Andrea Askowitz

Author & Teacher

No. 28: My Achilles Heel

woman running

I started training for the Miami marathon because I’m a midlife crisis cliché. I ran cross-country in high school. The most I’d ever run was 10 miles, but I told myself since I was a kid that at 50, I’d run a marathon. I’m 50.

I did three miles, three times a week. Then four miles with cross-training — an hour of biking — on the off days. I added six miles and the next week, eight. Then nine. Then twelve.

Training was actually kind of fun. Not fun like when you laugh hard with a friend, but satisfying. After six miles, I got that endorphins high they talk about. Even a four-mile run in the morning relaxed me for the rest of the day. When my son came into my office last week and left his shoes and socks on the floor, instead of yelling across the house, I just picked them up. Later, I found both my kids on our new yellow couch surrounded by sticky granola wrappers. I said, “Sweeties, could you throw away your trash?” Running is a powerful drug — an antidepressant — and I was addicted.

Two weeks into training, my running partner, Aaron, sent me a nutrition guide for endurance athletes. When I piled my Thanksgiving plate two feet high, I told everyone at the table I was an endurance athlete. It felt good to be more than just a 50-year-old cliché.

It also felt good to eat like a hog. (READ FULL ESSAY HERE…)