Event races sometimes hold lotteries to choose their entrants. Lotteries give everyone a shot but limit the field so the crowds don’t get out of control. So when my younger brother suggested we enter the lottery for the Marine Corps Marathon in October, I wasn’t overly concerned. Until we got in.
Even though I have a tougher course to run in less than two months, the MCM seems like a bigger deal. There’s travel, hotels, crowds and the realization that all of a sudden I am running two marathons this year.
Marathon training narrows my focus to sleep, shoes and food. I nap every Saturday and Sunday, sometimes for an hour or more, and I’m usually in bed by 9:30. It’s like being a kid again in some ways, minus the total lack of responsibility and bedwetting. I obsess over food, both what I’ll be eating when I’m on the trails and my dinners. A new butcher shop in my neighborhood has treats like Korean-style pork and amazing french fries that motivate me to complete my second 2-hour run in two days.
Besides with my next meal I also obsess over shoes. Should I get more? Are the ones I’m wearing now comfortable? Do they look cool? What are other people wearing? Did I remember to double-knot my laces? If so, are they too tight? I need to stop.
I’ve done so much training for a trail marathon, I suppose I’m just thrown by the idea of doing a road marathon. Trail-running is physically intense but it’s also somehow a more easygoing atmosphere. I don’t want to step away from that.