The 2011 Chicago Marathon (brief) race report

It took me 5 hours 33 minutes and 40 seconds to run the Bank of America Chicago Marathon. Upon crossing the finish line I realized it was the most pointless thing I’ve worked so hard to accomplish.

I don’t think my heart was in the right place when I started training for the marathon.  At some point it ended up being work and not just something I did to refocus, to enjoy, to explore.  And to be honest, I missed DC. I missed the endless trails in Reddy Creek Park.  I missed my running buddies. I missed the inspiration.  Training in Chicago was just not the same (even though the marathon itself is something I would not shy from recommending to those interested – the route is flat and the crowds are great).

The thing about running is that it makes you dream big right from the start. Back when I could barely run a mile, I was already sure that some day soon enough I would run 26.2 miles.  It had to be done. So even though the end result was anti climatic, I am happy to have checked this goal off the list.  After all I will no longer have to wonder if I could run 26.2 miles.  I’ll take it.

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Chika Gujarathi is a freelance writer based in Raleigh, NC. She writes about everything from travel, food, books, and family. Her current project includes a series of children's books to teach Hindi. She is a native Tar Heel who has also lived in Washington DC and Chicago.

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