An Athlete’s Perspective – Issue 10

An Athlete’s Perspective is a blog series of event and/or training experiences written firsthand by the athletes themselves. An Athlete’s Perspective is a completely unscripted and raw look into the mind and daily life of an athlete as they prepare for their next race. Readers will discover training regimens, eating tips, gear recommendations, and an uncut perspective into the lives of people like you and me.

Preparing to Pace the Austin Marathon

By: Albert Marino aka Moose Malloy

This Sunday, 12/3, is my next marathon. It still hasn’t fully sunk in, but it’s starting to. I’ve been training since June. Five and a half months. All that work….

athlete's perspective

Marino at Hagerman Pass.

For this cycle, I’ve upped my mileage to 90, which a year ago would have seemed like insanity. I’ve been doing my workouts with guys and gals that not long ago I considered way out of my league. I’m very proud of my improvements, and I am now confident enough to say that I’m going for a 2:45 at the California International Marathon. Unreal.

But whether I hit that goal or not, isn’t why I run. My personal motto is “The Path Is The Goal.” I run because I love running. I train because I love training. When I get up for my morning run, I don’t think about PRs or BQs. As I wait for my Garmin to connect, I look up and thank the moon and the stars for the gift of running. I discovered running basically by accident. It changed my life so profoundly that I won’t attempt to summarize it here. If I can pay it forward, then I’m game.

My first and only pacing duty took place a few years back when I convinced a few of my high school Cross Country kids to run the Austin Marathon. They absolutely killed it. Their time goal was modest, but they didn’t care about that. They simply wanted to take on a herculean task, and see what happens. Well, they finished, right alongside their coach. We cried, we hugged, then we sat down and contemplated the fact that we just ran twenty-six point two blessed miles! Lives were changed that day, and that’s a beautiful thing.

So while I look forward to my race, and I’m trying not to look too far beyond it. I am already looking forward to my pacing duties at the Decker Challenge and Austin Marathon, where I’ll pace the 3:35 group. I remember how important and inspirational my pacers were during my first two marathons and the idea that I can be that for others in pretty exciting. Crossing the finish line with a group of warriors that accomplished something that was beyond themselves, now that sounds like something worth doing. For those hours, we will be a family. There will be ups and there will certainly be downs. But together we will succeed, and it will be a beautiful day.