Mikala Shremshock (MM7087, HF14614, DA2414)
I started my running journey in 2010 with a 5k local race. I’m not even sure I knew what a marathon distance was at that point. Then some friends from my running community inspired (also known as peer pressured) me to start running more and longer and eventually to qualify for Boston. After running Boston for the first time in 2014, I learned about the World Majors. I had done some destination marathons to Cuba and Iceland, so I focused on completing the six world majors. I lived in Chicago at the time, so that was an easy one to jump into for Fall 2014. Next was NYC. I had entered the lottery several times – no luck. Then, I started training to meet the difficult qualifying standard to get entry. Ironically, the same year I qualified, I also got in on the lottery. I’ll take it! 2016 NYC was a bit cold at the start but the crowd support of that race is unparalleled!
I was accepted on my first try for the Berlin lottery. I ran that race on a beautiful September day in 2018 alongside (and by alongside, I mean several hours behind) Eliud on his record setting run that day!
The next Spring I traveled to Tokyo for one of my most miserable days of racing. It was raining from the time we loaded into the corrals until later in the evening. They even handed out bath towels instead of heat sheets at the finish. Everyone was soaked. In retrospect, I was very lucky to decide to run Tokyo the following Spring of 2019. With all the cancellations that would happen due to the Covid-19 pandemic, many people have been unable to run Tokyo until next year.
Because of all the cancellations, I finally gave up on the London Lottery and traveled with FIT for the October edition of the London Marathon this year.
The forecast for the marathon was similar to Tokyo – torrential downpour and cold. The day turned out to be a beauty. Cool and overcast in the morning, the day warmed and the sun shone most of the race. The crowds were amazing (NYC, calm down. No one does fan support better than you!) and the race was so well run.
At the finish, I collected my beautiful (and gigantic) World Major Marathons Medal! It was such an opportunity to reflect back on my running journey. I’ve seen so much of the world and shared this running journey with incredible people.
While some runners complete this whole six-star journey in as short as a single calendar year, I have enjoyed taking nearly a decade to complete. The running world has changed so much in this time and yet, no matter where I run next, I know the running community will be just as weird, wonderful and welcoming as always.
Is this truly the end of my six-star journey? Well, Abbot plans to add another world major next year, and I already have run a few of these races multiple times. Sounds like I may be on the path for another go around! See you on the road and hope to share some miles and smiles with you soon!
Photo and post credit Mikala Shremshock (MM7087, HF14614, DA2414)