Monday, August 06, 2012

Alone in My Enthusiasm

So, apparently I don't just hold diverging views from the rest of my family about peanut butter. Item #2: watching people run marathons on TV.

I've been trying to watch the Olympics and feel into it since the opening ceremonies. I really have. But I can't muster more than about 20 minutes of enthusiasm for any event... I used to like gymnastics, but now I watch and think about how horrible it is that we put so much pressure on children. (And they ACT like children, too, which shouldn't surprise me. In the five minutes I caught last night, our silver medal winner in vaulting, McKayla Maroney, was giving major Bitch Face because she didn't win gold. Dude. Sportsmanship, much?) I don't know. I'm cranky. And when they start interrupting for commercials and Ryan Seacrest every five minutes I want to die. I don't need NBC to explain the internet to me or make me watch 45 minutes of something stupid just so they can up their ratings before going back to something I actually care about. Sports are hard enough for me to watch without constant interruption every time I sort of start to get interested.

So imagine my surprise yesterday as I became completely transfixed by the womens' marathon. I was folding laundry and I'd been watching Cranford all morning (have to do something to bide time until Season 3 of Downton Abbey) and when I flipped that off, the marathon was in full swing. I couldn't do anything else but watch. I sat there in awe in my pile of unfolded towels. I announced this newfound enthusiasm for sports-watching last night at dinner my parents' house. Unfortunately everyone else was in agreement that, like, the marathon was the only sport that they wouldn't be caught dead watching. So boring, they all agreed.

Oh. Oops.

I'm sure my interest was piqued because of my own (can we call it failed? it was only NOT a failure on the level that I did finish) attempt at marathon-running last year. And let's not forget to mention that the winner, Tiki Gelana of Ethopia, finished in 2:23, which is a good ten minutes faster than my best half marathon time. I'm just amazed at how fast these women can run. And honestly, I spent most of the time being really into the fact that their faces look so calm as they're running near-five minute miles. FOR TWENTY SIX POINT TWO MILES.

So anyway, this was a lot like that time I watched the contestants on The Biggest Loser run a marathon and then decided I needed to try it. I promptly hopped online and realized that I won't be out of town this year for the California International Marathon like I was last December. Soo... I haven't decided to do it for sure, but I gave it some serious thought. It would be nice to run one on the home turf and it would be nice to not run one on loose gravel, like I did last time. I honestly still feel embarrassed by my performance last year. I know the type of terrain wasn't made clear and I hadn't trained properly for what I encountered. Not completely my fault. But I still feel like I need a do-over, a real test of what I can do. I figure I have a while to decide.

But you know what?

I ran 3 miles today. For the first time in a long time.

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