This is part of Take it and Run Thursdays:
There is a difference in how marathoners communicate. In my everyday life I get asked questions such as “How many miles was your marathon?” and “How many marathons are you planning on running?” To which I answer, “This year? I think I’ll do three” and this seems surprising.
But while I was in Boston for the marathon, the questions were much different. It was like a different dialect:
People kept asking, “What’s your goal?” and “What’s your theme?”
What is my goal? What is your goal? What is your theme?
For many runners, completing one marathon is accomplishment enough. I wholeheartedly agree. When I ran my first marathon I was convinced it would be my last. Now, two marathons later, I’m hooked and looking forward to running as many marathons as I can, for as long as it’s fun. Eventually, a repeat marathon runner needs to find a focus and a reason and a logic to how he or she chooses the next marathon and what will be the next goal.
Here are just a few marathon goals I’ve heard lately:
- Some wonderful guys from L.A. who hope to run a sub 3:10
- Several inspirational bloggers who want to qualify for Boston
- My good friends John and Rachel who want to complete their first marathons in June
Marathon Themes or Marathon Challenges: After awhile, it’s not about running a marathon, it’s about collecting marathons, and having an a special reason for running them. Here are some examples of Marathon Themes:
- The Big Five: Boston, Chicago, London, Berlin and New York
- The European Tour: Berlin, London, Paris, Rome and Greece
- The 50 States Marathon Club: Run a marathon in every US state
- The Rock n’ Roll Marathon Tour: San Diego, Phoenix, San Antonio and Virginia Beach
As I look to the future and for the fall Marathon season I have two goals.
Short Term – I do have a time goal: I hope to break into the 3:35 or below… I think with diligent training, attention to my diet and lots of sleep and LOTS of hills this is acheivable
Long Term – And I have found a theme, thanks to my dad who understands my love for running and my penchant for traveling:
THE PACIFIC RIM TOUR: I want to run a marathon in every state and country that touches the Pacific ocean. I can start local and run races in Washington, Oregon, Canada and Mexico. I can eventually go to Alaska and Hawaii for the Honolulu marathon, and maybe, much later down the line, if I’m still in love with running, I’ll go to Tokyo, Australia, China and Russia (Vladivostok Marathon, anyone?)