I remembering watching my first marathon, Boston back in 2003. I was situated close to the finish line on Boylston. I remember the excitement and energy all around me. I also remember getting super emotional as I walked home passing by foil wrapped person after person. This was a few years before I started training again. I couldn't help tearing up and getting goosebumps and really wanting to go out and run a marathon. Since I was mostly only do road mileage (I use that very loosely) and any races I signed up for were road 5Ks, I thought to myself I can do this, I might really do this, you know what I'm going to plan for when I turn 25. In the back of my mind I knew I wasn't serious, I very much loathe long distances, I have since I began running. Of course as most all know that when I turned 25 I did not run a marathon, actually I found my way back to the track instead. A much better decision if you ask me.
Fast forward 8 1/2 years later and Sunday was my first NYC Marathon viewing. Last year I had to work brunch while it was going on almost directly outside of my front door and the year before was just right before I made my big move here. This year I had the morning off so I was excited to be able to watch it. Just when I thought I'd be enjoying the view at about mile 18 outside my door on 1st Ave, I somehow managed to score finish line tickets from a teammate who was not planning on using them. I didn't think that it would be hard to find a partner in crime to join me, I mean I'm on a track club. Everyone I had asked to join had managed to have other plans, finally after exhausting my list of people one of my training partners came through and said she'd happily join the viewing party from thrilling seats. Clad in running gear (because you can't go to a running event not, right?) we made sure to get there early enough to get the best seats and to see all the best runners come through the line. We procured a couple of cowbells to make even more noise and loudly cheered on first the male wheelchair winner, then a handful more men wheelchair, next the winner of female wheelchairs, a bevy of more wheelchairs, then the crazy finish of the women elite race (which we were unable to watch unfold because the jumbotron facing us was blocked by a tree), then to the record breaking men's elite finish, and finally to the droves of sub 3 hour finishers and beyond with a huge spattering of teammates flocking every couple of runners (Pretty sure last count on the billionth email, which I really didn't count, was somewhere in the ballpark of 40 teammates entered to run). In between our raunchious displays of excitement we discussed how much engery was flowing and that we needed to race, when we'd start training for a marathon (I think we settled on her 35th birthday, my 38th), befriended a coach & family of a girl running, and explained to people who thought we looked like we should be running that we only run the .2 part of the 26.2. I really couldn't have picked a better person to accompany me. We fed off each other's kid-like enthusiasm and basked in the excitement that our sport can bring.
Is there marathon potential in my future, only when that time actually comes if it ever comes will know, until then I'll be a spectator that gets catch up in the whirlwind energy that's called the marathon and chase my 1 lap dreams on the track.