I ran my last marathon on November 12, 2011.  At the time, I didn’t realize that my marathon career was pretty much over…

I know that I could run another marathon, but seriously, how many do I need to run?  I have 40 under my belt and shouldn’t I just be happy with that?  I am… sort of.

My goal is to run forever.  I could train for another marathon, but what if I were to get a career ending injury in the process since it’s the longer runs that aggravate my spine?  What if I could no longer go out for an easy run just for the fun of it?  What if…  I just err on caution?

I’ve come to realize that it’s not the marathon I miss; it’s the training…

I miss planning to make a point-to-point long-run go off without a hitch.

I miss meeting my friends in the dark so we can be driven by a non-running friend to the far western end of the W&OD Trail and dropped off.

I miss gathering together with excitement before the start of a 22-mile point-to-point run; and if we’re lucky, admiring a beautiful sunrise as we start our run.

I miss the uninterrupted hours spent with my Cruiser friends, and the shenanigans we used to pull off.

I miss dropping off drinks and fuel at points along the trail for us to refill from when we ran by.

I miss the joy of running for hours without a time limit.

I miss the silliness and inside jokes we created on every long run together.

I miss the freedom of being on the trail for several hours, and having no idea what else is going on in the world at that moment.

I miss seeing other running groups that we could predict would be on the trail at a certain time and place; watching for them, saying hello, yet never knowing their names.

I miss the well deserved nap later in the day after a great long training run.

I miss being able to eat anything I wanted for the rest of the day, even though I was usually too exhausted to be very hungry.

I miss the bragging rights of saying that I went on a 22-mile training run like it was no big deal.

Don’t get me wrong.  I’m grateful for every 10 or 12-mile run that I go on these days, but they’re just not the same as the 20 or 22-miler where you leave everything behind, and it’s just you against the trail.

Yes, it’s the training that I miss…


  • Questions:
  • What’s your longest training run ever?
  • Do you like racing or training runs better?
  • What race are you currently training for?