42 KM: One Year After the Decision

Written by: Jacqueline Newell

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As August approaches, so does the one year anniversary of my decision to run a full marathon. When I first arrived in Argentina in March 2015, I told myself that I wanted to run the Buenos Aires Marathon in October. However, when July rolled around and I hadn’t trained, I had to make other plans.My friend Mari convinced me that we should run la Maraton Costa Pacifico in Vina del Mar, Chile. Knowing nothing about the race nor Chile, I was easily convinced.

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Running the half marathon in Buenos Aires in September became my jumping off point. After returning from the trip, I headed straight into marathon training. My first week of training, I didn’t understand any of the training materials. Imagine receiving an e-mail in Spanish and marathon speak that looks like this:

Ju: 2.5k + estir +10 repeticiones de 800mts al 70% vo2máx, recuperando  400mts al 50% + 2.5k en reg + estir -total 17k-

After sending the e-mail to different running friends for translation, I set off on one of the hardest journeys I have ever experienced. Each weekend consisted of 21KM or 25KM training runs. Some were long, cold, solo runs and others took place under the hot summer sun. As they got longer, I was often able to convince someone to keep me company.
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As weeks passed, one by one the other runners dropped out of training. When it came to the peak week, Mari and I were the last two standing. Our peak week consisted of a 30KM = 18.6 mile run. With the help of our friends, we organized a trip to Cacheuta to get in the run. Riding bikes and running with us, our friends handed us gels and water bottles and cheered us on. We finished tired, sore, incredibly sweaty and incredibly grateful for our friends.

Below is a collection of photos from my three months of training including my “bodyguards” who ran with me at night, my Guru and those who joined me for FriendsGiving 2015.
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