – weird probably.

  3. Completely agree with the attitude – I took the same one into my first marathon (NJ) yesterday and also came out with a BQ 🙂 Always good when you can stay in the moment and appreciate what you have….

  4. First of all, apparently Jocelyn doesn’t even need to train. What is that??

    Anyway. Sometimes when I got upset about my times or how hard a run felt this training cycle, I reminded myself that I couldn’t even run down the block this time last year. When people complained about the heat last summer, I wanted to scream that I would trade places with them in a heartbeat. We don’t really know how lucky we are until we have something taken away from us, and it’s great that the stars aligned for you! Now onto residency, soon to be Dr. Meggie!

  5. Pingback: something to…(II) | Camping Out In America

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