So here it is. My recap of my first marathon. WAYYYY late. But as I get ready to throw down for my next big race – The Marine Corps Historic Half – it’s nice to reflect.
Woke up early and ate half a bagel thin – as my usual long run routine… I’ve learned eating makes my stomach incredibly upset, so I generally avoid food before my run. It was so cold, I didn’t wear too many layers because I knew I would get hot running and I didn’t get the whole “wear cheap layers and just throw them off then they’ll get picked up and donated to charity” memo before hand. (HINDSIGHT now I know). I felt really great the first half of the marathon, I took it very easy to start and I killed the hill at mile 6 and 7, didn’t stop running and just tried to enjoy the experience. At mile 10 in Georgetown I saw my parents!!! I got to throw off my ear warmer and gloves and long sleeve top to them and that made me feel so much better. Around mile 12 I got caught in the terrible trap of having to pee and that took all of 25 minutes. UGH. I still had some great energy by the halfway point but that had faded by mile 16. I finally saw my amazing fan club (Mom, Dad, Allen -with a sign he made me, Catherine, and Aunt Sue) but I was almost crying and so ready to give up. They all cheered me on and I was still making decent time. When I saw them at mile 19 I was in much better spirits and back to kicking butt. Then I BEAT THE BRIDGE! I had passed the gauntlet with plenty of time to spare and I was so excited, but around mile 21.5 that was killed. My right foot made a weird popping feeling, I stopped for a minute, but after walking a few yards it felt normal so I went back to running, that was short lived and my struggle to the finish began.
Sidenote: I dislocate the middle of my foot all the time, happens a lot in my sleep or when I have my foot in certain positions for a long time, which is why I wasn’t as concerned as maybe I should have been.
I walked /jogged the rest of the race. It was miserable. I had worked so hard to beat 5:00 or at the very latest 5:30…. now that was totally dashed. I tried to remember my cousin Chris’ advice, he told me just to enjoy it and not worry about a time. So all that mattered was finishing. I finished in 5:57. I probably didn’t help my foot by sprinting the last .2 miles but I wanted to go out strong. I experienced every emotion possible during that race, it was the most mentally, physically, and emotionally draining thing to get through – it also tested my very limited concentration. And despite limping and crutching around on a micro-fractured foot for the 2 weeks after the race, I can’t wait to do it again. This time I will make sure my foot is wrapped and while I might focus a little more on time, at least I really know what I’m in for now. I must say that finishing that marathon rivals performing on bass for an adrenaline rush for me…good thing the two things coexist peaceably!!
Mileage – 2.5 miles
QOD – Running long and hard is an ideal antidepressant, since it’s hard to run and feel sorry for yourself at the same time. Also, there are those hours of clear headedness that follow a long run.