Dear Friends, Family and Neighbors,
The London Marathon was a RunningBrooke category-closer! I've now run all of the world marathon majors: London ( 4/17/11), Berlin (9/08), Boston (4/09, 4/08, 4/07, 4/06), New York (11/08) and Chicago (10/06). Berlin, by far, was my favorite; the yellow Linden trees framed by crystal-clear blue skies, the crisp, fall air, the chaotic frenzy of race-start and the male spectator swatting me on my behind -- with a rolled-up program -- shouting 'Run! Run! in Italian.' Felt fast and free as I sliced through the wind.
Total Marathons Done: 34
Continents Completed: 5 of 7, with Antarctica (3/12) and Africa left
States: 23 finished
Marathon Majors: done!
To date, $64,500+ has been raised. Every penny goes to 5 vital Alexandria-based charities supporting struggling kids and families -- Child and Family Network Centers,Community Lodgings,The Reading Connection, Girls on the Run, NoVA, ACTion Alexandria).
Big Sur Marathon. May 1st. One of the most scenic marathons in the world but Yikes, it's tomorrow! I'm finishing this update from my hotel room in Monterrey.
Asthma Awareness Day. May 4th. Join the conversation with me and members of congress on Capitol Hill. I'm super-excited to be on the panel of speakers and then be the featured athlete in the Health Fair. Come learn how Asthma doesn't have to slow you down! $400 worth of FREE testing.
The Right Now!!!
Spring2ACTion. May 5th-7th. A fantastic 3-day online fund-raising event where it's the number of new, unique donors NOT the donation amount that moves a charity up the leader board and eligible to win significant cash prizes. Save the dates to make your donation/s. It can be as small as $10.00 (2 Starbucks coffees). All money raised will go directly to at-risk Alexandrians.
And so, without further ado, the London Marathon recap:
Brooke and Shirley
Favorite-mom and me on our way
London was just beginning to gear-up for the Royal Wedding Royal Wedding when Favorite Mom -- joining me to celebrate her birthday milestone -- and I were there. The city was spruced-up and spit-polished but not too busy. We were able to enjoy the city without fighting the crowds. Warm, sunny and beautiful, it was the height of Spring and perfect for walking -- and we did... Big Ben, Westminster Hall/Parliament, Victoria Embankment, St. James Park, Wellingon Arch, Hyde Park, Kensington Gardens, Portobello Road, Embassy Road, Kensington Palace, Albert Memorial, Buckingham Palace.
In retrospect, it was extremely powerful to have walked through centuries of history and to have been in the very same spots, where the wedding and royal procession took place yesterday! I kept shouting at the TV, I was just there... I saw that too! We heard the same organ pipes in Westminster Abbey, saw the sun streaming through the same stained-glass windows, came down the same center aisle. London was full of breathtaking beauty and grandeur. We walked the royal procession route -- from Westminster Abbey, though Wellington Arch to Buckingham Palace -- along Constitution Hill. I saw the kisses. I thought I wouldn't care/be moved by the Royal Wedding, but I was.
daily procession through Wellington Arch
*Factoid. All Royal Processions, ie: Coronations, Weddings and Funerals have used the identical route from Westminster Abbey, and down Constitution Hill to Buckingham Palace, for centuries.
Spending time with favorite-mom; we had a blast. No arguments and no one got run over!
*Factoid. We were due to make this trip in 4/10 but had to reschedule because of the Icelandic volcano eruptions and subsequent travel issues.
Reuniting with Nick -- a Brit -- and Floyd -- from the mid-west. Originally meeting Santiago, Chile, the three of us ran the Easter Island marathon together. Tons of fun seeing them again.
*Factoid. Nick -- a Brit -- holds the Guinness Book of World Records for having the fastest cumulative marathon time for all 7 continents Go Nick!
The Marathon. It was a category-closer. What could be better than that?!
The Marathon. Suffice it to say that it just wasn't my day. Tired, with heavy legs. But hey, I'd run three marathons in March -- a double just two weeks prior to London. I guess I'm not invincible after all.
The Marathon. Here you go people. The only good thing I can say about the experience is that every step was one step closer to the finish line. Hot, tired, crowded, uninspired. Yuck.
Congratulations, you made it to the end! I'll be back in touch soon with loads of exciting updates. May is going to be a great month for the RunningBrooke Fund and Alexandria.
I saw this quote earlier today on FB: "You have a choice. You can throw in the towel...or you can use it to wipe the sweat off your face!" Cheers, now go out there and do something great!
* Factoid. Wellington Arch was built 1828 to celebrate the defeat -- led by the Duke of Wellington -- of Napoleon at Waterloo.