Yesterday I ran my first marathon. It was hard. Like, what the hell have I done, I am so stupid, can’t I just quit? hard. But I did it.
What I only realised on an intellectual level, was that running a marathon is ultimately a test to see what you are made of, like those native ceremonies where they go out in the desert and have to find their spirit animal or like Ramadan or Lent. Except that with a marathon you pay 85$ and get a gawdy medal at the end. Now I would love to say that I sailed through the 4 and a quarter hours it took me to run the 42 km. But that just ain’t so. Although I did finish and I am proud, I honestly thought I would do better. I thought it would be easier. I thought I could finish in under four hours.
Now I know I am being ridiculous on some level. I won some mental battles out there, really. In the middle of the race, I so wanted to quit. My legs felt like they had been roasting in an oven all day and I was soaked to the bone. But I didn’t and that has to count for something, right?
But, I don’t know. If the whole point of a race like this is to learn something about yourself, well then I learned that I think life should be easier than it is and that I have a hard time when it isn’t. I will finish, sure, but unfortunately, it won’t be with grace or in the way that I wanted to finish. Still, I am grateful to have done it. It is always good to know what your up against inside your own head.