although i had been training since summer with half-marathoners with the goal race of today’s scotiabank toronto waterfront marathon, you’d think that i would be excited for them and for the race taking place at my doorstep. but it’s not my race–did it back in ’05, wouldn’t do it again–and it was only two weeks ago when i read some of the stwm blog that i solidified my plan to do my long run first then plant myself at king & bay to watch both 2-hour half-marathoners close in on the finish line and the lead marathoners breeze by. i read about gena vying to be the first ethiopian to claim first place at stwm and how two costumed runners were trying to break guinness records in toronto. later, i would also read that a third, a guy in a suit, also wanted to break a guinness record, for fastest marathon run in a suit.
my plan–and you know what happens when you make a plan–was to start running towards humber bay arch bridge 8K away, take a picture, turn around and come back in time to plant myself at king & bay at 10:30. in sleeping stupor, i didn’t set an alarm and woke up at 8 when i needed to head out. i looked out my window and couldn’t see 100 meters ahead of me and heard the sound of fat raindrops. i was going to do my run on a treadmill in the cozy condo gym.
99 minutes on a treadmill isn’t so bad when you have good books to listen to (third book in girl with the dragon tattoo trilogy and a pr satire by terry fallis) and entertainment outside the window. the 5K started at 8:00 so i was watching them reach the 4K mark and the winners had already passed by. although it took a moment to register, but i’m 100% sure i saw the back of 101-year-old faujah singh run by with at least ten groupies running surrounding him. the books i’m listening to was entertaining, watching the runners was fun and i felt some solidarity with the guy on the treadmill next to me also going for a long run when our footfall would sync up. i was craning my neck so much it gave me sharp neck pain and i stopped running at 90 minutes.
finally, i was on the ground and head towards my target intersection, half a block away from my office, a very toronto backdrop. and i set my gaze upon the half-marathoners who were going to break 2 hours and it was a dense stream and, darn it, i choked up a little. wth? what’s wrong with me? is life really getting to me now and i would have a cry on bay street?
a little later than expected (like at 2:09 instead of 2:06), the lead vehicles finally showed up with a many-windowed canada running series van with race officials driving by, a police motorcycle and a car topped with a digital display of the elapsed time since the gun went off. you weren’t going to miss the lead runner. warga from ethiopia breezed by and soon i was staring at his back and full on tears hit.* you’d think i was someone who due to injury couldn’t do a half- or full-marathon and crying at the sight of runners. maybe it’s only partly life getting to me** because i had also chocked up at the requisite point while watching the spirit of the marathon documentary.
* a sportstats van followed closely after warga, ensuring the timing integrity of the race, i’m sure.
** life? i only just managed to identify it to npy as the icky and awful feeling i’ve gotten in the long ago past when i’ve decided i wanted to break up with a boyfriend and i’m distant and moody and everything he does pisses me off. when will he get the hint? only, the case this time isn’t a boyfriend and i really should be able to handle myself better….
On this day..
- NPY's PotD*: Day Forty-Four - 2011