year 1


Here is the original about page for this project:

About this Project

On October 1 2017, I will be running the Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon. My first marathon. I’ve been running since June of 2011 and finally feel ready to take on the distance. As part of a celebration and sustained focus on running, and to help keep me inspired and motivated over the long months of training, I’ve decided to embark on a new story project about running.

Inspired by Poverty Creek Journal, which I just finished reading, this story project is structured around a daily log of my training. As I briefly record some details of my run, I hope to add in reflections on running, reading, writing, thinking, feeling, engaging, surviving (post-2016) and being/becoming.

Update: 2 September 2017

On August 4th, my kneecap slipped out of place and then slipped back in again. It has caused a lot of problems: a swollen knee, a quad that won’t fire, a leg that won’t straighten, or lift when straight, a body/spirit that can’t run for at least a month and, most likely, the end of a marathon dream. This final verdict on the marathon will come early next week, but I’ve already (mostly) accepted that it’s over.

Not running in the marathon is deeply disappointing, but not the end of this project, which was never really just about training for a marathon but about fully engaging, paying attention, discovering how to train, developing new relationships with my body and learning how to write and how to live, joyfully and with less reticence. I will continue to do all of these things and, when healed, to run.

What are my goals (so far) for this project? (jan)

  • To document the process of training for my first marathon for myself and for my kids, who might want to learn more about who I am/what I do and think at some point in their lives
  • To learn and write about running: on the joy of running, on writers who run and runners who write
  • To experiment with new ways to craft and share stories that are honest and that help me to more authentically express who I am and what I believe in
  • To push at the rigid split between Sara-the-thinker (mind) and Sara-the-runner (body)
  • To envision training outside of the limited model of discipline
  • To deconstruct (critically analyze/play with/transform) the narrative form of “my running story”
  • To stay healthy and injury-free and to care for my knees
  • To experiment with even more ways to tell my stories online…and to learn the skills (and the code) I need to build those projects myself
  • To work with others, especially my husband Scott, to gather more images/footage of my running and to use those in my stories
  • To give particular attention to how Best’s disease* affects my running/experiences out in the world

*Originally I was diagnosed with Best’s Disease, a form of macular dystrophy. Two years later, this diagnosed was changed to cone dystrophy, a very similar disease.