I signed up for 2016 Napa Valley Marathon.
This is going to be my first marathon experience. I did a half marathon last year. But I never tried to complete a marathon course.
I didn’t think I was ready to commit. Yet when a bunch of my cycling friends and I were messaging back and forth, a veteran marathoner invited us to join. I jumped at that chance. Knowing my aversion to commitment, I’m not sure why. It must have been the right time for me.
I must have been waiting for the next challenge. When I did my half marathon, it was not because of my own initiative. It was my wife’s idea. She invited me to run together.
It was Kaiser Permanente S.F. Half Marathon.
On the race day, it started to drizzle when we headed out in the early morning Sunday. It became pouring rain when we were driving to the race course. Neither my wife nor I had adequate rain gear on us. Flimsy sweat jackets were all we had. When we got out of the car, and out of the garage, it was cold. We were not sure whether it was a good idea to run. Sky looked gray all over, and there was no sign of letting up.
But we ran. Although the rain continued through out the race, we ran. When we were down on the final few miles, the rain drops angled by blustery winds were so sharp that it was painful to endure. In spite of the cold rainy and windy weather, thankfully we finished.
It was the first time ever that I ran over 5 miles. Looking back at it, it was not as physically challenging as I originally thought. Perhaps it’s because I kept pace with my wife. What seemed more daunting before the race was the idea that I had to prepare for the race, and to break my Sunday routine to get out to the race course early Sunday morning. Both of the inconveniences now seem like small price to pay when I look back at the gain from the whole half marathon experience.
Napa Valley Marathon is going to happen on March 6th, 2016, 7am in the morning. I have exactly 14 weeks 6 days to prepare. My marathoner friend tells me that it’s likely that it will rain. I better mend my mental wet suit to prepare for the long run.
Here’s what the course looks like. If you are looking for the next challenge, I would love to see you on the course.