At this stage in training you’re likely focused on the goal of getting to the finish line in relative comfort. You have to focus on tapering properly by following the prescribed training schedule and avoiding injury. You have to also make sure you eat well, stay hydrated, get sufficient rest and not introduce anything new into your routine.
There is so much to consider in the remaining weeks before the marathon that you may not consider life beyond the marathon. While focusing on the aforementioned tasks is precisely what you should be doing, I urge you to take a moment to consider life beyond Boston. Many runners have expressed concern over the huge void that will exist in their lives once the marathon is over. It’s so easy to become consumed by the monumental task of training for Boston that you don’t consider how your life may change from this experience.
You many never have a clearer glimpse into what you’re capable of accomplishing in life than when you cross the finish line of the 2014 Boston Marathon. I’ve heard countless stories of how life-altering this accomplishment is to so many. Once you prove that you’re capable of committing to and completing a major challenge, you begin to consider what other pursuits may be in your future. Completing a marathon, particularly the Boston Marathon, is one of the most empowering experiences you’ll ever have.
Becoming a Boston Marathon Finisher will be part of your legacy forever. No one will ever be able to take that title from you. The finisher’s medal will likely be kept with your most valuable possessions. But this experience is about so much more than checking it off your ‘Must Do’ list in life and the finisher’s medal. It’s about discovering things about yourself that you never considered or imagined. Training through the difficult winter and mostly on the hills of Newton likely revealed some weaknesses in your fitness, your mental state and possibly even your character. Those runners that embrace the reality they’re not as strong as they once thought and dedicate themselves to improving are likely to take more than the finisher’s medal from this experience. They take a passion and commitment to live their lives in the spirit of continuous improvement.
Too many people focus exclusively on their strengths and attempt to ignore their weaknesses which guarantees their accomplishments and self-perception will forever remain limited.
I hope that you take a moment to consider life beyond the marathon….it’s never going to be the same!