The final seven days before a marathon always bring myriad emotions and it usually leaves a little too much time to think. All those hours that are usually filled with running, stretching, core work, ice baths, cross training, eating, sleeping, ingesting fluids, grocery shopping, doing yet another load of laundry, and preparing to start the entire cycle all over again are replaced by hours of thinking about if you did all those things the right way, and if they will finally put you within reach of the goals that have remained elusive for what seems like an eternity.
My head seems to be quiet this time around, though. I'm oddly at peace with the fact that there's nothing left to do. I am sentimental and nostalgic for the road that led me here--certainly my life was in a different place when I took that first step, 27 weeks ago. And every mile in between has been one enormous learning experience. But that's why I love running--it never fails to teach you a thing or two about yourself and the people around you. And clearly I'll never forget this time that I somehow found myself living in the Pocono Mountains, far from the city life I am accustomed to, attacking the hills on the endless country roads with only a pasture full of cows to keep me company along the way.
The work is done, so now it's time to trust, have faith, rest, and rejuvenate. Here's hoping for a happy Philadelphia Marathon finish line that leads to a brand-new starting line...and the next big adventure.