As if the pain in her feet and legs and the tears welling in her eyes weren’t confirmation enough that Sydney Morton had run her first marathon, friends along the mesh fence down the finishing chute screamed in joy after Morton’s feat.
“You did it,” hollered one girlfriend moments after Morton completed the Humana Rock ‘n’ Roll New Orleans Marathon in 4 hours, 52 minutes, 33 seconds.
“You’re a marathoner,” yelled another.
A 47-year-old Atlanta accountant, Morton ran her first half marathon four years ago. The 13.1-mile count is now up to 10. She expanded her race-day repertoire, participating in Ragnar Relays. But the marathon dream was put on hold. Married with two children and a full-time job, there were only so many hours in the day. But her son turned 16 and with that came the freedom of a driver’s license and less carpooling for mom. She committed to training for New Orleans, put in the miles and reached her goal.
“It feels amazing,” she said. “I can’t even put words to it. Right now, finishing standing up, no injuries … I am so happy. So happy.”