Posted by: Sarah | October 20, 2009

You love me for the chase but hate me for the runaround…

Non-runners think runners are crazy.  Seriously.  I went into the restaurant where I work last weekend after I had completed (PR’ed!!) the Staten Island Half Marathon, and all the guys’ responses were, “what?! you just ran a half marathon this morning?! like, a couple hours ago?!”  Charlie stared at me for awhile, with a completely perplexed look on his face, and finally declared, “I think you must be crazy.  OK, go for a run, you’re in good shape, I get that, but 13 miles? And no one paid you to do this?” I told him that I had in fact, paid someone to let me do it.  Yup, he decided, I was crazy.

In their mind, why would any sane person run unless they were chasing something or running away from something? Running, just for the sake of running, they don’t understand. In my mind, running, for the sake of running does make sense because I am both chasing and running away, some days one of those more than the other, depending on what is going on in my life.

Chasing a PR
Running away from reality
Chasing something bigger than myself
Running away from weakness, from laziness, from failure
Chasing the finish line
Running away my worries, my cares, my stress, my fears
Chasing the dream


The Staten Island Half was excellent.  I had not really expected much, either of the race or of myself, and as such, it went above and beyond my expectations.  The weather was perfect, the course was beautiful, and the view of Manhattan and the Verrazano Bridge (in runner speak: the starting line of the NY Marathon) was motivating.

I say that my expectations for myself were low, not because there was anything wrong with my training or I didn’t feel prepared, but rather because I’ve never really been quite as relaxed in my race approach for a half before.  I had intended to incorporate the race into my marathon training as a long run, rather than to “race it” simply because I needed to fit in another qualifier for the 2010 NY Marathon. I even missed the gun because I was still in line for the port-a-potties and didn’t stress out too much as I jogged over to the start line a few minutes later.  That’s how nonchalant I was about this race.

Once I crossed the start line however, race mode kicked in, of course, as I started to calculate my time and focus 100% on the race.  Much to my dismay, in the past couple weeks, my tummy has suddenly decided that it no longer likes the gels that I have been using for the past year and a half since I started running, so I had hard time taking in any kind of nutrition during the run.  Gatorade, water, power gels, my stomach was not happy with anything.  In spite of that, however, I had the best race this year and set a PR from my time in Madison by about 3 minutes, finishing in 2:16:23.  Not bad.  I’ll take that.

Less than 5 weeks to Philly.



  1. Great race!

    I’ve never been to NYC but keep entering the NYCM lottery so I know that I will be there in 2010 or 2011. From what I can tell, an amazing city for runners.

    Sounds like you’re going to have an epic day in Philly.

    All the best,


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