Stumbling Upon a Marathon

Tomorrow will be an important anniversary – see one year ago I ran in and completed my first Marathon in Denver.  An entire 26.2 miles on my feet. It’s fun remembering how much I loathed running up until a few years ago. Something clicked and I would enjoy short to mid-distance jogs but still never really thought I’d run a marathon. Until I ran a 10 K in Charleston…at that point I felt the doors had been shoved open.

Cooper River Bridge Run (Photo Credit: Matt Hoffmaster)

Cooper River Bridge Run 2012

If I could run 6.2 miles I could certainly run 20 more after it!

The perfect storm of being between jobs, in a new city with a limited social circle and the overwhelming sense of needing a purpose is what led me to actually sign up. Then on Sunday May 19, 2013 after 4 months training, securing a new job, and traveling to Japan for 2 weeks, I completed the race. The feeling was exhilarating and overwhelming. A storm of sensations both emotional and physical upon crossing the finish line. I couldn’t wait to do it again.

My first Marathon

Colfax Marathon 2013

My knee had other plans of course and for 2014 I decided to forgo that distance and do a half marathon in late summer instead (stay tuned).

How ironic that today – Sunday May 18th  – the day of the Denver Colfax Marathon back home – while Adam and I headed out of our little apartment in Copenhagen to sight see we stumble upon a road block announcing that the Copenhagen Marathon is today; and we’re just in time to a  see the lead runner. The crowds are going wild with signs, clapping and cheering. Adam and I of course join in, and cheer on as the elite level runners start out their race.


CPH Marathon Leader

Copenhagen Marathon 2014

All of a sudden I got very emotional. I’m tearing up while cheering. While remembering my own experience. How much the crowds truly do help when you realize just how crazy a task you’ve set out on. How much perfect strangers can motivate you or at least entertain you on the hours long self inflicted endurance test.

The Copenhagen marathon route went all over and throughout the city. Seeing the enthusiasm spectators had – feeling the enthusiasm being a spectator myself was just amazing. I was struck thinking about the awesomeness that is a marathon. How much of a celebration of the human spirit they are. I think that set in more watching the runners than being a runner.

Lots of Runners

As the skies turned dark and gloomy – and after Adam and I decided to embark on an open boat tour of the canals (another story for another day) – the rain started to pour down.

And the marathon runners kept on. The crowds cheered louder. I felt this impulse to continue to cheer, to stick it out in the rain with them and make sure each runner had at least someone clapping when they ran by as if it’s part of your journey too – if I clap a little louder they’ll give it one last push!

I’m left thinking how I need to watch more races. And I certainly will run another marathon.

But for now, I’m going to enjoy Copenhagen.


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