A year ago today, I was starting my 48 Miles in 48 Hours ultramarathon weekend. As frequent (or even occasional) readers of this blog know, I find any opportunity to mention my ultramarathon, even when it's completely irrelevant.
I originally came up with the idea while running (which is where most of my ideas come from). I wanted to do an ultramarathon in a slightly non-traditional way. I wanted to break up 48 miles over two days with 8-mile segments. And I wanted a point-to-point course so that I could say that I actually went somewhere, as opposed to just running in loops.
I recruited other runners from my law school and set up a donation site to the American Cancer Society. I mapped out the course and determined logistics, and then, one year ago today, I started my journey.
As you'll see from my posts, things started out well and my first day ended well. The second day, well, that's when the wheels started to fall off the wagon. I started to get some pretty severe pain on the outside of my left foot, and my legs were incredibly heavy. I had to walk almost the last 13 miles, which made for an excruciatingly slow end.
By the end, I was hobbling from traffic light to traffic light because I just wanted it to be over. Because we hadn't hit the full 48, we had to run around a condo development to make sure that I got the full 48 in. I finished and took a picture of my Garmin watch. That picture is framed and is the first thing I see in the morning when I wake up and the last thing when I go to bed. It's what helps me get out of bed on cold mornings.
One year later, I couldn't be happier that I did the ultramarathon. At this point, I don't have any undying interest in doing another one, but I'm very happy I did the one I did. It reminded me that we can do anything we want if we put our minds to it, and work through some pain in the process.
I think about the ultra often, and from time to time, I drive part of the course I ran. I can still remember where we stopped and how we felt at each stop. I remember how tough the hills were and how narrow the shoulders of the road were. Finishing the ultra remains one of the lasting memories for me, and I'm so grateful that my body and mind allowed me to do it.