Guess what I did last night?!
I registered for the Flying Pig Marathon! Yep, I am officially all signed up!
Ryan recently got the “okay” to take off from work the Friday before and the Monday after the marathon, so I felt like I could finally sign up! You see, I’ve been hesitant to sign-up in the case that Ryan wouldn’t be able to make it. Weird, I know, but let me explain my reasoning…
This past Summer/Fall, I was highly considering running the Disney Marathon (yep, the one that just took place this past January). I thought it’d be the PERFECT first marathon for me because not only would Ryan be able to be there, but so would my mom and stepdad, Gerry (and hello…Florida in Janurary? Talk about awesome race weather!)
My parents live in South Florida during the winter (they call themselves “snowbirds”), and when I told them my idea of the Disney Marathon, they were super excited for me and more than willing to drive the 4.5 hours to Orlando to cheer me on. To top it off, my dad also lives in Florida (Tallahassee, year-round) and he said he’d try to see what he could do to make it, too. However, when I brought the idea of Disney up to Ryan, he told me that he most likely would not be able to take off work because the date of the marathon conflicted with a work project. Some of you might think that this little fact shouldn’t be a big deal, especially since I had all of the support from my parents. But… it was a big deal to me. In fact, it was a deal-breaker.
Growing up, I have always dreamed of running a marathon. (Emphasis on the word “dream.” I never thought I’d actually be capable of running one. Then again, I also thought I’d never be able to run more than 2 miles at a time – I guess I’ve come a long way since my elementary school days of exercise-induced-asthma!). Needless to say, if I was going to sign up for a marathon, I’d for sure want Ryan to be there!
Ryan’s support means more than the world to me, and I want him to be at my first marathon more than anything. So that’s why I pushed the idea of running Disney aside and didn’t sign up. (Instead, I ran two half-marathons here in Charlotte, and snagged a PR the day after my 25th birthday!) Plus, I figured another marathon would show up on my radar sooner or later that everyone would be able to attend. (Geez, I sure do sound really selfish… it is just a race, after all!)
Anyway, back in December, I realized the Flying Pig Marathon in my hometown of Cincinnati, Ohio would be the PERFECT race to run. Not only would my parents be back in Cincinnati for the summer months, but Ryan would probably be able to take off from work! I told my parents about it, and they were more than excited for me, and said that Ryan and I could totally come up to Cinci and utilize their place for the marathon weekend.
Funny that Charlotte, where I live now, is also dubbed “The Queen City.” Guess that says something about me, huh…
Then Christmas rolled around. Ryan and I spent the holiday in Florida with my parents. While cooking in the kitchen one evening, I brought up the Flying Pig with my mom again and she ever-so-casually said that she and Gerry would be heading back to Florida for a month and a half from April through mid-May.
Note: Flying Pig is in May 1st.
“Um, what?” (Blank stare, Head tilt.) “Come agian??”
While my mom continued on chatting away, I read between the lines and realized what she meant. I did a double take, and was pretty upset that my mom was so nonchalant about it. Didn’t she know how important it was for her and Gerry to be there at my first marathon? I mean, she could have told me from the beginning when I first brought up the Flying Pig Marathon idea that they weren’t going to be in town…and I would’ve been fine with it. But the fact that she said it as if it was no big deal… kind of, hurt me. (Yes, I know… I realize I can be overly dramatic and selfish, but having them there meant a lot to me! I get it. No need for a lecture… life goes on).
Anyway, I did some thinking during Christmas, and I realized that my parents never have truly seen that “runner” side of me. This hobby grew to be a part of me after I left the nest. Ryan, on the other hand, knows this “runner side” of me pretty dang well. He’s seen me grow as a runner, snot-rockets and all (if you don’t know already, don’t ask.) He understands how much running means to me and has seen me wake up at 6am for who knows how many mornings in order to fit in a run before the workday. Heck, he’s even stood in sub-freezing temperatures waiting to catch a (two-second) glimpse of me as I ran by during not one, not two, but THREE winter half-marathons.
That’s right, folks. Ryan has stood for hours on end in subfreezing temperatures to watch me run by so he can see me for a whole, whopping two seconds (not even exaggerating…). I bet he is praising the lord that this Flying Pig marathon is during the Spring! Seriously though, that’s dedication. Or love. Probably both.
All I know is…that guy is something, and he is my biggest fan. I realize now that although I’d LOVE to have the support of my parents at my first marathon, I wouldn’t want to run a race without Ryan being there. (Yick, sorry for all the sappy cheese…but it’s true).
Oh, and I also know that I am excited to run my first non-winter race. Bring on the warmer temperatures and minimal layers!
Who votes I dress up and run in a pig costume?
Do any of you feel the need to have a support system at an important race? If so, who would you want to be there? Have you ever run a winter race? Or do you prefer to race only in more “temperate” temperatures? Do any of you love having the support of your significant other, even if they only see you zoom by for a few seconds? Oh, and a very important question…have you run The Flying Pig?!?!