My thighs have finally stopped screaming. The pictures have been displayed and the stories have been told. My last big race of the season is now officially behind me.
On Sunday I ran a season’s best at The Scotiabank Toronto Waterfront Marathon and raced stronger than I had in any distance this entire year. It was a tremendous way to close off my 2013 campaign. And believe me when I say I wrote copious notes on what I did leading up to race day so that I can be as ready for the next time.
This time of year is always a tad troublesome for me. Without any more big races it’s a nice reward to be able to just run for fun. But I miss the adrenaline, impetus, and incentive of the next big race. In truth, I already have a hotel booked in Hamilton for the Around The Bay Road Race in March. Yet I must also admit to having given sincere thought while running Sunday’s marathon of rechristening my blog “My Life As A One-Time Ultramarathoner”. Now however that I can properly climb down a flight of stairs, I realize how that moniker just doesn’t feel right. I’m not done yet.
For many runners though there comes a time when that decision is made. When to step down. To stick with shorter distances and fun runs. For some the underlying reason is physical. For others the human psyche plays a factor — it just becomes too difficult to mentally tough out yet another long training run for yet another (ultra)marathon. And if I were to eventually make that decision I wonder which of these arguments would frustrate me more.
But this morning as I ran the dark city streets pushing passed some lingering tightness in my quads I relished the feel of freedom. That sense of being on top of the world because I have my health. Because I have people who support my crazy affection for this sport. And I remembered how much I love building toward the next big goal in my running life.
So perhaps I’ll be one of the lucky ones. Someone who can run whatever distance he chooses for as long as he chooses.
For now the relevant truth that remains is that we all must cherish what we have in this moment and hold onto good thoughts for what the future will bring.