My Marathon

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My mom doesn’t deserve all the credit for ensuring I completed my first race. Three million checklists, a royal guard and a savage bloodhound were among the influencers. They hadn’t featured in my vision of a perfect marathon though—the wind whipping my hair away from my face and adrenaline coursing through my veins as I manage a podium finish. This list was just one of the many that peppered my bulletin board.

The night before my first practice run I marched around the house with the prep-run list—bananas, socks, shoes, water bottle and a 5 AM start time. With that resolve I hit the bed, only to wake up thrice that night.

Making checklists, losing sleep over them and setting up multiple alarms is my way of life. They keep me from losing my sanity despite the pace I’m running at. I only wish they were just as efficient in waking me up. 20 minutes past 5 AM, mom stormed into my room, “Are those alarms for me?” My checklists and planning had failed me. Mom had succeeded once again. Through the week we played tug of war, 5 AM was too early for her and too late for me. With 6 weeks left for the race, I was desperate to start earlier and run longer distances. “You can’t leave that early. It’s too dark—too dangerous.” mom insisted....

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