Almost Heaven, West Virginia

I’m heading to Williamson, West Virginia Friday morning to visit a best friend and yes, we’re running a marathon on Saturday! Runcations, my favorite. I’m basically a big bag of emotions right now. The week before a marathon always makes me feel some type of way. I’m excited to see Maria & Matt and to race, but the nerves are starting to shake.

Above picture is from mid-race last year.

The Hatfield McCoy Marathon, a challenging yet scenic race that starts in Kentucky and ends in West Virginia. I ran the 1/2 last year so I know what I’m in for, at least for the first 13.1 miles. I’m psyching myself out because my knees were hurting after my first marathon last year and this was only 3 weeks post-race. I’m in much better shape this time around (physically and mentally) so I know I’ll have an improved experience. ESPECIALLY because I have my best friend by my side again! My two biggest concerns; Blackberry Mountain and the heat. Blackberry Mountain begins around mile 6 and is a mile of hard work to get over the top. The heat concerns me because it’s usually 80+ degrees by 10am. It hasn’t really been hot here in Vermont the last 2 weeks so we’ll see how it goes.

Last year, we met a man at the expo who has run 650+ marathons and was scheduled to run his 700th later in the year. I wish I could remember his name because he is definitely a voice of reason behind my quest to run a marathon in each state. I really hope that he’s there again! Could you imagine though? 700 marathons?! He said that he had one on schedule every week for the rest of the year. That just absolutely blew my mind and totally inspired me.

This race also had a lot of Marathon Maniacs and 50 Staters running, which made for an even better atmosphere. It’s fun to talk with them throughout the race to see where they’ve been & where they’re going, their favorite races (or the best of the worst), and to get advice on becoming a better runner. After Saturday, I will be eligible to join the Marathon Maniacs club and I’m really excited about it! Mostly so I can buy a shirt (LOL) but also because it was on my goal list for the year and I’ll be able to check it off.

All in all, I’m looking forward to a weekend of “No Fuedin, Just Runnin“!

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