Sunday, April 21, 2013

United We Run

"It has been said that the love of the chase is an inherent delight in man - a relic of an instinctive passion." - Charles Darwin

My running pal, Gidg, and I shall participate this morning in the 4th Annual Unite For Charity Half-Marathon on the campus of Rutgers University.   Gidg is running this morning as one of her final training runs before she tackles - and conquers - the New Jersey Marathon for the third consecutive year two Sundays hence.  Me? Having already paid my marathon dues in 2013 - or approximately 76% of them anyway - I am merely running in this event because I enjoy it.  Although the more I run the less interest I have in racing, this is an event that has grown on me since we participated in its maiden voyage way back when in 2010.  If the weather gods are to be believed then today should be a rather nice day on which to run 13.1 miles with race-time temperatures in the low-to-mid forties and nary a rain drop in the forecast.  

Today marks the first race for me since the events of this past Monday in Boston.  I race today with mixed emotions.  While I am looking forward to the race - to the extent anyone looks forward to running 13.1 miles as fast as he can - my enthusiasm level for the event is not what it was one week ago.  I had the chance to get in a four-mile run before work on Wednesday morning, which is a rarity for me these days.  I usually do my mid-week running at night.  As I scooted around my little town here 'NTSG - just as dawn was breaking - the movie played in the theater of my mind of all of the finish lines at which I have seen Margaret's face smiling to greet me and what a welcome sight it has always been to see.  That movie was interspersed with scenes from the finish line area in Boston at or about 3:00 pm on Monday afternoon.  Had I been running in Boston, Margaret would have been there.  She would have been there awaiting my arrival and my certain complaints about leg cramps, knee problems and Heartbreak Hill.  And she would have been smack dab in the center of the fan as the shit came hurtling towards it.  

The Missus is dropping Gidg and I off this morning at the starting area near Rutgers Stadium.  I know not whether she is simply going to circle back a couple of hours later to pick us up or whether she is going to find her way to the finish line area shortly before the race's end to cheer for us upon our arrival.  As much as I count upon seeing her at the finish, I find myself hoping that she opts to arrive just in time to pick us up.  It may be the much safer option.  

I woke up this morning knowing that I am ready to race.  I know not whether I am ready to watch her watch  me do so.  Soon enough I reckon the answer to that question shall be known to me.   

-AK 

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