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Marathons | Thoughts of a Nervous Runner

Friends, please indulge me for a moment. I’m usually preoccupied with laundry, schedules and all aspects of my kids and motherhood. For the next day or so I’m going to be selfish … and I don’t even feel badly about it.

I’m going to run my first marathon on Saturday.

And it’s a mixed bag of emotions.

I have been asked by many friends if I am ready. I usually respond with “I haven’t packed up yet … I bought a cool shirt … I have my Gu ready …” and many other responses that have nothing to do with training.

So let’s talk about training. I went into this whole ordeal not particularly excited about running. I’d say it’s “not my thing” and would opt for a Body Combat class any day of the week. But, I wanted a new challenge. Any why not a marathon, right? Go big or go home.

I had two reasons for showing up Saturday after Saturday in the snow, rain and heat. My two running partners, Jen and Katie. Jen and I have been friends for about 6 years, and I met Katie the day before I cheered her and Jen on at the New York Marathon last November.

It was that marathon in which I first thought that it may just be possible for me to finish one. The mental image of seeing a double amputee finish is one that I will always have. And my friends came in just seconds before the Chilean miner, so I saw him, too. And then there was the superwoman recently who finished a marathon then had a baby just hours after.

How in the world can little ‘ol me wimp out?

Katie loves marathons. She doesn’t just love marathons. She LOVES marathons. Jen enjoys a good marathon, too, but I know that they are doing this one just for me. This is MY marathon. (And frankly, I don’t know why all of the official merchandise said “Baltimore Marathon” when it should say “Lori’s Marathon.”) And I may be driving my friends nuts with the talk about it, so I’m glad they love me and are supportive of my efforts. (Friends, I promise that I’ll stop talking about it within a week!)

This week I’ve been emotional about it. When I think of starting, I start to tear up. When I think of finishing, I start to tear up. I’ve been really excited, and I’ve also had a nervous stomach. I’m a worrier, so I’ve had my moments that I’ve worried about getting injured.

Then I think to myself: “I’m about to do something only 3 percent of the population has done.” That seems big to me. Running a marathon may seem like a dream to some, and a nightmare to others. Some couldn’t fathom it, and others have no interest in giving it another thought.

But for me, in my life right now, it’s a monumental feat. It is something huge that is possible. It is the culmination of an amazing effort, mounds of determination … and came at the expense of many lost hours of sleep, at least three pairs of shoes and a bottle of Biofreeze.

Tomorrow I’m running a marathon, and although life will go back to “normal” after that, in a way it never will be. I’ll have a new “normal” – one that will include the title “marathon runner” in the description. That’s kinda cool.

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[author_info]About the Author

 Lori Rypka is the Prime Parents Club Fitness Contributor, a mom of two wonderful kids first, a writer, wife, friend, personal trainer and marathon runner in training second. She enjoys helping others in their personal journeys toward living healthier lives. The biggest tool in her tool box: humor. Who says dieting can’t be fun? You can find Lori at, or on Twitter as @LoriRypka.



Lori Rypka has been certified as a personal trainer through the American Council on Exercise since April 2010, and enjoys helping friends find their healthy selves. Follow Lori on her blog at Fumbled Into Fitness.


  1. Jennifer Gerlock "The Other Crazy One"

    October 14, 2011 at 10:42 am

    I am so proud of you! Remember – the hardest part of this whole thing was the training. You’ve already done that. Tomorrow will rock!

  2. Katie "The Darkness" Barkdoll

    October 14, 2011 at 10:11 am

    “Lori’s Marathon”!!! I love that. You’re going to do great tomorrow..I promise!

  3. Prime Parents' Club

    October 14, 2011 at 9:56 am

    GO GIRL! So proud of you! This post made me all teary. This is such a huge accomplishment. Can’t wait to hear your thoughts after. :)


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