September 19, 2016: The Finish
If you told me 9 months ago that I was going to not only train but actually run and finish a marathon, I would have said you’re straight up crazy! When I first started the competition I was running intermittently. It was a great calorie burner but I hated it. It hurt, it was hard and it was boring. At that time the only running I was interested in was on the treadmill, where I could control the pace and zone out. In February I was convinced to sign up for a 15k and started venturing outside for training. Now I hate running on the treadmill. Running outside is much more interesting.
I spent all of my summer training for
yesterday. 26.2 miles! I still can’t believe it’s true. I am reminded quickly every time I move. My body is very angry with me. Not sure if any body talks about the aftermath. But the pain I feel today is worth the victory I felt yesterday!
Last week I prepared my body, tried to eat the right foods and drink enough water to fuel my body for the run. I felt like I was getting sick so I doubled up on vitamin C and some pre cold stuff I got from Tirzah. I managed to banish the cold. I wasn’t going to let it get in the way of my run. Training was unusual. We hadn’t had a big run for a couple weeks and we had several short runs just to keep our legs working.
My nerves were getting the best of me and I didn’t sleep much the night before the run. I woke up several times throughout the night and couldn’t go back to sleep after I woke up at 2. Kristen picked me up at 4. Our run was in Boring. We needed to leave earlier enough to get there and pick up our packets.
The event wasn’t huge and elaborate. They had first aid set up every 2 miles or so. The volunteers were wonderful!! They passed out water or Gatorade, and had a table set up with snacks. We had a pretty boring course, not so ironic since we were in Boring, Oregon and that was what they based all of their runs off of. We basically did a giant out and back looping through a couple communities on the way out and then down a separate trail out and back to turn around and do it all backwards. Faces started getting familiar because we would pass by each other through the loops.
Kristen and I started out together going strong and feeling good. I have discovered that if I slow down to much my body hurts worse than if I keep a faster pace. I have been gradually pulling away from Kristen in some of our training runs. My intentions were to stay with Kristen as long as possible because running by myself is so much harder! Kristen and I had previously talked about this and she let me know she was ok if I had to leave her. Neither of us had a time destination we both just wanted to finish. I started pulling away from her around mile 12. I even stopped and stretched at one point so she could catch up to me, and she demanded I not stop for her.
My mental state started breaking down around mile 20. I knew I still had a pretty big hill to go up and then back down. My quads began to spam a little bit, my right ankle kept twisting in on impact and my left knee was starting to ache. I knew my body was desperate for some salt. I wiped my forehead at one point and it felt like I was rubbing sand off of it. I had dried salt all over myself from sweating. Along the way I had been drinking water and Gatorade, I had a couple fig newton cookies from the stations and had taken a goo and some chews. My belly was not happy with all the sugar intake.
I kept a pretty good pace. My overall time was 05:23:42 for a pace of 12:21 / mile. I started slowing way down around mile 23. I stopped a couple times to walk and stretch out.
At mile 24 I got a message from Daniel asking how I was doing. At that point I wasn’t doing well. I was trying to figure out how the heck I was gonna finish this. My body was failing. I kept praying several times through the run. I told Daniel that I was struggling and not doing well. His response “you understand you will make it right? Do it. Cause you would not have 9 months ago. . .Do it cause you can and cause you control your body, your body doesn’t control you.”
That was exactly what I needed to finish. I came
around a bit of a corner right before mile 26 and there was Daniel and Tirzah! They ran the last little bit with me and watched as I sprinted to the finish. I finished!!!! 26.2 miles! I haven’t decided if I will ever do it again.
Everyone’s support has been amazing! I have awesome friends and family that have helped out with child care when Patrick was working. This wouldn’t have been possible without help from many of you. Thank you!!
I have a little less than 2 months left to take advantage of my free training and membership. My plan is to buckle down and focus on loosing the last 20 lbs so I can reach my goal when my time is up. It’s go time!