So. After diligently training for 18+ weeks, what does one DO after completing a marathon?
Well, for starters, they do a lot of fist pumping and walk around BEAMING. And pretty much just remain in that fog of excitement for the next week or so.
After posing for many photos with your friends and family who cheered you on in the chute, you then dictate a few strict orders–you need 2 bottles of water, one bottle of Gatorade and a banana–STAT, but the banana has to be kept out of sight and out of mind until the vom-feeling goes away (turns out, that will be an hour or two LATER).
You get giddy over the sight of stairs and pace up and down them as much as possible.
You walk in circles among a very crowded post-marathon party in the park while your friends and family reconvene and make plans for the post-race celebration back at your parents house.
After doing squats in the parking garage elevator, and severe muscle tightening on the car ride home, you nearly fall flat on your face while walking into the house because your legs have momentarily turned to jello. But you remind yourself how good the stairs felt only 30 minutes before, and climb them to go shower off the massive amounts of sweat and salt.
Then you spend a few hours chugging water, munching on the massive piles of delicious food your family made and fruit bouquets they ordered.
After fielding many congratulatory phone calls, retelling the entire experience a few times over, and having many mental battles with your body over whether you should nap for a “few minutes” or power through and continue enjoying the company of people you’re hanging with, you finally decide on the first option. And pour yourself that long-awaited glass of vino.
I’ve heard stories of people finishing their first, second, fifth and 23rd marathon and rocking out until the wee hours of the night.
Those people really ARE crazy. I passed out HARD on Saturday night. However, aside from one early-morning stair encounter (well, and some continued dehydration which I’m sure the wine didn’t help), I felt surprisingly okay on Sunday morning. Yes, of course I was tight and achy (still am), but all post-marathon pain-inflicting horror stories considered, I felt pretty darn good (and still do).
So when my very awesome family suggested that we spend the afternoon in the great outdoors of the beautiful mountains of Charlottesville, I was in!
No, we were not hiking. Again, I’m not crazy.
We were picnicking and sipping more sweet goodness at Kluge…known now as Trump Winery.
Afterwards we also stopped at the bottom of Carter Mountain at an apple orchard, where though the apples were no longer in season, there were at least beautiful views to enjoy and lots of yummy fall treats, such as hot apple cider and homemade apple and pumpkin donuts.
From there it was catching a plan back to the Big Apple. While I missed having the JD in Richmond with me for this epic weekend, I think this is where I missed him the most. Traveling solo after such an adrenaline rush of a weekend was a little strange and slightly uncomfortable. Too quiet. Too somber. I was already missing the marathon, and the cheer squads. And as much as I wanted to tell every stranger passing by me at RCA that I had just run a marathon and wait for them to jump up and down and be giddy and full of questions, I had to refrain. Mostly because I knew it wouldn’t reap the desired results.
Luckily, that feeling didn’t last too long because the flight from Richmond is super short. And before I knew it, I was looking down on this:
I’ll now spend the next six months missing my Richmond marathon, the six months after that preparing to tackle New York. And on and off over the course of that entire year, be itching to sign up for another 26.2.