Bad Ass Marathon

I have a friend who thinks I am a bad ass. I haven\’t known how to respond to that since I don\’t feel like a bad ass.

However….after today, maybe I do.
Wouldn\’t someone who has run, as of today, 100 marathons in her life be a bad ass? Or who ran a 100 mile race? Or became a millionaire? Or who finished monastic formation? Or successfully accomplished FIRE (financial independence retire early)? Or who had been sober for 34 years? Or hold down a job at Starbucks at the age of 62? Or, many other things I have accomplished in this life.
So, someone who completed a 600+ mile virtual race across Tennessee, in half the allotted time, ought to be a bad ass. 
Well, a few days ago, I did the math and saw that I was getting down to the end of my race across Tennessee.  A tiny thought went through my mind, \”Do a marathon to finish it off.\” Along side of this impending finish was the fact that I had failed to complete a virtual marathon during April because when I had got to 22 miles, my feet hurt and I quit because a virtual race didn\’t mean anything.
Well that is a good idea: finish off a 600+ mile/ 2 month effort with a celebration by running a marathon. Be a bad ass! But also, I felt a little resistance because of that failure in April. Should I try this again? I didn\’t want to feel like a failure again. I haven\’t done that many miles in one run for awhile. Can I do it?
To sign up for the Great Virtual Race Across Tennessee was an impulse from my inner being to begin with. It felt so right. And, 20,000 other people, and some dogs, have joined me. My success at carrying out the project was effected by alignment with my inner being. My energy was lined up with my inner being and momentum was generated to complete the project. In fact, I have been obsessed with getting miles every day, even walking on the treadmill to complete miles in the afternoon after a shift at work.
But, to do a marathon by myself, I needed more than a vague idea. I needed to strongly intend to do it. I needed emotional momentum. I needed to line my energy up with the idea. This means some practical activities like getting all my drinks ready the night before. Taping my toes. Setting my alarm clock. It is hot here so a person has to get up early to finish running a marathon. Still, I had to sit down with my journal last night and explore my fears. I had to complete a focus wheel to raise my vibration in relation to the idea. I had to segment intend by remembering how I felt during a 50 mile race last November when I had been in the zone and finished trouble free. I had to think honestly about this upcoming segment and my intentions for it. Was the idea an ego idea that would fail or an inner being idea which would succeed? It is up to me to decide and then  line up with the energy. These energy activities are to experience the success in advance so it is the cause. 
The alarm went off at 4 am. I did have to decide at that point whether to get out of bed. That has happened before too, not making it out of bed I mean. But I did get the idea of how I would feel if I completed a marathon versus how I would feel if I went back to sleep. I remembered how good it feels to run in the early morning coolness. I chose getting up.
I had a cup of coffee. The bad ass idea went across my mind. A bad ass has to get up early if she wants to do a bad ass thing. I did a meditation on physical well being. I felt much better. I felt like I just needed to be easy about it. I grabbed my hydro pack out of the refrigerator and made it out the door by 5 am.
I had planned to complete the marathon in two parts. First running from my front door and then going to a park with many trees during the hotter part. The first part went super well. It went so well that I extended it to 18.3 miles before getting back to home base. It was mostly cloudy and I felt appreciation that such a cool morning had been given to me. 
When I got home, it was still cloudy and I had to decide where to complete the run. To go back out from my house or go to the park. I thought about how clouds can suddenly vanish and I thought about how much easier it is to run in the shade. I picked the shade. So I hopped in my car and drove the two miles to the park. Good choice. The clouds did disappear and by the time I had finished off the final eight miles, it was 87F. Course map (the straight line from green dot to hash mark is in the car, but not included in miles):
What surprised me however was that my feet and legs didn\’t reach any devastating level of pain. For the run, I had plenty of emotional momentum to keep going, but also, I wasn\’t in trouble with blisters. I didn\’t bonk.My feet didn\’t hurt. My hip didn\’t hurt. It was amazing. It has been a long time since I have felt so in the zone for a long distance effort. 
The Great Virtual Race Across Tennessee is now complete. I will finish in roughly 1,590th place of 20,000. I feel like a bad ass.
I have the corona virus to thank for my amazing athletic feats of the past 3 months. Without corona there wouldn\’t be these virtual races. Actually, the corona virus has been very good to me. Everything about me is thriving at the moment. My mode of existence has shifted. There are many people who are doing amazing things during this corona virus time. Not everybody is worried about sickness. Just look around you and you will see them.
Stay tuned. I have another virtual race coming in two weeks. It includes a 50k race which has to be done in one effort. 
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For No Good Reason….

….I jog walked 26.25 miles today. I saw a green frog and thousands of baby crabs. I saw the 2 old people I always see. I passed a man several times who appeared to be doing the same thing I was doing.

But the real deal was the mental. It took about 15 miles for me to remember transcendence. I\’m not out there doing miles for training. I don\’t need to think about work or Boston or various resentments I have. I let go and tried to just do miles and I switched my mind to spirit mode.

Around 20 miles I began to struggle. Now my left foot hurts. It is getting warm. How much is enough? When should I stop? I need a mind that can hang in there; maintaining forward motion at whatever speed. As I passed my car at 22.5 miles, I kept going. Just do\’in it. I looped around at the far end of the course so that the next time I got to the car, I\’d be done.

I have no agenda as a runner. I\’m not in solidarity with anyone. I\’m not charitable.

I am spirit. Grace means most to me. And so, I turn my work issue over to God and let the outcome be what it is.

Private Marathon – 2013 #3

Today was my third private marathon of 2013. If I walk 13.1 miles tomorrow, it will be my 5th reverse Goofy.

I never know when I am starting out if I will make it to 26 miles. I just have enough water and gel and an energy bar. Then it depends mostly on how my feet feel. Then there is time and weather. Most important, it depends on my mind. I noticed today that I tell myself I\’m going to quit right up until I get over the 16 to 17 mile hump. Then, by the time I get to 19 or 20, if my left heel is not in trouble, I find I cannot waste the time and effort it took me to get that far. So I keep going. When I get to 23 to 24 miles, I will keep going despite any pain, but I might walk it out. All this is mental work. It is called going through the wall.

During this run, I was thinking about the cost of marathon races. Almost all of them cost around $100, whether you eat their food or not. Then there is transportation cost and sometimes hotel cost. All this is necessary to get an official result and a medal. My private marathons have the same human fuel cost, but are otherwise free and take much less travel time and much less hassling with people.

I am not really training for anything right now. I run the miles because I want to. Doing miles is somehow wired into my mental circuitry. I said the strangest prayer ever today: Dear whoever is running my mind and making decisions, if you want me to keep going, you will have to do it.

Somehow I kept going, in fact was not able to stop.

I\’ve been reading brain books. The latest one \”Brain Wise\” by Churchland is easy to read and very informative. I almost understand how an aware self can emerge from neuronal patterns of habit, memory and survival needs. I am in awe of the realization that more than 90% of my thought life is completely unconscious. and almost all of my behavior is originated in survival mechanisms.

Here is my first Marathon Maniac group photo taken at the Navy Marathon last week in Corpus Christi. I am in the yellow sweatshirt. There were several more Maniacs at the race but they didn\’t happen to make the photo.

And here is an awesome picture of me at Seabrook Lucky Trails 2 weeks ago. Notice I purchased this photo (no watermark). I bought a 5×7 so my home scanner would do a decent job with it.