It’s been a month, almost to the hour, that I stood in the corral of the NYC marathon staring down the forty-two klicks of inevitability that lay out before me.
Two months ago I was in panic mode.
Today I am feeling the weight of the race fading into the rear view, the recovery from the effort simultaneously not nearly as bad as I’d imagined, at least physically, but at the same time like climbing over a mountain of post-marathon motivation drain.
You put your heart into something like a marathon whether you intend to or not. It takes a conscious effort to reach into the future and plan every step, every force of will, every calorie consumed, every invisible wall. And then in a moment, after the most grueling morning of your life, you step across a line painted on asphalt and … it’s done.
You shuffle from the finishing corral, and just as abruptly the thing you have been building towards, yearning to accomplish, aching (literally and spiritually) to complete is just over.
So, your body recovers. Your muscles resume their average workload. Your time is no longer packed with carefully measured distances to accomplish. And rest no longer seems like a dirty word.
But your head is still out there, swirling, fighting to find a sense of that grand importance of accomplishment that you left back there, spread thin across the pavement. That takes, maybe, a bit more than a month.