Yesterday, I crossed my second marathon finish line after 4:24 hours of running. That’s officially 1 hour faster than I did it in 2005. And this time, I crossed that line with no ice packs wrapped around my knees nor a heavy dose of painkilling drugs in my body.
A heavy dose of gratitude hit me when I was at the 17 km mark. A flashback to my first marathon overwhelmed me. It was that same little hill where my knee decided to give me incredible amounts of pain in 2005. When I climbed it this time, no pain! I started to get choked up as I ran to the top of it as I realized this – to the point I had to refocus on my breathing. I remember saying to myself “you’re actually going to do it this year!”
And I did. But not alone. It’s what I’m going to call my “not-so-personal best” because I’m not the only one that can celebrate this finish.
Rob Tubajon – my trainer extraordinaire – went above and beyond all expectations I had. He pushed me when he knew I needed it (“Matt Corker alert – You get an extra 8 km today”), helped me perfect my running technique through an amazing training program, and made himself available when I needed him. Thank you for being there for the last 15 weeks and at the finish line sir.
EJ Runners - the homemade cookies, the laughs on the 8 am runs, the extra track sprints, and the good friendships that evolved made training more fun than I thought it would be. Their tenacity was infectious and so needed on race day.
Rana, Carla, Joe, Caitlin, the VBs, Mike, Jess & Jurgen – it was their “you got this” cheering (and their obnoxiously loud cowbell) that turned each time I saw them on the course into a burst of new energy. Their familiar smiles were more powerful than they probably knew.
Sir Wesley George – in one run, he inspired me to be faster than I ever thought I could be. I am now a forefoot running convert because of him.
The great people I work with at lululemon athletica - not only did they create my race outfit, their amazing tunnel of cheering at the Burrard Street bridge was brilliant. It was a blur of blue love with hilarious signs. Thanks for the mental (and physical) boost both there and scattered around the course. Special mention to Ben Jackson who, on my second day on the job, pushed me to set my marathon goal in the first place.
My yoga instructors – they taught me to breathe when I was at my edge, calm my mind in my most challenging positions, and be generous with my body. Yoga was not just cross-training for my body. It was cross-training for my mind. Special thanks to Caroline, Christie, and Tedi for all the hamstring love.
My fam – my Dad’s smile through anything, my Mom’s ability to start – no matter how late in the game, Doug’s endless support (and rad laugh), and Steph‘s constant source of inspiration and unconditional love. They created an environment for me to succeed in.
Haas – he’s the kind of best friend everyone wants. Not only did he ride the route to cheer me on, he strapped on his sneakers at the 30 km mark to help me push through the final leg of the race. He put up with my crabby mood (the smile was not strong at this point in time) and coached me with his “ok – time to turn it up. Up. Up.” He helped me get to the finish line.
To those mentioned above, I hope you’re feeling the glory of this finish. You did it. You helped me conquer a goal and remember what it likes to push the boundary of what is possible. In my opinion, there is no better contribution you can make to ones’ life.
Pick of the Post: Bruno Mars – Runaway Baby (the song I crossed the finish line listening to)