My plans for a no-stress race went out the window about 9:30 p.m. Friday when my sister called to say she was not running. She was legitimately sick, so I don’t blame her at all . . . even though I may take back her Christmas present.
I had a slight breakdown, decided to quit the race, sucked it up and began searching for songs to make a race playlist all in about 15 seconds time.
After my panic attack I’ll be honest, I had a moment where I thought “maybe this isn’t such a bad thing. Maybe this will be my chance to PR.”
Spoiler alert: Not even close!
I headed to bed about 10:30 p.m. and my super over-prepared husband set the alarm for 3 a.m. I threatened his life if he woke me up before 3:45 a.m.
I did not sleep, at all! It’s like I forgot how to fall asleep. Anyone ever experience that problem? Apparently at some point I did drift off but went the alarm went off at 3 a.m., I got up with it. We left the house about 4:20 and picked up a few friends who were riding with us.
The race started at 7 a.m. but packet pick up was 5 to 6:15 a.m. We arrived a little before 6 a.m. and spent the next hour
psyching ourselves up fighting the nerves.
There was still a vendor there at the “expo” so I bought a few Shot Blocks, which I have taken in the past and had good luck with, and a new headband/ear warmer. The weather was great for this race and I didn’t need them, but I can’t pass up a bargain.
The course in this race is a straight, flat stretch along the river, out and back. The marathon is an out and back twice. The race’s claim to fame is that it’s a great place to qualify for Boston because it is so flat. I think around 30 percent of runners qualified last year.
Last year, the start and finish were in the same spot but this year, they changed it up a bit and the start began at the school where the expo/packet pick up was held. It gave you a nice downhill to the river to start with.
Problem with this was, the start was not timed, something that they didn’t announce until about 30 seconds before the race started. Enter about 50 runners looking to qualify for Boston who start flipping out. Add to that, there was no real clear marking as to where the start line was and you have a whole lotta crazy.
The gun went off and everyone started immediately running.
The first mile was a straight down hill, which was nice but I was a little nervous about wiping out on some of the gravel that had made it onto the road so I didn’t take full advantage of perk. Also, the 5K started at the same time so there were a lot of runners and walkers to dodge.
The course leveled out eventually and the 5kers turned around toward the finish line.
The aid stations were great and well spaced at about every mile. I stopped at 2 miles for a very short walk and a drink of water.
At about 3 miles I noticed my Garmin was right on with the mile markers. It was loosing signal occasionally but seemed to be catching back up.
I felt really good and was keeping my pace around 10:30 and only taking short walks at aid stations.
I hit mile five at around 55 minutes and was feeling good about my PR chances. Not too long after that I saw my friends and husband who were coming back. From then, it seemed to take forever to get to the turn around which was close to seven miles. I hit the half-way point at about 1:10 and decided to make my goal to finish in 2:20.
I hit mile eight and felt great. The river view was beautiful.
I decided I could totally pick up my pace and finish the last five miles strong.
And, then I hit mile nine and realized I had made a mistake. I hit a wall that was made worse when I saw the mile markers and my Garmin were not lining up at all. I started struggling a bit, but was still only walking through aid stations. I hit mile 10 on my Garmin but was on down the road more than a quarter mile before I saw the mile marker.
By 12 miles, I felt defeated. I was still maintaining an ok time but I realized I was not going to PR and to be honest with you, threw in the towel a bit. My stomach was starting to cramp up and I was getting nauseous. It was the Bass Pro half-marathon all over again. Somewhere around 12.5 miles I decided I was no longer running, ever again. I am a Great sport, let me tell you.
I made myself run the last half-mile. My official finish time was 2:32:11. Today, I’m kicking myself because I think had I not been so discouraged the last mile I could have brought it in at under 2:30.
My Garmin measured 13.45 miles though, so that at least made me feel a little better.
Forgot to hit pause for a couple of minutes
More stomach pains followed the race and I couldn’t stomach food, water or standing for about 2 hours after the race. I blamed the jelly beans last time so I don’t know what it is now but I’m definitely going to try to figure it out before Vegas. Otherwise, I’m walking the 13 miles with a yard-long margarita in hand.
Sunday, instead of resting, I spent the day cooking and prepping for Thansgiving and in general, destroying the kitchen.
Hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving!