Marathon Envy

I have a confession to make.

I have marathon envy. Not really in the sense that I’m itching to go out and run 20-milers in the summer heat, but more that I have unfinished business with this distance.

Marathon Envy | 2 Generations Running

Me addressing any and all marathons.

This time last year, I was struggling with my EHL strain (a tendon that runs from your big toe up into your ankle).

ehl culpritI couldn’t get through a 5-mile run without serious pain along the top of my foot, but I was trying not to give up hope on the Rochester Marathon (which I had already registered for, of course). While my tendon ended up feeling decent enough that I was able to run the race, it really messed up my training. I managed to squeak in one 20 mile run before the race, but I missed out on the majority of my 15-18 mile long runs in addition to a whole bunch of shorter distances that would have been critical in contributing to my endurance.

Rochester Marathon | 2 Generations Running

At the time, I was really just ecstatic that I was able to run the race, and I am still happy that I did it. My time wasn’t even that bad. But now, there’s a voice in the back of my head wondering what my marathon time would look like if I was able to fully complete a training plan, uninjured. I’ve had conversations with some very talented runners in my running club who have said that it even took them 3 or 4 tries at the marathon to really ‘do it right’ so to speak. That makes me think I can’t give up on it yet.

I would love to be training to do the Bay State Marathon with my mom. It really would be perfect for a second (possibly PR-worthy) marathon. It’s nice and flat and it’s in the early fall, so temps should be perfect for running. It’s also an extremely popular course for runners trying to qualify for Boston, so you know that means it’s a fast course. I have to be honest with myself though – I don’t have the time to train for a marathon this summer between working full-time and my 4 hours round-trip of commuting each day. At first, I was considering it and kind of wondering if I was a wimp not to do it. But, the realistic side of me won out. The next time I run a marathon, I really want to do it right, and in order for that to happen, I know I have to be patient. Still, it’s difficult hearing so many runners discussing their fall marathon plans!

So for now, I’m trying to keep my marathon envy at bay by planning on signing up for the Bay State Half. It won’t be another state or a dramatic challenge the way a marathon is,  but it will at least give my summer running some sense of purpose while my mom and I try to figure out which state we’ll be looking to cross off next. As for the marathon, I’ll do some window-shopping for the right course and work on maintaining a strong base, so that when the time is right, I’ll be ready to give it all I’ve got.

Do you get race envy? How many attempts did it take you to really figure out the marathon (if you’ve run one or several)?

2 thoughts on “Marathon Envy

  1. dgobs

    I totally get race envy, especially when I’m sidelined because of injury! I think your plan of building a good base and picking one when the time is right sounds smart. I need to take a page from your book and approach races that way… too many time I sign up impulsively without leaving myself proper time to train and then injuries happen, bringing me back to the start of the cycle.


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