Well, I made it. That is was the goal people. It's been two years since i ran a full marathon and the last time I did one,(Mesa Falls ironically) I was hit with ITBband so severely I found myself walking almost all of the last 7 miles. It is a very miserable memory.
BUT...this time I had no injuries and was able to run the entire time. I was cheering the whole time about that part. This is a journal for me to remember so forewarning it is detailed..hehe But here is the recap
Having to be in Ashton by 4:45 am to pick-up race packets, eat, potty and catch the bus by 5:15 made for a very early wake-up call...3am to be exact though Dave and I slept through the alarm until 3:45am. VERY lucky we even got up. Here is a picture from me in the car after picking up my number.I was tired but excited. There were SO many people there, many more than I remember from 2007 and so many from out of state. Pretty cool for a little town like Asthton, ID.
I sat by a guy from NY on the bus and was smiling the whole ride up as I overheard a group from Austin, TX talking about all of there racing experiences. I related so well to most of it. That is one of my favorite parts of racing I've decided-being around so many other people with the running disease.:) I can't tell you how often I've made the comment that runners are just such great people. I think it has something to do with it being a mental sport, so refining to the mind. idk, but Dave agreed with me this time after meeting and chatting it up with various finishers all morning.
The course was beautiful and weather perfect starting in the 40's and ending in the 80's. I had planned to conserve myself and run a steady 7:30 pace the first 15 miles and see how I felt the last 11. The first 4 went smooth, effortless really. However, not even into mile 6 the worst case of intestinal havoc hit me and I ended up in every porta potty and even the forest for the next 15 miles. It was a rediculous thing to watch I'm guessing because the group I was pacing with would laugh as I would dart of into the trees, then catch back up, only to be left behind again. SO FRUSTRATING!! The crazy part about it was I was feeling so good running wise. I was keeping a great 7:20 mile between stops but with 10 or so stops that pace starts dwindling fast. And I was stressed, admittedly. There was a one girl ahead of me and in my sights until after about mile 8 where I had just stopped too much to keep her in my view.
It's ok, I told myself, I came out to run this for training. I just want to finish respectably. But as luck would have it, as I was finishing my last mile on the trails, mile 16, there she was, I'd caught back up to that girl, and as AC/DC came on my ipod I thought...
now or never. Girl, you're going down right here.
Mile 16 is mine.
And so I passed her on the final steps before the pavement. Guess she was Thunderstruck..hehe Passing someone for the lead feels about as good as being passed for the lead feels terrible. I knew I broke her spirit as we approached the dreaded 3.5 mile climb up towards Asthton. But I couldn't have been happier. I was in the lead now.
The hills were challenging. I past a walker, a guy puking on the side, and I myself, had to slow up significantly to perserve my energy for that final 10k, but the Bone hill training had been good for me these last couple months and that climb didn't kill me quite like the Teton Dam hill did.
The last 6 miles proved to be everything everyone told me. HARD AS HELL. It was hot, I was dehyrated from TOO many potty stops and my mind was starting to lose interest in the sport I love so much. In fact, at the 25 mile water station I sat down and aloud stated to the nice couple helping me with gatorade, "Why did I want to do this? Why? Why am I doing this?" But with their encouragement and a little over a mile to go I ran, even with Dave that last 400 meters to come in at 3hours and 24 minutes. I even stayed ahead of the other girl and captured 1st. Here I am running into the gate.
Lynette, my running buddy, put it best when telling me she always feels like she's been run over by a train after a marathon. AMEN. I've never wanted to sit so much in all my life. My lungs and heart could've gone for another 26 but my body was SO fatiqued. I felt slightly tramatized to be honest. I felt nauseous, shaky, and completely busted but happy that I finished this time running the entire 26. This is me sitting on the grass afterwards because frankly, I had no energy in my legs to stand.
As we left I told Dave how much I already dreaded running that distance again in 6 weeks at St. George. Though today, only one day later, I'm already excited for the challenge to do it all over again. With a taper, and hopefully a resolution to the potty issue, I hope to be able to race my little heart out and come in at my goal time of 3:10:00 or less to make the last race of the season a VERY memorable one.