Remember a while ago when I mentioned it was marathon season?
Well, it seems my marathon went missing.
I looked all over London for it… from Tower Bridge to the Battersea Power Station, and I couldn’t find it anywhere.
I looked around the British Museum and the Tate Modern but, nope, no marathon there.
I walked through Canary Wharf, through Soho, up to The Mall, around Buckingham Palace and, still, no marathon.
Somewhere around Richmond, I saw some runners. “Hey, maybe they know where the marathon’s gone”, I thought.
I followed them into Richmond Park, but they soon disappeared over the horizon. I stopped to look at a herd of deer.
“Do you know where the marathon went?” I asked.
They just blinked back at me and turned away.
I left Richmond Park and entered Wimbledon Common, thinking maybe I’d find my marathon there, but it was still nowhere to be found.
Fully exhausted, I did what any thinking person would do. I went to the pub to have a pint.
In case you haven’t already noticed, I missed a run in London thanks to my recent foot injury.
At my last physio appointment before flying out, I asked my physiotherapist to level with me.
“So,” I asked, “what do you think? Can I run London?”
“Well, you could, but you won’t walk for at least a week after.”
Fully enabled, I tried smuggling my running shoes in my suitcase.
Unfortunately, I got caught by the no-fun-police (aka my husband).
“What are those?” he asked.
“Umm, just shoes,” I replied, quickly zipping up my suitcase.
“Sensible walking shoes for people with busted feet.”
“They’re running shoes, aren’t they?”
He unzipped my suitcase, and removed my running shoes. “No running, Fleck. You don’t want to injure yourself any more. Don’t you want to run your other races this year?”
“Bu… but… but, London…”
He handed me my shoes, and put a hand on my shoulder. “If you run, and you get hurt, you’re going to ruin your vacation. What will you do if you can’t walk? Do you want to spend your holiday sitting in our friend’s flat nursing a busted foot?”
I snuffled and put the shoes back in the closet. “No.”
I spent most of our flight telling myself it was okay to miss the run. I reminded myself that I had other races lined up this summer, that I could run London another year, that I’d still have fun on our vacation even if I didn’t run.
None of it was helping my mood.
On what would have been run day, we woke up to a rare sunny London morning. Our friend’s flat was flooded in light.
“So, what do you guys want to do today, then?” Our friend asked.
“Run,” I growled.
My husband shook his head and snickered. “It’s a nice day. Let’s walk about the city and see where we end up.”
And so we did.
We walked the length and breadth of Central London, through 2 parks, past castles, in and out of museums and shops and, of course, a few pubs along the way. We walked for so long that before we knew it, the day was done and we were sitting in a pub in Wimbledon.
“What a marathon that was,” our friend said.
When we got home, my friend’s words still rang in my mind, so I went to the computer, and retraced our steps around the city. To my shock, we’d actually walked a marathon.
Case of the missing marathon closed, I laced up my shoes and went for a quick 5K around the neighborhood.
Afterwards, I poured myself a pint of ale, put my feet up, and celebrated my many marathons to come.
Happy National Running Day, everyone.
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