I still can’t believe that I ran as far as I did. That is the exciting part of marathon training, pushing yourself further than you ever thought possible. Watching my food for the entire week and making sure I was drinking a ton of water really helped. I was also thrilled that I would have my best friend to run with for the first 10 or so miles which would help me take my mind off the amount of miles I had to run. I was really looking forward to going to Burke Gilman trail and taking in the wonderful sites, not to mention that FLAT trail. I realized that after 6 months of training I am REALLY tired of running around my neighborhood and new sites and views are always a breath of fresh air when you are running, especially when you are running for hours. I packed up the night before so I wouldn’t have to rush in the morning since I had to be out of the house by 8:30 and with kids, that can be tricky. It’s amazing how much stuff you can have for a run. I had 3 bags with clothes, food and all my gadgets. I always like to change after my long runs pretty quickly afterwards…sitting in sweaty clothes for hours after a long run is dangerous.
I was so happy when I woke up and saw SUN because all we have seen lately is RAIN. We got out of the house on time, picked up my friend and headed down to Grandma’s house to drop the kids off. Got to U Village pretty much on time and we headed out for the trail. I took a shot block to get started. It was so fun to run with Andrea and to show her the trail. We often go to U Village for shopping and had never knows about this great trail. She loved it and I loved running together for my last long, training run. The sites were great and we were running at a very easy pace. She hasn’t run for a couple weeks so I was hoping she would be ok. We got to the turnaround point and I started running ahead a little bit and decided to take a GU. I got back to the car at about 11.5 miles and switched out my water bottles and had a few bites of food which ended up really helping before the next half. I saw Andrea as I was heading out and she hugged me and said she would be praying for me, which is what I was going to need.
I was feeling good and knew I needed to go 6.50 miles out and then come back. I kept on running and was taking it slow. After what seemed like forever I was able to turn around at 18.50 miles and head back. Heading back mentally is always nice! I knew once I started hitting some location markers it would go faster and faster. I kept putting myself in mental check as some negative thoughts would creep in which is no good when you still have miles to run. I was having some stomach issues, but I think I will bring that up in another post this week because I need your advice. I was looking forward to the last two miles so I could call Andrea and she could have chocolate milk waiting for me. Just knowing I had someone at the end made it so nice. I started seeing my markers that meant I was getting close which was great. What’s strange is the last few miles always seem to take the longest but this time it didn’t. I was still feeling good, tired, but better than I thought I would feel. The last 2 miles I got some kind of pain in my stomach which stopped me a few times, it was worse than a stitch or side ache, still not sure what it was. A guy ran by me as told me I was doing a good job which pushed me to pick it up and it also put a smile on my face. I have to say that when strangers encourage you on a run…it is one of the BEST things. I pushed through and I was coming to the end I thought I saw Andrea but she was in different clothes so I didn’t think it was her until I got closer and then I started to get emotional. I finished and we hugged and we were both crying. It’s so exciting when someone is on this journey with you; maybe not the physical journey but they are a part of the process in a way. We went back to the car and I ate, drank, changed and stretched my legs. As I was texting someone that I went 25 miles I realized as I typed it out…that is FAR. It’s weird when you see it written out. The whole run took me longer than I thought, but I figured race day will be a different day and run and really, time isn't everything.
Andrea asked me if my marathon will be less exciting because I almost ran that. Others commented that I should have gone ne more miles to make it a marathon. The truth is I want my first 26.2 miles to be at my first marathon on June 26, 2010. No matter what happens on June 26th…it will be exciting. The last 6 months leading up to it has been life changing. I know that my first marathon is going to be great because I made it to the starting line…of a MARATHON…that is a HUGE deal and something I never dreamed would actually happen.
June 3, 2010