Saturday, December 12, 2009

Rocket City Marathon 2009

This post is just a quick snapshot of my post-race thoughts. I'll post a more detailed race report later. Gun time results are available on the Run Rocket City web page, Overall and Age Group 1-39 and Age Group 40+. HTC does such an awesome job of scoring races. Thanks Carl and other volunteers!

Quick Summary
3:11:11 gun time. I'll know chip time later, but it's probably no more than 10 seconds faster. That was good enough for a BQ, and I intend to run Boston in 2011. As always when I finish a race, I believe I could have and should have run it faster. But please do not mistake that comment for disappointment. I was overcome with joy to the point of tears when I finished! I'm still learning how to leave everything on the race course, and I haven't figured that out yet.

Thanks to Dink and Suzanne Taylor and Fleet Feet of Huntsville for this amazing event that benefits the whole city! Thanks also to HTC. Thanks to Huntsville Police Department for their support of this event. Thanks to all the volunteers for their support. I can't possibly name them all! Thanks to TreeTrunkRick and good friend Madelyn Patton for serving us a much needed post race snack!

Thanks to my lovely wife Leigh for all her support during training and the race today. I cannot overstate how important her support of this crazy hobby of mine is to me. She sure tolerates a lot. And not only that, she encourages and helps me. She's pretty stinkin AWESOME. I love you!

Thanks to my buddies Mark Freeman and Matthew Davis for sharing endless miles with me training for this event. We discussed everything from the mundane to weightier matters such as the existence of God and the importance of Jesus and the cross and other teachings of the Holy Bible. (I'd mention specifics, but that totally violates the runner's code.) The friendships forged while running are strong and get stronger with miles. That's really what running is about to me.

Thanks to Carl Smith for being a fixture on my Sunday morning runs. He's always there. I look forward to that run every week (well, except for tomorrow -- I'm taking tomorrow off(: ).

Thanks to Eric Charette for giving me some solid advice and encouragement along the way. He showed a good deal of interest in my progress and helped with constructive advice. I certainly look up to him.

Thanks to Mike Greene for believing in me. He believes I'm capable of more than I believe I'm capable of. Sometimes, he convinces me that he's right. Mike, I'm praying for a speedy recovery for you.

The marathon definitely can become larger than life. I allowed that to happen this year. I'll have to improve on keeping things in perspective.

It's a crazy idea. It's an amazing amount of stress on the human body. It's a test of the mind and body. It requires months of preparation. The distance MUST be respected. If you have a bad day, you can't just run another marathon next weekend. It requires sacrifice, self-discipline, dedication, and doing stuff you don't want to do. It requires tolerance for pain with common sense to avoid ignoring injury. And yet, I really believe that most anybody can do it.

I'm still in some state of disbelief that I actually did it!!!!


joe positive said...

great job! I looked for you at the start but didn't see you. And you finished almost 4min in front of you, so I certainly didn't see you during the race :-) Looking forward to your report.

reachdown said...

Hah! My little secret is that I was in the port a potty line until 7:58!! Unless you were there in that line, too, you didn't see me. That's as close as I've ever come to being late for a start. I was panicking a little, but I had to get that done!

mgreene said...

Eric, an unbelievable time (well, not for you). Running less than two years to Boston Qualify!. I have no doubt you'll soon have a sub 3 hr marathon in you. Once again, goes to show what someone can do that has determination and refuses to make excuses!

siriusultrarunner said...

You did all of the hard work I believe that this is just the first success in a line of many to come.

Anonymous said...

Congrats to you, Eric! I didn't know your name so it was a great surprise to see you show up at the food line and introduce yourself. A sub-3hr Boston marathon is closer than you think! My wife and I encourage you to find many ways to thank your wife for HER support of you.