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Day 22: The last long run

Well, THAT didn't go according to my plan.

Today was my last long run before the Boston Marathon. It was supposed to be a 21 miler on the marathon course, my last in a series I've been running with my charity team.

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But then life happened.

And I was up and down all night long.

I got about 3 hours sleep total when my alarm went off for the time I had to get up to get ready to leave the house to meet my group in the city (this is when I hate living nearly 2 hours away.)

It was NOT going to happen. I could barely function. I don't need a LOT of sleep, but I feel if you're going to run 21, you need more than 3 hours.

So, I made sure the family was taken care of, and went back to bed. A few hours later, I got up and headed straight for the door.

I still had 21 miles to run, despite the fact it wasn't going to be where I was hoping to run it.

In a way, running alone felt fitting today. I wasn't buoyed by my teammates and friends, I had no water stops to look forward to, I had no support. It was just me out there. I had to push and rely on myself.

After last year, being on the finish, the biggest struggle in training for me has not been the mileage (though that has bee TOUGH, the toughest). Instead, it's been battling myself -- my demons -- my memories, my fears.

Today, the accomplishment was not that I ran 21 miles in what I consider a solid amount of time, but rather the fact that I was tough enough to get through it alone.

Marathon day, it will be so awesome to have people on the sidelines, complete strangers, cheering collectively for me and everyone else running.

But today, on the last long run, these were miles just for me.

Training for Boston has helped to make me strong again just a year after I felt weaker than I ever thought.

In 22 days, I'm not sure what I'll feel.

But I know I'll finish strong. This journey has taught me how to do that.


Elizabeth is running the Boston Marathon for charity. To learn more about her cause or donate, please visit her here.