For the 1st time ever!!
You know...I never really thought from the moment I made my first attempt at running (barely 1 minute straight) just 14 months ago, that I would end this year with a FULL marathon (Thunder Road)....I never dreamed it would happen. But it did!!
My greatest accomplishment to date!!
Leading up to the week of the marathon I was featured in our local newspaper, The Charlotte Observer (blog excerpt here)
as one of the first time marathoners in this big race (over 10,000 participated in some capacity 5K, Half, or Full). What a great headliner and fantastic incentive to not chicken out right before the race! LOL It really built up the excitement of my 1st time and I felt like a kid waiting on Xmas!!
Well the big day came and our race began at 7:45AM. I am really not the type (as my regular blog readers already know) to give out mile marker splits especially for a race. But I will give you some highlights that I recall:
Mile 0: Digested a stage 1 PowerBar and took 4 Advils and 4 Pepto-bismols (be gone runner's trot!).
Mile 3ish: Getting in the groove now and making sure not to get too froggy with my pace
Mile 6ish: Squatted behind a bush somewhere for the 1st pee break. Took a PowerBar Gel #1
Mile 9ish: Saw race road kill!! (a guy cramped up in the middle of the street in severe pain..we had to look away)
Mile 12ish: Feeling good! Took PowerBar Gel #2 (not sure at what mile this pic was taken but I was smiling...good sign)
(CWX tights lover for life!)
Mile 14ish: Took 4 more advils and dashed to a PortaJohn
Mile 16ish: Thinking "I got 10 more miles...really??" Began repeating & meditating on Philippians 4:13
Mile 18ish: Digging deep and growing really weary this is when I started to feverishly repeat out loud now Philippians 4:13 - the only thing that would come to my mind to stay focused!!
Mile 20ish: Weary, took PowerBar Gel #3...my honey met up with me to run the last 6 miles!! YAY!!
Mile 20.1: Got lazy since BF showed up (my personal race angel) and started walking..oh boy. We both were repeating Philippians 4:13 together.
Mile 23ish: Stopped for the block party in NoDa!! Hell I deserved a break! They had this up there:
(How freakin funny!)
In this neighborhood they also had a table full of oranges and bananas along with race flags. I devoured the oranges as I was so over my gels at that point (even though I downed my last PowerGel #4 for good measure to finish off the race).
Mile 24-25ish: A lot of dayum walking
Mile 25.2ish: I can't freakin' believe I gotta pee!!!! Last portajohn stop...finger gestures occur and stares that could kill :-/
Mile 26.1ish: Panic that I won't make it under 5 hours and beast it out
Sense of being victorious!! Topped off with some nice heavy hardware :)
Along with the feeling of my legs being insanely sore & stiff = please cut them off...n.o.w.! (even after all of that advil too!)
Other Notes: I ran this race with my training group. I can't not say this enough..group support is SO very important and I could not have done it without them....especially the first 20 miles!
Every 2 miles there were waterstops and so I did speedwalk breaks while drinking. I made sure to hydrate at every stop!
And I ate these PowerBar snacks along the course of the race to stay fueledI never ate the Clif blocks the race offered during the higher miles as I never tested them during my training, and was happy I brought plenty of my personal snacks for the marathon.
I never truly "hit a wall" per say (that was during my 20 miler training run - both mental & phyiscal), but the training definitely prepared me!!
Because I ran a half marathon a month prior (my 1st one) I got this 39.3 commemorative medal:
(13.1 +26.2 Yaaaay Baby!)
The Thunder Road Marathon is known to be a hilly and challenging course (flat is for sissies!), along with the fact it is one of the last races of the year that is a Boston qualifier (not in my cards) so I must say I was proud to squeak out 4:59:35 for my very 1st marathon!
I AM a Marathoner!!!
I can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens me ~ Philippians 4:13