I’m just finishing up a 9-day, 90-hour push for a client. This one’s a marathon, not a sprint. And as I typed that, I remembered that the runner of the first marathon—the ancient Greek who ran 26.2 miles to give the king some important news—died upon arrival.

Further enriching the analogy. The “important news” was that Greece had just won the Battle of Marathon. In my current state of mind, that feels appropriate.

Actually, we’re lucky the world decided to go with Plutarch’s version of the story. Herotodus—a usually reliable Greek historian—talks about a runner making a 150-mile round trip. Imagine that as an Olympic sport.

Since those halcyon days in the ancient world, humans have become adept at inventing ways to torture themselves keep exercise interesting. Competitors in Ironman triathlons cover just over 140 miles in as few as eight hours—although, unlike the ancient Greeks, they have access to bicycles for part of that. Not to mention sports drinks.

I’m not sure what the equivalent of a bicycle would be for me in my writing marathon. But, this morning, I would give my kingdom for it.