Got to hear Dick Beardsley speak at the expo. He is such a dynamic speaker. I loved listening to him. He shared the following four things he does each day to make life a little better.
wake with a smile
speak with enthusiasm
have joy in your heart
and faith in your soul
So brilliant. We had him sign our bibs and snap a quick picture.
The morning of the race we woke up bright and early - 3:47 to be exact.
We loaded on a bus at about 5am and headed up to the starting line. It was frigid up there. I mean, so so cold. I couldn't feel my fingers or toes. We grabbed mylar blankets from the first aid table and I wrapped it around my head and upper body because I was losing all my body heat even thought I was wearing tons of layers. It was windy, and you know it's bad when you'd rather be in a porta potty than outside. We stripped down our layers and the gun went off. Jeff took off and I settled into my pace.
The first six miles went by so quickly. I train alone so I'm not used to running around so many people, it was fun and distracting. At about mile seven I saw Jeff's parents and brother, then headed up Veyo hill, which wasn't terrible in my opinion. I did a little walking to make sure I had something left in my legs for the last seven miles of the race.
I stopped to use porta potty at miles 11, 13, 15, and 19. Majorly slowed me down. I was having some stomach cramping and was drinking too much water (when will I ever learn?!).
At mile 15 we saw Mom and Norm. I was mentally falling apart at this point (but put on a big smile and thumbs up because I was still having fun) because I kept stopping to pee and it was messing with me mentally. Mom gave me a pep talk and it helped.
At mile 19 I hit the wall. I walked a bit and just felt like I was shuffling my feet when I tried to run. I couldn't wrap my head around 7 more miles. It seemed so far.
At mile 20 I remembered that I had an excedrine left in my pack and that was my lifesaver. I popped that pill and it carried me through the next six miles.
Miles 22 to the finish had tons of spectators and I really used them to boost my energy. I gave high fives to all the kids who had their hands out. I felt like I picked up my pace and managed to pass a lot of people in the last two miles.
When I saw the finish line about a quarter mile away I just started to cry. I was so happy to be accomplishing another marathon after a difficult year of training and injury. As soon as I finished I saw Jeff and I hugged him and cried a little more. I'm so lucky to have such an amazing support system when it comes to my running.
My official time was 4:48:01. Three minutes slower than my goal, but I did manage to accomplish my resolution that I made in January to finish a marathon in under 4:50. I know I could have done better had I not stopped so many times. But, I'm new to this sport and still figuring it all out. There's always another race and another chance to get a PR.