I look too happy here…how in the world did I muster a smile this morning? This is me preparing Peanut Butter sandwiches for our whole group.
Surprisingly, this morning wasn’t too difficult mentally. We were up at 4am, I showered and dressed and prepared our food. I also chugged some water! We had to be on the bus by 5:15am and we packaged our food to go. On the bus, I scarfed down my super-huge PB&B sandwich…I’m still not tired of my favorite combination.
The nerves came and went in flurries. We had a lot of time to kill this morning, and we hung out near the port-a-johns to empty our tanks (several times) before the race.
Notice the tye-dye shirt above: that is my husband’s that I donated to charity around mile 3. I figure, if I run enough of these things I can slowly “donate” all of his tye-dye shirts. (Just kidding Mr. Kummerow!)
Finally, it was time to line up. I scooted in near the 5-hour pacers, despite my “estimated” time being 4:30. My pace has changed quite a bit since I began training and registered, I heeded Coach Jenny’s advice of starting slow. Before I knew it we were off!
The miles began to tick one by one. Coach Jenny also gave me some other great advice: to take it mile by mile. “Eat the elephant one bite at a time.” Around mile 2 I had an awful pain in ankle. I felt like my bones were crushing…and if I’m being honest with myself and you, the pain never subsided.
I walked through every water stop for the first half, and ran every other inch of the 13 miles. I felt great (other than the ankle). I was getting angrier by the mile that my ankle hurt so terribly when the rest of me felt so great! But I was determined to finish this thing, no matter what it took.
I walked a little slower through the water stop after mile 13 but continued to push through. Thirteen through 20 is somewhat of a blur. I walked through every water stop, and a little after each one, but I felt strong right through 20! (Strong in a very altered sense of the word). I really think 15 through 20 was my most difficult. I just wanted to get to 20. My goal was to get to 20 and then I didn’t care how the last 6 miles were accomplished: running, walking, hobbling!
I caught a slight runner’s high at 20 and pushed right through, ran through a water stop and halted at 21 for a quick walk break. By mile 22 I was at it again and ran to the next water stop and then walked until the 23.
At 23 I made a game plan…run 1, walk 1, run 1. I knew that I would miss the 5 hour mark by a long shot, and I had already come to terms with it, I just wanted to finish. 23 through 24 scooted right by and ran until 24.5. I stopped for water walked half a mile, and then ushered all the will-power in my heart and finished the last 1.2 miles at a 10-minute pace, with a strong finish.
All of a sudden, I was across the finish line, and I burst into tears. I felt so proud and accomplished. My ankle hurt like a curse word I don’t want to type (but that did sneak out of my mouth a few times). It boggles my mind how I managed to run the full thing with such pain. But mind over body…and I believe anyone can achieve anything.
I forgot to tell you about fueling. At mile 6, 13, and 18 I took a Hammer Gel. I had a few cups of Cytomax (garorade-esqe drink) but only 2 or 3. And I drank 1 cup of water at each stop (about every mile) through the first half. After the first half I drank two cups of water at each water stop.
So that’s the recap. I’m done, I’m finished, I’m accomplished and proud. And I never want to do it again! Check that off the bucket list!
I’m sorry, did I mention my best friend Melisa ran the whole thing with me!? This is her 4th marathon and I could not have done it without her. She is a rockstar and I am so grateful for the support and motivation. I have told her how thankful I am, but I’m not sure she will ever really know!
Not only did she run with me today, but she has also been trying to take care of me all day! I love this girl!
(I love the bus too!) Right at the finish, drove us straight to our hotel!)
So after Melisa and I finished, we waited for our good friends Jennifer and Theresa to finish (Lindsay had already finished her half marathon with a PR-shaving 10 minutes off her time!
They finished strong and I was so proud of them! Of all of us!
We boarded the bus and on the way back. Between finishing and getting on the bus, I drank 2 waters, a mini Larabar, and an orange. On the bus I chugged more water and returning to the hotel I have had a coconut water (love it!) and a banana!
The five of us smiling back at the hotel (minutes before we took advantage of the hot tub!)
Now I am showered, and starving and ready to go to dinner!
Thank you so much for following me while I trained and for the unending support and encouragement that you bring me through this blog! It means so very much to me!
26.2 miles: done!