26.2 Complete! – San Diego, CA

February 06, 2008

San Diego, CA

26.2 complete!

A year and a half ago I started this blog as a journal to capture a summer of running…  First blog captured my first race…   I thought I was darn near death at mile 2.  I keep telling people I couldn’t put 2 miles together before a year or two ago!  I went back and read the blog a few days ago, man have I come a ways… 

2-weeks ago I ran 26.2!  Yup, my first marathon.  Why the hell would I be crazy enough to do a full marathon you might ask?  Well, let me tell you I was questioning the same thing at about mile 24.  Simple answer, I had it on the list.  You know, that master list of things to do while I’m alive?!?  (apparently now that it’s trendy we’re all calling this a ‘bucket list’)

So here’s the story:

Back in September after spending almost every weekend outside my new home in San Diego – and after a lonely Friday night in SD I decided I needed to go out and make friends.  Joining a social running group to train for a marathon just fit.  So glad I did, I’ve met awesome friends in the process….  So 18-weeks and over 500 miles of training later… 

The Carlsbad Marathon…  simple goal of finishing.  (okay, so I’m lying the competitive bone in me had it in my head to run under 4:00:00)

Mile 2:  On pace for 4:00:00

Mile 5:  Wow, I’m ahead of that pace group

Mile 7:  1/2 marathon and full marathon were on the same course until it split.  90% of the people continued along the half marathon course – a bit of an eerie feeling knowing you’ve still got 20 miles to go and not too many people are coming with you!

Mile 7-12:  Straight shot up a 4% grade hill.  I’m now running with the 3:50 pace group (8:48 min miles)

Mile 12-14:  Down the hill and my legs are beginning to feel it

Mile 14-16:  Eek.

Mile 16-18:  The rolling hills keep coming and I’m shutting my eyes on the way up attempting to trick myself into believing I’m not running UP hill 🙂  doesn’t work.

Mile 18:  Hill.  Sucks.  People start dropping out of the race – including one of the pace group leaders (as in the guy that’s hired to LEAD and MOTIVATE the group)

Mile 18/19:  More hills.

Mile 20:  I find out later I’m running an 8:40 min pace at this point

Mile 21:  I’ve heard this is when your body starts shutting down.  I’m now focusing on mile to mile.

Mile 22:  Mentally challenging.  My body is definitely shutting down.   I’m now focusing on step by step. I can’t even think about water, fuel, anything.

Mile 23:  Lots of people dropping out.  I’m going up another freaking hill.  one foot infront of the other is all I can think – I’m no longer with my pace group and don’t even care.

Mile 24:  My only thought “I am never doing another freakin’ marathon again. and if i’m never doing another marathon I’m freakin’ finishing under 4:00:00”

Mile 25:  I think I’m going to cry.  No thoughts are in my head.

Mile 25-26:  Physically I’ve never been in so much pain or felt like my whole body was shutting down.  You can’t explain the feeling –  I know how / why people can’t make it through the last mile.  I can’t walk because it hurts more than running.  It’s downhill but it hurts.

Last few steps:  I see a Great Dane and then a few friends which pushes me through to the end.  If it was even 1/2 mile more I don’t think I could have made it.

I can’t move.  My whole body – muscles, joints ache and are on file.  I feel like my whole body has arthritis.

A few hours later:  🙂  I finished a freaking marathon 🙂  I’m on V’s couch eating cupcakes (thanks, Jen 🙂  and drinking Mimosas.  I can’t move.  I can’t walk.  But I can be just a little proud of myself for finishing my first marathon.  Secondarily, running it in 3:54:00.  That’s right – maybe this won’t be my last marathon after all.

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