I want my feminism to be a feminism of daydreaming. I want my feminism to believe in the transformative power of imagining the impossible. I want my feminism to stop chasing this faux equality that puts us on the race to be better managers of exclusion and, instead, gives us the possibility of re-thinking a future where we no longer have underclasses within the underclass. I do not want any more of this reactive feminism that is devoted to creating opportunities for the few that are allowed in detriment of the millions whose only role is to cheer other women’s success in the name of sisterhood. I want a feminism of utopias and imagination.
Then, maybe, we will be able to have it all. Even though probably, “all” would be something entirely different than how it is defined today.
1. Your Favorite Tea Salon - tea is allowed but the smell of the delicious miso ramen soup will torture you for the full 90 minutes you’re there, leading you to consider gnawing your own arm or your colleague’s face. Neither is advisable.
2. Pinterest - those cheesy, bacon crockpot hash browns that look greasy and gross on most days will - today - appear creamy and delightful even though you don’t like cheese or bacon. Beware: your palate is changing.
3. Enjoyment. This one is easy. Nothing and no one is enjoyable today. Do not plan on any laughter or fun. Not gonna happen.
It’s been three weeks since I ran the inaugural Asheville Marathon in Asheville, NC. And while I had absolutely decided that marathons are dumb after running the Columbus Marathon last October, there were a few reasons that I decided to run this particular marathon so soon.*
I have determined once and for all that I hate road races. They’re hard on my body and while the crowd support is awesome, I’m actually a very solitary runner. I love to run the paths through fields and trees all by myself. I find that this alone time is one of my favorite parts of running. It’s where I tune in, recalibrate, and find myself again. Road races, on the other hand, are full of…uh…roads…people…and very few forests. The Asheville race was 1/3 paved and 2/3 trail on a beautiful course with lakes, vineyards, trees, and mountains hills.
Getting away from it all. When I ran Columbus last year, my schedule looked like this: get the kids to bed, go to bed about 10 minutes after that, wake up and run a marathon, come home and take Zane to aikido. There was no sense of specialness or space to the race. By getting away - an 8 hour drive! - to Asheville, SRH and I got a weekend away, and I had more time to mentally prepare for the race. Plus, it just felt special: different town, dinners out without the wee beasts, some shopping, sleeping in and reading a trashy novel were all part of the weekend.
Being with friends. We met SRH’s close friend and his partner for the weekend. Originally, one of those aforementioned people - I won’t put them on blast - thought they might run with me. (For the record, that would have been a total bummer because - see above - I like to run alone). Anyway. With a running partner or not, the weekend was full of friends and laughter and hanging out in a way that’s not usually possible for any of us.
I like winter training. Sure, I complain about the cold. I hate an ice bath after running in 20 degree weather. Strapping on Yak Trax for a run on snow and ice stinks. It’s hard to get out of a warm bed to run in the dark, but as with so many things in running, I actually sorta like the things I hate. So, if I didn’t run a spring marathon, I wasn’t going to get to experience the winter training that I so loathe love for another full year. Plus, I figured I’d train in Ohio (cold) and race down south (not so cold, maybe even nice) then the race becomes relatively easier. It’s like training at altitude, which all the world class athletes - and 4:30 marathoners - do.
I came into the race missing one of my 20-mile training runs - work has been crazy this year, but feeling more fit than I have in any of my previous efforts. I was well fueled (thank you Tupelo Honey cafe) and fairly well rested. (This is all relative, you understand, I have two children under 10 and not-so-secretly believe that food and sleep are for the weak.).
So I felt fairly confident, but I had two significant areas of worry: the weather and the race support.
I’m going to write a recap post from my second marathon (summary: columbus. last month. meh. it was okay. crowded. 4:32:07), but I’m actually more excited to say that I think I’ve found my next race: the inaugural Asheville Marathon on March 3.
(And if you didn’t know I ran another marathon, it’s probably because I stink at updating this blog and/or telling people about my life.)