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Becoming A Marathoner

Becoming A Marathoner

Jan 25, 2019

Racing

Gollish-1_0.jpgClassic post-marathon feels. 

BY: SASHA GOLLISH

Thank you sisterhood for welcoming me with open arms to the marathon club. What a journey it has been to get here, one I am thankful I had you alongside to help me through. From the highs to the lows, from workouts to recovery, from the laughs to the tears, it has been amazing to share my journey so far with so many. 

Back in September when I attempted the marathon in Berlin and made it to 31.04 km/19.3 mi (according to Garmin) I thought my running world was shattered. And maybe it was. A very good friend of mine told me to grieve, to treat my failed attempt as a loss, and to work through my emotions. It was the best advice I could have received.  

Like all the losses we go through I will carry the Berlin Marathon failure with me forever. But that’s not a bad thing, in fact I see it as a good thing. Like losing someone we love we remember the good, not the bad, and that fueled me to put myself out there again for Houston. The Chevron Houston Marathon was always on my calendar so after the Berlin attempt, I left it there as this looming future goal. Post-grieving, I got to planning. 

I hired a new coach. I got fired up about running again. The runs got longer. The workouts got harder. The gym sessions made me stronger and tougher. 

On Sunday before I stepped up to start the marathon, I was dancing - come on, there was good music, what else was I supposed to do?!  I had posted on Instagram a few days before the marathon that I was going to try and step up to the start line and smile. Smiling carried me through the rough moments because as you marathoners know, there are some dark moments out on the course. When I smiled it also reminded me that it is such a privilege to do what I’m doing. Plus, the science says when you smile your body relaxes and that definitely helped carry me over that 26.2 mi of Houston pavement.

Now that the marathon is behind me there are a few things in the very near future I’m looking forward to. I’m jumping on my alpine ski boards to celebrate my mom’s 65th birthday. She rented a cabin in the woods at a resort and alpine is our fam jam sport, so I’m really looking forward to flying free in a different way. I should also finish that PhD thesis I keep talking about! 

But running, really you want to know what my running plans are. I am pretty sure I’m going to step back on the track. I’d really like to run a 10,000m since I’ve never done one of those before. I suspect I’ll run some of the shorter stuff. I also fell in love with road racing over 2018 so I will definitely run some 10k’s & ½’s. Really, you probably want to know if I’ll run a marathon again. I think so… now that I’ve run one (and crossed the finish line!) I’m ready to think about building a plan to race another, just not in the very near future! 

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