Marine Corps Marathon

I returned today from 4 days in DC with my girls. We enjoyed taking in the many sites, including the White House, the Washington Monument, Iwo Jima, a sobering time at Arlington National Cemetery, and a tour of the Capitol set up by Ben Wright. (Thanks, Ben.) We had a great time, despite the fact that my almost-4-year-old spent Friday stepping in just about every puddle in the very wet city, and the fact that she was more impressed with squirrel sightings than the Lincoln Memorial or the Smithsonian. What are you gonna do?!


I also ran the Marine Corps Marathon, and was able to finish it in 5:00:00, exactly. Had I known the exact time, getting in a second earlier would have been nice, though my legs may very well have said ‘No.’ Anyway, that’s 22 minutes better than last year’s time in the Akron Marathon, which was encouraging, and it was good enough to earn me 13,981st place. (Not a bad epitaph, eh?) It was also 30 minutes more than I was hoping for, but it was a tough day. I was unable to run for the last month due to a hip issue. The off-time helped my hip, but the rest of my body rebelled a bit yesterday. I started cramping at 13 miles. That’s not good. I knew it was going to be a miserable second half, and it was. Ugh. I ran the first half in 2 hours, which is good for me—about 9 minute miles for a long run. Obviously, that means I ran (and stretched, and walked, and limped) the second half in 3 hours—about 14.5 minute miles. Yuck. (Split times are show here,  where it is clear that I was slo-w-i-n-g d–o–w—n.)

Anyway, there’s really not a bad finish time for a marathon, and I improved on my first. Besides, I got to run all over DC, which was cool.

Thank the Lord for a great weekend!


Here are a few more non-family pics of The Capitol, The White House, and Iwo Jima.


22 Responses

  1. I forgot to mention that we took in the Sunday PM service at Capitol Hill Baptist Church. It was a blessing, and I may blog on it soon.

  2. Chris,

    Congrats! Just finishing a marathon is a gigantic achievement. I salute you. You may even have inspired me to take up running again!

  3. Congratulations. Enjoyed the pics.

  4. Thanks, guys. Very much.

    Here are a couple more pics: the Library of Congress, the Supreme Court, the Tomb of the Unknowns, Kennedys’ grave site. I also enjoyed getting my girls’ picture by the painting of Pocahontas’ baptism in the Capitol Rotunda (about which I blogged here).

    Question: what is this building? I took the picture from the 2nd floor of the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History. Impressive place.

  5. I could be wrong, but I think the building in the picture that you took was the museum of all of Bill Clinton’s flings as President.

  6. Congrats Chris. Proud of you brother!

  7. Stink! I wish we had known you were here and had the opportunity to meet you and your family outside of cyberspace! Congrats on running the marathon. My mom’s cardiologist runs it, too, so at least there was good medical care available if needed. :)

    Given the geography you describe, Brent thinks that the building in your picture is the Department of Commerce. (It could have been worse–we first thought that it was the IRS building. :) )

    Sorry your visit was so rainy–although we were very grateful for it, given our serious drought this summer. And if it makes you feel better, our 13 year old still loves puddles!

  8. Lyn,

    Somehow I didn’t connect you to DC. Sorry! We would have enjoyed the fellowship opportunity.

    Now, I’m hesitant to disagree with Brent, but I think I hit every angle of the Dept. of Commerce, as it shares a building with the National Aquarium. I remember this because, after walking all the way around it looking for the entrance only to discover that there is a significant fee to get in, the fact that it is connected to the Dept. of Commerce struck me as particularly fitting. (Wow. That was a long sentence.)

    Anyway, I don’t think so. But I could be wrong.

    While I’m sorting through pictures, The Treasury Department, where you are greeted by a statue of a very dapper Alexander Hamilton, is impressive. Every building in the city is grand, I think.

  9. We are in Fairfax, just outside of D.C. Brent works a couple of blocks from the White House, and has the “joy” of commuting each day.

    Let us know if you make it out our way again! We would enjoy getting to fellowship and show you around town.

    Regarding your picture–go to and search for “Constitution Avenue NW & 12th Street NW.” There are two Commerce buildings. The Aquarium is part of the one that runs between 14th and 15th Streets. (This is the one you walked around.) The Commerce building in your picture is the 2nd building, which is across the street diagonally from the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History and more directly across the street from the Museum of American History.

    Brent says that the thing in the center (where the columns and triangular roof pattern are) is the Mellon Auditorium. Its architecture is really exquisite.

