In less than 48 hours, I’ll be running the New York City Marathon. And I’m not sure how to process things.
Over the past few months, I’ve sacrificed my social life, gotten slightly injured (and came back with vengeance), fundraised like my life depended on it, bought some granny sneakers (yes, I went with the Brooks) and cried on a bench.
It’s been some ride.
I’ve been through a lot, but I am still standing. Ya girl has heart. I started this series as a non-running runner and quite frankly, still am. I wish that I could say I’ve graduated to some higher echelon of elite runner-dom (is runner-dom even a word?), but that would be a lie.
The more emotional side of me is tempted to say something like, “After this 26.2 miles, there isn’t a bone in my body that wants to run another race: Marathon, half marathon 10K, or 5K. They can all go to hell!” Then I stop, take a few calming breaths—woosah. I have to remind myself that in the big scheme of things, the training wasn’t that bad. Running at 7:30 am on weekends builds discipline (says no one). After all, I know that I’ll be itching to set some physical goal for myself at some point (perhaps even in the near future). Enough whining.
Training builds mental strength, especially with bridges. Through this season’s training, I am supremely grateful to the Queensboro Bridge.
You see, the Queensboro Bridge is mile 15 of the New York City marathon. Over halfway through the race, people refer to this specific bridge as the point where you can expect to hit a wall. Understandably so—legs are heavy, the breath is heavy and 11 miles remain in the race.
Queensboro Bridge, I’m ready.
On almost all of my long runs, I traverse the Queensboro Bridge, so I have the privilege of knowing what’s ahead of me. My dear Queensboro Bridge, I will run you. Gently, of course. Every step that I take will be one step closer to the finish line. Your incline doesn’t intimidate me, nor does your mile-long distance make me shudder. Your rust is only confirmation that you are corroded—damaged, weakened. You can not consume me. Whether I run, walk or crawl you will be my bridge.
And run, walk, or crawl, this race will be my race.