During the class break last night, a young woman reported that she’d run in the Chicago marathon over the study break. She finished in a respectable time and now wants to try for Boston. “But I need to lose 20 pounds first,” she said, taking a drag on a cigarette. (Yes, really.) “And give these up.”
Hell, the fact she was able to finish a marathon in the four-hour range with 20 extra pounds and a party-butt habit is already pretty damn impressive, if you ask me.
Anyway, someone asked if anything interesting had happened during the race. “Some woman shit herself,” she said. “And she kept running! That’s amazing, and pretty dangerous.”
Actually, I think I’ve read that diarrhea during marathons is pretty common; certainly it is in ultra-marathon and Ironman-style races, if the brown backsides you see on ESPN are any indication. It only confirms my belief that running is insane, or at least: Not for me. (I’ve always said I’d take up running when they come up with a sports bra with hydraulics.) A few years ago the Washington Post ran an interesting piece advancing the Marine Corps marathon, where they asked experienced runners to talk about their most memorable experiences in the sport.
Good lord, but if I hadn’t been put off before, that certainly sealed the deal — bleeding nipples, hypothermia, leg cramps that register on the Richter scale and my favorite, attacking ravens (this in a marathon in Antarctica, for those whose goal is to run 26.2 miles on every continent).
Later, one of my classmates asked, “How much money would it take to get you to run a marathon?” Not for sale at any price, I told him. “Ten thousand? How about $10,000?” he asked. No. Finally he upped it to $100,000. Put the cash in escrow and I’ll think about it.