  10. Brent is right. Here’s the Google hybrid of the building. Thanks!

  11. Here’s the Google hybrid showing the relationship of the two Commerce buildings. Interesting.

  12. Chris,

    Looks like you got to see a good deal of the sights while you were there. Every time I’m there, I feel like I”ve run a marathon with all the walking on the mall I end up doing. I always enjoy visiting DC.

  13. Andy, it occurred to me that walking around DC carrying a heavy back-pack and (occasionally) an almost-four-year-old probably didn’t help me during the marathon. Not making excuses, of course, but it is a walk-til-you-drop place.

    The things I really regret missing: Vietnam Memorial (though I’ve been there in the past), WW2 Memorial & Jefferson Memorial. Next time.

  14. Semper Fi for an HONORARY Marine because you ran the Marine Corps Marathon!

    I need to get BACK to running again!

  15. Chris,

    Don’t know whether to congratulate you or tell you you’re nuts! The winner of the Marine marathon a few years ago was an Air Force captain named Juarez (Marines must have hated that!!!). He happened to be the head of our basic training when I went through. Boy, was he a load of laughs… all you runners are crazy. Join the club of us “sane” cyclists who’ll bike 100 miles at a time…

    Glad you guys had a good time in D.C. Did you get to see the changing of the guard at Arlington? Very moving.

  16. Just a note to Bryan; Marines train to defend our country, so they don’t have time training to run marathons! Air Force guys have all the time in the world to train for marathons! Desk jockeys…! Air Force, Inc! ;)


  17. Doug,

    Good one! Don’t know why anyone with any sense would train to run 26 miles when we’ve got all those jets! I thoroughly enjoyed my 4 years behind a desk w/ the AF and will heartily support all 4 branches (Army, Navy, Air Force, and Coast Guard) as they defend our freedom. (Glad you don’t have my address…)

    In all honesty, I love the Marines. I just knew at 32yrs old, I coundn’t have made it through basic. In the AF the worst part of OCS was no room service :-)

  18. Chris,

    Congrats on your second Marathon! I get on your blog from time to time. I don’t know if you remember me telling you while we were in Greece last year that I would really like to run a marathon or at least a half marathon when I come back for furlough next year. It is hard to train here in Cambodia but I might have time during furlough–plus it will help me from getting fat from all the good cooking missionaries get while traveling on deputation and furlough. :-)

    Anyways, I was curious if you could email me or send me some advice in getting started in training. I ran cross-country in high school and college but that was ages ago. What was your general running schedule? Which books did you recommend to read for the marathon? I have one by Higdon (not sure of spelling).

    Also, by the way, my family has started a family/ministry blog as of last week with the birth of our third child: Susanna Isobel. It is I would not call myself a blogger yet but we set up this site primarily for our prayer letters and communication with our family. I hope to have some missions discussions in the future on the blog, once I get the hang of things. Getting on to just see pictures of my little princess will be worth it!! :-)

    Congrats again!

    Until the net is full,

    Chris Seawright

  19. Yes, Chris, I remember. I’d enjoy that if we can work it out. As far as a book on marathon-ing, I’m all ears. I could probably use the help. I’ve king of been winging it. :)

    I’ve enjoyed watching the Air Force / Marine Corps cheap shots. Very nice!

    FWIW, part of the reason my brother and I chose to run this marathon is that our dad was/is a Marine. We thought it would be a neat way to honor him. I’m glad we did it, but next time we want to honor him for something, I’m buying him a card. Yikes.

    Seriously, he is a godly man, and I thank God for him. I certainly appreciate his love for and service of his country. I was glad we could do this together for our jarhead dad who could still whip us both.

  20. Congratulations Chris . . . I’m proud of both you and your older brother Jeff for such an undertaking. Now that you have done it, give your body a break and start WALKING . . . in my humble opinion, such long runs are not good for the body. At least you guys didn’t keel over like the original marathon runner did! But don’t push it! You are greatly loved and needed here!


  21. Hey, running is good for us. We might be in wheel chairs in 10 years, but our tickers will be in good shape. :)

    Besides, I don’t ask you to stop hunting.

    Speaking of congratulations and hunting, I heard that Dan got a nice 6×6 bull on your hunting trip last week. Nice! Send me a picture!

  22. Chris, next time you see your dad, tell him, “SEMPER FI” from a former Marine!

    BTW, there are only 2 EX-Marines (there ought to be more, i.e. F. Lee Bailey, John Murtha, and a few others that are too left-wing for me). Those 2 EX-Marines are Lee Harvey Oswald, and Charles Whitman (Texas sniper)!

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