This was my very first marathon a year ago, so I was really excited about running it again. To make things even better I got to run with Amanda, from Too Tall Fritz again (we ran Chicago together).
We went to bed early Friday night, although neither of us slept very well, and woke up before 6 Saturday morning. Last year the temps were in the 30's, so I was very happy that Saturday was in the 50's.
We got to the race and found Mike, from Run Nerds Rock. It was nice to finally meet him!
Now about the race. My time last year was 5:31. My fastest marathon was 5:21. So I was hoping for anything under that. Was 5:15 too much to ask for? I didn't think so. This was a pretty flat course, with only a few small inclines.
I finished the first half in 2:34. I was so happy about that, because I was going slower than I knew I could, since that's what you're supposed to do. I might just get a PR!
Well, after mile 16 it all went down from there. I don't know what was wrong with me. I honestly have no clue. My body felt great. I wasn't hurting anywhere, no aches or pains, I felt good!
But as you can see, I walked a lot the second half.
My official finishing time was actually 5:40, I forgot to stop my Garmin.
Mile 20 was when I started feeling DONE. The sun was blazing and there was no shade, it was pretty hot.
Around that time someone came running up to me and asked if he could give me a compliment. Umm, yes please! I need something!! He said I had the longest, leanest legs he'd ever seen and how nice they were, and that I looked great. He said they gave him incentive to catch up to me. He wasn't being creepy, just being nice and encouraging me. It felt like I'd been given a shot of energy after hearing that!
The remaining 6.2 miles were hot and slow. It was very, very tough. I would never quit, but I was definitely thinking I'm never doing this again. (Although I have 3 more fulls already scheduled this year, AND my 100 miler) I was thinking I'm only doing half's from now on. Maybe 1 full a year. But no more than that. Ever!!
But then I started thinking how good this was for me. If I always do things that are easy, I'll never know how tough I am. I NEED to do things that challenge me and push me to my limits. This is what I live for, this is what I love!
Isn't it crazy the things we think about and tell ourselves at that point of desperation?
Finally I saw the finish line ahead, and I gave it my all. I saw my friend Andrew on the sidelines, cheering me on. Then I saw Amanda and Julie. And it was all worth it. That feeling of finishing. When you have no more to give, yet you keep on going. It's all worth it.
And you know what? I'll do it all again. I'll do over three times that many miles in 2 weeks. And I will love (with a little bit of hate) every single minute.
After the race I stayed the night with some friends in Indy. They cooked a delicious dinner for me, and then we went here. They know me well!
We ended the night with wine and the hot tub. I cannot tell you how good it felt on these sore legs!
Even though I am incredibly disappointed with my time, it was still an excellent race. One I will definitely do every year. All I can do is keep trying. I am determined to get faster! After my 100, I am going to start working on my speed. I'm going to keep trying for a sub 30 5k, which I wasn't able to achieve last year, but I'm GOING to do it this year. My next full is the Air Force marathon in September, I WILL get that 5:15 then.