The Point of Know Return
I dialed the number. I could hear the phone ringing. This was it. If he picked up the phone there was no turning back.
Here we go. Full steam ahead.
“Hey Mike, it’s Hen.”
“Hey man, what’s up?”
Last chance. Make something up or you’re doing it.
“Mike. It’s been ten years. It’s time.”
“No way in hell, my friend. But good luck to you.”
And it was done.
I did understand, of course. Mike and I don’t live as close to each other as we did back then. And he’s married with three kids now. But he deserved the first call. He jumped into the breach with me ten years ago when I announced to the world I was planning on embarking on an insane, crazy journey of training for and running a marathon with no previous experience. He ran the long runs with me and kept me going when my knee gave out. He was at the starting line with me, and finished his marathon an hour and ten minutes faster than I did. He was a fellow warrior. I had to call him first, even though I knew his answer, because I knew once I called him I was actually going to do it. Mike, of all people, knew I would.
The next call was to my sister. Like Mike, she ran many of the long runs with me. She helped me survive a particularly bad 14-miler when I hadn’t hydrated properly and got the shakes halfway into the run. And even though she didn’t run the entire marathon, she did run the last ten miles with me. She had to be next. She immediately offered to run the last ten miles with me again, even after I cautioned her that I was planning on running them faster than last time. Of course ‘fast’ for me isn’t exactly fast for her.
And then, once my brother and sister-in-arms knew, I told the world. (Or at least, the four people who read this blog )
So it’s official.
Yesterday, I was at lunch with another friend of mine. Some time during the conversation I mentioned I was running another marathon. His response was not what I expected.
“Are you running the Marine Corps Marathon again?”
“So you’ve already registered?”
“No. Registration isn’t until April.”
And then he stopped and looked past me for a second.
At this point I realized he wasn’t trying to call my bluff.
“... You want to run it with me?” I asked.
I warned him that it will be tough. That it takes up a lot of time and effort and with four kids (he’s got four, not me) it would take some serious planning. I also told him that he should do it if he could. I couldn’t tell him exactly why, but I think he knew.
In any case, serious training doesn’t kick in until summer. Hopefully I'll be adding another name to the list.