I’m putting together my stuff for the marathon.
It’s funny: I absolutely do not mind bringing special food. I got my baggies ready with my race nutrition (Eload and Carbo-Pro) and put together my pre-race breakfast (special rice crispy cereal with dried fruit; I’ll buy milk and bananas there). It’s actually kind of calming. I don’t have to worry about what they do or don’t supply at the race and I’ve got my tried-and-true breakfast coming with me. I’ve also stashed a few wheat-free energy bars in my purse, just in case there’s a long layover or something, and a few with my food, just in case I want something more race morning.
What I DO mind is the EpiPen. The freaking huge EpiPen. That I absolutely should…but don’t want to…carry with me on race day.
To be honest, I have not carried it on my long runs. Yes, I’ve carried my fast-acting Benadryl and my phone; the thinking here is that I’m not working hard enough to trigger an allergic reaction considering I’ve not had any of my trigger foods and, if I were to have some reaction, the Benadryl would buy me plenty of time to make a call and get some help. Perhaps that’s making a stupid gamble but I figure if it took something like six years to have my second incident, and that was WITHOUT all the precautions I now take; I’m sure I’ve got to be at an unusually intense level of activity to trigger my condition.
I do recognize that running a marathon is a condition where I should have everything I need to be safe and healthy in an emergency. Crowd conditions would make rescue difficult and it’s a situation where I will push myself. Which means carrying the damn EpiPen. And a phone. And the Benadryl. And all my race food.
Holy crap, the amount of stuff is daunting. My days of simply showing up at a marathon and running, unencumbered, are over. I don’t want to carry a giant pack for 26.2 miles. I haven’t minded the pack I’ve carried on long runs but I just tested it and all of the stuff simply will not fit when you include the ginormous tube of epinephrine. Perhaps I should just tie a roller bag aroung my waist and pull it along.
I think the main thing that bothers me about the EpiPen is that it represents that things can go wrong during a race, seriously wrong. And I’ve got just enough of a runner’s ego left to be bothered by the visual of me sporting a huge pack; it just screams “slow.”
And therein lies the real baggage I’m carrying: that runner’s ego. I think that the things that have happened to me over the last few years have all been things that should teach me to check my ego at the door. I should simply be thankful that I’m able to run the things I do–how many people can do what I do?
I better go dig out that bigger pack.