Going into this race, I really wasn't sure how I was going to do. Because I was sick so often during my training, I let go of any sort of time goal and just decided to run it for fun. Originally, my sister was going to run the full marathon too, but she got some crazy foot injuries and decided against it. Her goal was to just run as far as she could and enjoy the race. I decided that my new goal was to run with my husband and support him through his first marathon. It was kind of strange because I wasn't nervous at all, but my husband was. I don't think I've ever gone into a race not being nervous, and it was actually really nice not to have that nervousness.
Because this wasn't a typical race report for me, I thought I'd just list some of the pros and cons of the race as my race report!
* An awesome race shirt! I LOVE the colors, the design, and the fit. Yay!
* The way the event was organized was awesome! The shuttle service to the start was great, there were hundreds of port-a-potties in different locations, and gear check was a cinch. It was put together so much better than the Denver RNR marathon.
* My husband and I met up with my sister at the start and we were able to run together for the first few miles. It was fun to all be together, even if it was for just a short while.
* My mom, dad, and brother-n-law met us at different points throughout the race. It was awesome to have them cheering for us! I don't care what anyone says, but for me, having friends/family on the sidelines cheering definitely gives me a boost during a race. Here is a picture my mom took of us. I love it! :)
|My husband, me, and my dad! :)|
* There were packs of junior high (high school??) cheerleaders throughout the marathon that were awesome as well! They all had different costume themes and you could hear them cheering before you ever saw them! I made a point to high five as many of them as I could. I thought it was awesome that they chose to spend half of their day cheering their hearts out for people they don't even know, and giving them high-fives was my way of letting them know I appreciated them!
* The first part of the race went by soooo fast. We hit the 13.1 mile marker and high-fived each other! My husband was doing awesome and I was so proud of him.
* There were these 2 big guys that I saw throughout the race on the sidelines. They had a big sign that said, "Go (your name)" and for some reason I just thought it was hilarious. I never heard them cheer, and their faces were blank most of the time, but they showed up in random places throughout the course and they always made me smile when I saw them. So, thank you random guys with the sign! :)
* I nailed my nutrition and hydration and never experienced any stomach issues like my last marathon. I was pretty terrified of dry heaving and throwing up again, but it never happened! Woohoo!!
* Around the 24 mile mark, I crossed over a bridge that went over Tempe Town Lake. I decided to stop and look out over the lake to where my Ironman Arizona swim start will be in November. It was amazing! I got a little dose of butterflies looking out over that water, imagining myself swimming 2.4 miles, and I was thankful for that moment.
* I was hurting pretty bad at this point in the race (see the cons), but after I crossed the bridge, I saw my mom, dad, brother-n-law, and sister! It was awesome to see them again! I told my dad that I would be walking the 2.5 miles to the finish and he and my sister decided to walk them with me. It was actually pretty fun (if you take the pain part out of it) walking that last part with them. I think it would have been torture for me if I would have had to do that by myself, and I may have had my first DNF, but with them by my side, we finished the race together.
* My sister was able to run 19 miles before having to stop! Woohoo!! I know you don't know about her injuries, but that is awesome for her, and I was so proud of her!! She may not have finished the whole 26.2 miles, but 19 miles is still amazing!! Yay for her!!!
* When we reached the finisher's shoot, my dad went off to the side because he couldn't come down the shoot with us. I told my sister that I wanted to try and run it in, so I fought through the pain and we slowly made our way to the finish. When we got close to the finish, I grabbed my sister's hand and we crossed the finish line together! It was awesome!!
* My husband finished his first marathon in 4:44!! Woohoo! It wasn't exactly the time he wanted, but he did awesome for his first marathon and I am sooo proud of him!
* Check out the medal! I love it!
* We got to run in the SUN! The weather in CO has been cold, so it was awesome to run in 70 degree weather with the sun shining down on us.
* I wasn't able to meet up with the other bloggers on Friday night. Boo!!
* The entire course was on hot, hard asphalt. I don't know about all of you, but I rarely train on asphalt. Running on that the entire 26.2 miles was not the greatest!
* Around the 15 mile mark, my husband's pace started to slow. He made it clear that he didn't want to "hold me back," and he wanted me to keep going, but I wasn't going to leave him.
* Around the 18 mile mark, my right knee started REALLY hurting. I have never had any problems with my right knee, but I have had ITB issues with my left knee so I know what it feels like. I ran through it, but it only got worse. Before long, I could feel a burning pain from my ankle all the way up to my hip. My ITB was NOT happy with me.
* At the 22 mile mark, I told my husband I had to walk. I told him to keep going and finish strong! We gave each other a high-five, then separated for the first time in the race. It sucked to see him run ahead, but I needed to walk, and I didn't want him to stop for me. The pain was so intense that it literally brought tears to my eyes. I would walk/limp for a couple of minutes, then try to run again. The first step of running was always the worst, but I pushed through the pain. I started doing this pattern of walking then attempting to run for the next 2 miles. It HURT so bad!
Although this marathon turned out completely different than I thought, and I was in pain the last part of the course, I can honestly say that I had a blast doing it. I had fun out there and was smiling pretty much throughout the entire race. The music, the cheerleaders, my husband, and my family all made it an awesome experience.
I think I'm pretty much done with marathons for now. I can honestly say that I have no desire to do another one...not for awhile anyways. In fact, the next one I do will be during Ironman Arizona.
Although I'm going to start swimming again, I am really looking forward to not having any type of training going on. I start my official training for IMAZ in April, and until then, I'm going to take it easy. I think I deserve some time off! :)