First off I want to thank each and every one of you for the outpouring of love and support I received throughout my 13.1 training journey.
Yesterday was the first day I was able to go without around the clock doses of Advil and walking around hunched over and clenching my hip and quads...pretty cute huh?
I first want to give you another reader's insight to long distance running. The funny gal over at The Lady Okie explains 10 reasons why running a marathon is like having a baby. You MUST read her post...definitely spot on to the things I felt this Sunday.
At the beginning of this running journey the farthest I had ever continuously run was maaaaaaybe 3 miles, which is a stretch. Within 20 weeks I had slowly reached a continuous 10 mile run. I enjoyed training because each day I was able to push myself farther than I had EVER run before. It was a great feeling.
Want an even better feeling? Running across the finish line after 13.1 intense miles!
Sunday morning we woke up at 5:00 to 43 degree weather and a large pit of butterflies in my stomach. I was thankful to have family in town this weekend to help cheer me on. My Aunt acytially completed her very first 5K this weekend! So awesome!
Once we got to Saratoga I joined the other 1,500 runners at the starting line.
- Miles 1-4 were a breeze (minus a couple of up hill climbs) through Skidmore College and the mansions surrounding the college. We then passed back through the starting line where the crowds were still gathered which seemed to give everyone a pep in their step around mile 4.
- Miles 5-9 were through Saratoga Spa State Park and the Saratoga Performing Arts Center. Mile 8 was where I hit a mental brick wall. At this point, my hip was starting to burn and my right knee had already been on fire for the past 4 miles, for the first time ever may I add...irritating.I was cursing myself for attempting such thing and there was NO WAY I would be able to make it 5 more miles.
- Miles 10-11 eased up a little bit. I began to take multiple walking breaks at the water stations. I'm telling you, grape gatorade never tasted so delicious! This was the part where we ran around the horse stables of the race track which was really neat to see. The volunteers were great and helped to keep us motivated.
- Mile 12 I was determined to run the entire way. It was more like a waddle. I cannot explain to you the joy I felt when I turned the corner and saw the time clock. I had made it...somehow, someway I made it and did it for Wheels. He was the true reason I was able to cross that finish line.
Overall my goal was to complete the race in under 3 hours, even if it meant crawling across the finish line. Although I wasn't one of the fastest I am sill incredibly proud of my time, and the fact that I even finished. 2:34 was my final time and I'll have to admit, I'm still in awe and wonder how the heck I did it!
Although I don't think I will be attempting another in the near future, I can't wait to get back into more races. It's such an exciting atmosphere...and quite addicting I might add.
Again, thank you for your support and love during this entire process. Can't wait to start the next running adventure.