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Thursday, May 5, 2011

Guilty as charged . . .

Right, I know.  I stopped posting for a long time.

In my defense, I did teach a new course this semester (anyone interested in the genetics of the little things that live on your eyelashes?) and run a marathon.

That's me, yes # 1106, which may not impress real runners but I was pleased as punch.  For anyone who didn't know, I started seriously running last year, and with the help of running and Weight Watchers, took off 35 pounds.  I couldn't run a 1/4 mile when I started, but kept it up.  I ran a half marathon last year.  While I was standing at the starting line, I took a look at all the people with the blue numbers (the marathoners) and thought, why not me?

No reason, it turns out.  A ton of training was done, with smelly laundry and nasty shoes and a very runny nose on icy Maine roads.  Many warm baths.  Many anxious nights thinking about the impending event.

We had a perfect day last weekend; 55 degrees F and sunny.  A nice cool breeze (NOT a roaring wind like on the 2 other races I did this year).  We lined up at the start and I have to admit, I was almost in tears with excitement and little fear.  What if I couldn't do it?  My last long race (20 miles) I'd run with a stomach bug and could barely finish.  I wanted that finisher's medal!  The gun sounded and we were off.  Well, the real racers at the front were off.  People in my bin had to wait more than 2 minutes to cross the starting line (they factor that into your time).  But we finally surged forward and left the music and excitement behind.

Everything was GREAT, pre-mile 23.  Great volunteers, terrific fans cheering us on, and lovely people to run with and have a chat.  I was in love with running, in love with Providence, in love with everyone I saw.  Huge smiles in all the event pictures (yes I'll buy some but can't post them).  Then I got a little tired at mile 20 and slowed down a little -- no problem, still on a 5 hour pace.

Then, Mile 23.  There was no matter to put mind over.  No grindstone to put the nose to.  I had hit The Wall.  I'd heard about this, and I can tell you I never want to be there again.  I literally had trouble with my vision and was dizzy.  I stopped at an aid station where a very nice man got me a ton of gatoraide and had me sit down for a minute.  Or ten.  I'm sure he was thinking "this one's ready for the sag wagon."  Then, I felt fine.  I thought I could walk, and I was right.  Walked to mile 24.5, then ran.  And ran.  And passed people.  Nearing the finish I could hear the music and crowds and I picked it up and made sure to skip across the finish line.   Time:  5 hours, 33 minutes, 58 seconds. 

Today is the first day I feel good afterwards -- no leg weakness or shoulder soreness -- and I'm planning on a short run.  Nothing too much.

I really, actually do have a weaving post that's about ready, on finishing.  Now that I've finished that race, it's appropriate!

1 comment:

  1. Hi there! I am so impressed about your run. You are amazing! I don't have your email address so this was the only way I could get back to you. Did you like my pictures of Key Largo?? My email is so get in touch. Are you going to Webs next weekend?