Monday, March 19, 2012

I am a Marathon Runner!!

The day has come and the training has been done, and I can now call myself a Marathon Runner!! On Sunday March 18th I ran in the Georgia Marathon and some how picked the hillliest marathon to be a first one! Along with be hilly it was the warmest marathon I may (hopefully) ever run. I usually like warm weather to run in, but this was almost to warm for me! Going into I knew I had to hydrate and so it started all week, but on Saturday it was water overload. I ran this race with Stefanie, a friend a met here in Helena as part of the Helena Endurance Running Group (HERG's) that was formed last July. She has helped me and pushed me to be able to say that I want to run a marathon, rather then I never want to run a marathon.
Stefanie & Me early before take off
We drove into Atlanta on Saturday afternoon, and started by going to the expo.
Georgia Expo
It was a huge expo, and a bit crowded! But it was fun seeing so many fun things. We entered a few race drawing, but no emails yet, so I guess no free race entry. But did come away with some Yurbuds , which I do look forward to using!

Race Day Gear
Onto the rest of the night, after dinner we went back to the room to try and sleep. We each have our own routines, she is a morning person me more of a night person. So I took my shower and laid out my clothes for the morning. Stefanie likes to get up, have coffee and prep in the am, me I sleep until I have to get up! Except this time, I got up earlier then normal..nerves?! We headed out to our Corral at about 6:40, just in time for the 7am start time. 
In the corral, is when I really realized....holy shit I am about to run 26.2 miles!! What was I thinking!?!?! The music was playing and it was good pumped up music, which helped calm the nerves and pump me up some! I held back the emotions to cry, figured it would not be good to have a break down before the race!! 
So 7am came and the corrals ahead started moving and so did we! then under the start line and we were off! 

So little thing I was told before this race, it was my first marathon....Don't worry about your time, its your first so of course it will be a PR and you will have others to do! Well, how can you not want to have a goal time! you have trained for months!!! So I did have a goal time it was 4:30.

Temps for the race
Back to the race....we started out by weaving and getting into open space. And I was feeling great!! (mind you I have been struggling with my IT Band for the last 4-5 weeks) so I was thrilled that there was no pain, and no discomfort! We were at a great pace, right on target for that time I was not supposed to have. We were being smart walk/jog through water stops and drinking water and gatorade.  So smart to be drinking that at mile 14 i had to go! but happy I had to because it meant I was not getting dehyradted! Because by this time it was in the 70's! Still feeling great, even with the blisters starting, but I ignored them! And the hills really were not that bad (yet)! But by mile 15-16 I noticed starting to get really tight, my right knee didn't like bending any more, but i was determined to keep going and push through. Then the hill of 18-19 appeared and my knee really started saying curse words to me, and it started to crumble. I had to start walking up the hill, and then it was almost impossible to run down the hill. I was starting to have a little melt down, words were flying out of my mouth and the tears almost started flowing. I was so pissed that this was happening! All this training and this stupid IT band is going to show its evil head, when I thought it had disappeared! But obviously it was not all the way healed! But Stefanie just kept me going! "Lets see how far we can go, lets get to the next water stop" With out her I could have easily curled up on the side of road! I am so thankful she was there!! So she kept me going, we were walking, jogging, & running the last 7 miles! But I made it. I think we did eventually run the last 2 miles, and when the signs for 3/4 mile to go, then 1/2 mile to go, and 1/4 mile to emotions starting going out of control. I am really going to do this! 
All worth it!!
And then the finish line!!! 

I had made it!! Something that I never said would do!! I DID IT!!
Pain and all! 

More to come on this event in later posts!

1 comment:

  1. Great recap Jenn! Glad you stayed with it. You will always be a marathoner from now on. The lessons you learned today will get you to those goal times in the future. No marathon will ever be easy but from this point forward, you know you can do it. Thr fact has been huge for me. I didn't get to the times I am at now without drawing on experiences from each and every marathon I've done.

    Glad to meet you and looking forward to doing the Dixie 200 with you!