Tuesday, April 21, 2009

My Hero

How many women can say their husband is their hero?
At least one: me!

Justin has been training for the marathon since October of last year. That's seven months of training! He was very strict with his running schedule, making sure he followed the official marathon training schedule. He somehow made time every Sunday for a long run (several hours, in some cases). Talk about discipline!
On Sunday, April 19, Justin ran in the Go! St. Louis marathon. It was terrible weather: rainy, cold, windy. He, along with 15,000 other participants, braved the wet weather anyway. I went along for moral support. Accompanying me were a bag filled with dry clothes, water, snacks and things to keep me busy during the run, the biggest umbrella I could find, and a camp chair. I was probably hauling an additional 30 pounds.
After a scary Metrolink ride, we arrived downtown in a mass of fellow runners. The ocean of people stretched for blocks in every direction, and the announcer soon called the runners to the starting line. Justin went to go stretch, and I took the opportunity to find a prime location to take pictures. Fortunately, the nasty weather kept many onlookers inside or under the shelter of nearby buildings. This allowed me to set up shop mere feet from the starting line.
And the runners were off! People streamed past the starting line for a good 15 minutes. The rain continued. I huddled under my giant umbrella. After all the participants had crossed the starting line, I met up with Justin's parents. Together we walked to the six mile mark to watch the runners pass by. Justin ran by, smiling and giving a thumbs up. Now it was time to wait. I knew it would probably be another two hours or so before he would be close to the finish line. The three of us wandered to the St. Louis Bread Company near the stadium to grab something to eat. (Their Cobblestones are fabulous.) After a leisurely snack, we packed up and walked back to where the race would be finishing. Already, almost 80 marathon runners had crossed the finish line! It wasn't even 10:00 a.m.! We wrestled our way to a good viewing spot close to the finish line. We waiting patiently, searching for a glimpse of a red baseball cap.
There! I saw him! It wasn't even half past 10:00 and there he was. I snapped a couple of action shots of him coming down the finish track. Final time, 3:19:57. Amazing!

He set his mind on something, and he did it. What a huge accomplishment to finish a marathon! My husband is my hero.

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