A few weeks ago my friend Lisa asked if I wanted to run in the Chicago marathon with her in October.  Of course I didn’t want to run in any marathon; the word “marathon” is used as a synonym for long-lasting agony and pain possibly leading to death.  So, not my thing.  But the idea kind of stuck with me, and just this week I decided to go for it.  This is ironic for several reasons:

1. less than 1 week ago I was diagnosed with bursitis in my left foot.  This means that there is a small sac of fluid, called a bursa sac, which is supposed to keep the bones lubricated, but it is unhappy – causing swelling, inflammation, and pain.  Not the best time to start marathon training.

2. I am injury-prone.  Tendonitis and joint problems have been my constant companions throughout my fitness career.  I use the term “fitness career” rather than “athletic career” because I am not an athlete.

3. I am not an athlete.

4. I’m not exactly in the best shape of my life.  I’ve been in the gym for the past couple years (see #2 above), mostly using an elliptical because that’s a lot easier on the ol’ joints.  There’s just something about a gym that diminishes fitness inspiration, at least for me.  So, I’m not working out like I should…or as often as I should.

5. 26.2 miles.  All together…the same day.

6.  Chicago in October is bound to be chilly.  I’m from Texas, where we roast a good 9 months out of the year.  I don’t do chilly too well.

7. I will have to do hard-core training in Texas.  In the summer.  Which will be like training in the devil’s house.

8.  It is impossible to find shoes that fit.  I’m not even using “impossible” to mean “difficult,” I actually do mean impossible.  I’m wearing shoes that are 2A, which means “really scrawnily narrow,” and my heels still slip.  I could be wrong, but I’m thinking heel slippage could cause a problem somewhere in the 26.2 miles.

9. I have never even run a half marathon.

10. I played ultimate frisbee last night.  And I COULD NOT BREATHE.  Now, I have a touch of asthma, but it’s usually not too bad.  But our frisbee league started last night, and the park we play at is on the edge of a lake, and the humidity was bad anyway and…well, I took my maximum daily inhaler allowance, and I was still struggling.  Although this could be because of #4, but I’m blaming it on the lake.  Chicago, for those of you who don’t know, is also located next to a lake.  A really big one.

 11.  I hate Gatorade.  There’s only one flavor, out of the 10,586 flavors that they have, that is decent.  It’s just Kool-Aid for grownups, and I didn’t even like that stuff as a kid.  But everyone knows you have to drink sports drinks while running a marathon.

12. I don’t like large crowds.  45,000 people, all running the same course.

13. Because we will be running for World Vision, it will involve fundraising.  I am horrible at fundraising.

 Wow, more reasons than I thought.  Maybe I should rethink this…Here are my reasons for running:

1. It’s for World Vision.  So there will be a purpose behind the pain.

2. I know 2 other people – Lisa, the instigator, and Sabrina – who will be running.  So we can train together too.  I’m somewhat of a hermit but an undertaking of this magnitude seems more manageable with camaraderie.

3. If I ever did want to run a marathon, now is the time to do it.  No kids, still relatively young.  Now, when I’m 55 and decide to run one, I have two options: “I’ve already done that, why bother?” or “I’ve already done that, and now I’ve given birth to (however many) children, this will be a piece of cake.”

4. I want to get in better shape.

5. I never set goals for myself.  Probably because I usually figure I can’t meet the goals, so I should just mosey on through life.  This is a goal which involves a registration fee, so I have to follow through.  Wasting $110 is not an option for me.

6. I have an office job.  I need some excitement in my life.

 So, there you have it.  Only with my math skills is 6 greater than 13.