I’m so excited. I just found out that the Olympic Marathon Trials will be broadcast live this Saturday.
Live! This Saturday!
I’m running early and then planting my behind on the sofa and stuffing my face with all sorts of yummy foods (think Super Bowl party, except for running).
I have my favorites, of course. Kara Goucher. Shalane Flanagan. Amy Cragg (formerly Amy Hastings). Deena Kastor. Sarah Hall. And Renee Metivier Baille, because I like the tattoo down her waist.
As for the men, there’s just one word: Meb (Meb!).
I’m also rooting for Abdi Abdirahman and Fernando Cabada (kind of a long shot but I so like this guy).
I really, really wanted to cheer on Sage Canaday, one of my favorite ultra-runners, but alas, he missed the qualifying time by 12 seconds. Can you imagine it? Twelve friggin’ seconds, poor dude.
I love watching running. I’ve viewed the London Marathon Women’s Race over six times. I never become bored, even after I know who wins. I love the rhythm of the runners, how their arms swing, their legs move. I love noticing small details: The slight tightening of shoulders when fatigue sets in, vague facial expressions, the way elbows drop and rise. It’s similar to a dance.
It’s also deceptive. Because watching, it looks so easy. It looks effortless. And yet they are churning out a lowish 5- minute pace, mile after long and stubborn mile.
Last week in the gym I set the treadmill on the 12 setting, which is a 5 minute pace, and tried running. I lasted less than a minute, and I was in serious danger of falling off the damned machine. The idea of maintaining such a pace for 26.25 miles is mind-boggling and something I will obviously never, ever reach in my lifetime.
So I’ll be watching and cheering on every single Olympic Marathon Trial runner, even those finishing at the back of the pack. Because marathons are tough and the paces are brutal and each runner has poured so much heart and given up huge chunks of life for this moment. And though they’ll never know it, in my sister’s living room in the Philly suburbs, I’ll be clapping, cheering, stuffing my face with popcorn and loving every single one of them.
Last week’s stats:
Monday: 6.5 miles, hilly
Tuesday: Cross trail: weights and 45 minutes bike
Wednesday: 4 miles hill work
Thursday: 8.15 miles, hilly
Friday: 4.5 miles speedwork on treadmill (.25 mile 5x 7:30 and 7:19 pace)
Saturday: Rest and lots ‘o walking
Sunday: 10 miles, flattish
Total: 33.15 miles