Drinking a cup of coffee on my porch on a crisp and cool morning here in North Carolina, every thought in my head revolves around Chicago.
As I listen to the birds, thoughts are swirling in my head about what to pack. At long, long last, after seven days straight at work, I am finally on mini vacation! I ran my last taper run last night, and my body feels good. Today is all about the preparation. Laundry to do, packing must be done. I think I am actually going to run in my race shirt from last years Chicago Marathon. Why not? I usually don’t repeat races, so it would be a great chance to get some use out of it.
Our plane takes off tomorrow morning bright and early so today is all about tying off lose ends, packing and relaxing my feet. Two days without running will get me to the starting line feeling fresh and motivated. I haven’t decided if I will head straight to the expo once our plane lands or if I head there later in the day. Starting in Corral C, I can’t wait to pick up my bib! The Chicago Marathon Health and Fitness Expo is truly an amazing experience. If you ever need to get motivated to run 26.2 miles, visit this expo!
Since I ran Chicago last year, many of the “first time running a race” logistical nerves aren’t with me this time around. I now know the city, know where I’m going and know how to navigate where I need to be and when. It will be much more calm this time. It’s probably why I haven’t even started packing yet. This marathon gig, this destination race gig is so much more comfortable now.
I never quite know at the beginning of each year, how my race schedule will develop. Of course I have certain races already paid for and a good rough sketch of the year ahead, but how those races pan out always depends on health and injury, work schedule, travel budget, etc.. Then you have to factor in races where just to get in you have to enter a lottery. You can never plan too far in advance if you’re even considering an event on your calendar that requires a lottery to get in. I was lucky enough to make it into Chicago again (two years in a row), and I never even started second guessing myself on if I should run it again. Once I knew I made it into the race, I signed up for the race.
The Chicago Marathon on Sunday, will be my 21st marathon! Lucky 21! I can barely contain my excitement!
I have been so blessed all throughout this marathon running journey I’ve been on. I do feel very lucky to even have made it to my 21st marathon. It’s only fitting I get to call this Chicago Marathon my 21st. Back in Myrtle Beach 2012, as I toed the line for my first marathon, a thought of ever reaching twenty more marathons never even crossed my mind. I am so fortunate that my, now 45 year old, body has withstood the test of marathon running to this degree. It’s time for the dealer to shuffle the deck, and deal me my Blackjack in Chicago!