To Run or Not to Run the Marine Corps Marathon

It’s been a month of uncertainty and heartbreak for me, professionally.

My husband and I had just recovered (barely) from him being laid off from his job in May when I received the news three weeks ago that our entire workforce was laid off.

It came as a shock and I scrambled to apply all over the place, reconnect with friends and former colleagues and figure out what to do next.

The first 10 days following the lay off, I was on my own while my husband (with my blessing!) hunted six hours away. So what did that mean? Well, it didn’t mean a whole lot of running since I needed to watch the kids full-time and pick them up and drop them off at school. The handful of times I managed a run, it turned to doing a whole lot of walking…and processing.

No one anticipates a lay-off and our circumstances were pretty extreme in this case.

During the day, it’s all applying for jobs, taking care of kids and finding some personal time for myself. My only rule? Don’t look too far ahead; focus on just what I can do TODAY.

…Oh ya, and then there was that time a week ago when I was rear-ended sitting at a light…

So now, I sit here nearly a month in, picking up the pieces and clutching a $214 weekly unemployment check staring a month ahead for the first time.

Ahead to the Marine Corps Marathon on October 25 in Washington D.C.; the event I’ve SO looked forward to for the past six months. Training has been BRUTAL through these intense summer months and I’ve battled to get my time and/or miles in to stay on track.

Ahead, wondering what my job situation will look like in the weeks and months to come.

I’ve always said “running is 90% mental” and this is where it truly hits. Every mile, my mind is spinning and processing. I’m unable to focus as I prep for my training run. My body craves sleep to stave off the intensity of the day.

And, I think about what is truly “wise” in this situation:

  • If we’re struggling to make sure our bills are all paid on time (they have been), then is it wise to spend such a large chunk of money and still go?
  • If I’m still not sure what my job future looks like, is it wise to plan to be gone for a week? Or, do we NEED to do it, having gone through one of the most stressful summers of our lives?

I’m not sure what the answer is at this point. Flights are booked, but can be banked for future use. My race fee is already paid and I can’t defer or transfer at this point. Half of our time in DC will be spent at a friend’s home (thank goodness! Always my preference to stay with friends anyway). I can cancel our hotel at no cost.

Not running the marathon certainly seems like the easier choice.

But, is it the right one?

marine corps marathon
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