The Marathon and the Metaphor

IMG_20110409_194207.jpgFor now, and forever, I will always identify myself as…

A marathoner.

On Sunday, April 10, 2011, I spent 3 hours and 51 minutes running 26.2 miles along the streets of St. Louis, Missouri; and I can honestly say, it changed my life.

We often hear “the marathon” used as a metaphor for myriad events.  The baseball season… is a marathon.  Every December I look forward to… “A Christmas Story” movie marathon.  Life itself… is a marathon.  But when we say all of the above, what we are really just saying is that some things take a long, long time to complete.

Let me assure you, the marathon is much more than that.

It’s setting a goal and working towards it.

IMG_20110410_061325B.jpgIt’s taking pride in your body, listening to it, working to make it better.

It’s getting up at the crack of dawn while all your friends are sleeping in.

It’s battling fatigue, slaying freezing temps, conquering blazing sun.

It’s knowing your limits, pushing them, then pushing them again.

It’s glowing when people ask you why you’re so positive about life.

It’s metaphorizing your life, making up for past mistakes, proving you’re not a nobody.

It’s throwing the hammer down on negativity.

It’s getting a song stuck in your head that… just… won’t… stop.

It’s rewarding yourself with a big, fat, juicy burger every Sunday.

It’s asking yourself “I paid to do this????” only to realize, “Hell yeah I paid to do this!!!!”

It’s thanking strangers who hand you Gatorade and oranges and Vasoline (not always in that order).

It’s being aware of your surroundings, taking in the sights, the smells, the cowbells. 

It’s being extraordinary…

It’s being inspired…

It’s being an inspiration.

But most of all, it’s feeling like death only to discover just how alive you really are.

Don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.



*PS, To the lovely, smiling woman who held up a sign shortly before Mile 3 that read “If you don’t finish, Albert Pujols will sign with the Cubs”… well, I want you to know that around the 22 mile marker, when I just about wanted to die, I thought about that sign and I finished that damn race for you. MUAH!


The Mile 3 sign seems like it may have inspired you! Congratulations on finishing your marathon!


3:51! Great job and congrats, Jeff! That’s actually a good time! Now, to your next marathon…

– Randy

Wow! Thats a Great time. Congrats!

Wow! Thats a Great time. Congrats!

Congratulations! Way to go!
…and serious style points to Ms. Mile 3 for a great sign.🙂
– Kristen

Did that sign-holding lady know you’d be running past? 🙂 Congrats on finishing with a great time – I’d be crawling after mile 2.
Rants, Raves, and Random Thoughts

Nothing but respect for you, my friend. It’s all about being able to look at yourself in the mirror at the end of the day, and knowing you’re the best you can be. A lot of people could learn from your attitude toward life.

It’s a truly impressive feat, but the outfit…um….
Anyway, glad someone with competence (and a brain) on MLBlogs is running a marathon. You know where I’m heading with this…

Wow! Jeff, I’m so proud of you. I can hardly force myself to take a walk in the afternoon after work. A marathon is a huge accomplishment and it sounds like you made it look easy. Congrats!

Thanks, All! Much appreciated!

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