endings can be sad, a relief, or a celebration, but usually an ambivalent combination of all three. marathon training is now approaching the finish line, of course this means that actual marathon racing is only 2 weeks from the starting line. and i am experiencing first date anticipatory anxiety. it is either going to be so bloody awful that i'll make excuses and want to stop everything before it gets too far, or things will feel effortless and "right" (no swearing/whining/self deprecation).
today was our final "long" run; 14 miles. however, "numerically & geographically challenged" (me) miscalculated the route, and our mileage was closer to 17. but this provided additional "reflection" time on beginnings, middles, and ends. during the first 10 miles (when endorphins were doing what they are supposed to), i felt sad at the impending loss of a familiar routine and regular contact with my buddy. however, around mile 15, 'empty-stomach-except-for-sports-beans' nausea, set in (yesterday, it was 'too-full-of-waffles-and-berries' nausea), and i began to look forward to the fact that this regularly scheduled discomfort-ing experience was time limited.
as with all journeys, there have been some surprises and disappointments along the asphalt. namely, that i am supremely perturbed that none of my clothes are any looser after all the intensive calorie burning aerobic activity i have endured. or that i am unable to overcome genetics. the reality is that no matter how many miles i clock, i will always run every single one of them on short, footballer's (british, not american) legs. "long", "lean", and "sinewy" is just not part of my DNA. and finally, i have experienced a chronic melancholy over the absence of "toe haematoma". conversely, i have been pleasantly surprised at the resiliency of my knees, state of mind, and stomach's ability to keep from surrendering oatmeal/granola/waffles into nearby bushes. i have also discovered a new post run/shower snack alternative to chips and guac; hummus and garlic pita chips.
more temporal mementos are the multiple tank tops' straps' cobweb, now seared into my back, and the candy corn tan line between my shorts and socks. for a truly lasting keepsake, i will always have a mark along my xyphoid process, where the heart rate monitor has chafed a scar into my skin.
i am looking forward to being able to ride my mountain bike more frequently. i am guaranteed some bruises.