iPhonegraphy: LA Marathon Edition

I FINALLY DID IT!  I ran a my first full marathon!

I’ve trained 4 times before.  And I’ve failed 4 times.  I had every excuse under the sun:  knee injury, deadlines, new puppy, you name it. Once even I gave up training because I wanted to sit on my butt and eat chicken wings.

But it finally happened at the Asics LA Marathon on Sunday March 9th.

I take that back.  It didn’t just happen. This time around I worked my butt off for it.

After months of long runs and carb loading (pasta diet is the best diet ever btw) I lined up with 21,828 runners to begin a 26.2 mile trek.  From the start I channeled my marathon spirit animal: the tortoise.  It didn’t matter how long it took, my only goal was to finish.

Taking it slow and steady I was able to soak much of the LA scenery as the course winded from Dodger Stadium down to the Pacific Ocean.  Even with all the awesome neighborhoods, the best sights were the people.  A few other characters along the way:

  • Runner in a Aztec warrior costume.  Wearing sandals too.
  • The pro speed walker who was passing up runners left and right (me included.)
  • Group of grandmas, wearing too much makeup and neon fanny packs, supporting each other to the finish line.
  • Little kids holding up signs way too big for them to cheer runners on.
  • Firefighters using fire hoses to cool off runners in the 81 degree weather.
  • Teen wearing a shirt that said: “I run this race for someone who can’t.”

As the hours passed I lost all interest in the surroundings as switched my attention to convincing my feet to move forward. Miles 20-24 were hard. My feet were saying, ‘ouch what the hell.’  My brain was thinking, ‘it would be wise to stop now.’  My heart shouted, ‘don’t listen to those other two and keep going.’

When I finally saw the ocean around the 25 mile mark, I don’t what came over me but I cried. And I cried hard.

I don’t think I’ll ever be able to put down in words the crazy emotional wave that came over me upon realizing that this crazy life goal of mine was about to be checked off my bucket list.  The feeling that I could do anything I set my mind to.  Believing I was unstoppable.  Yeah it was a beautiful feeling.

Still crying, I picked up my pace to cross the finish line. My time was an hour and a half more than I anticipated but I didn’t care. I finished. I could now call myself a marathon runner. =)

LA_Marathon_2014_color

left to right, top to bottom:

  1. A stranger salutes during the singing of the Star Spangled banner at Dodger Stadium
  2. Palm trees: The view above me for much of the race.
  3. Running by the beautiful Disney Building
  4. I’m in Hollywood baby!
  5. Getting some motivation from local cheerleaders in front of Mann’s Chinese theatre.
  6. Running on the Walk of Fame
  7. Lots of great street art everywhere
  8. My shiny medal
  9. Relaxing at the beach post marathon. Can’t feel my feet anymore at this point.

Not pictured: My post marathon meal, a bacon wrapped hot dog.