Please note this was written on our late flight back last night and there are probably more grammatical errors than normal;)
Okay, let’s get started. I want to be as real as possible because I’m sure this is something a lot of us go through. I felt a million different things yesterday! I was sad in the first mile when I was feeling dizzy but tried to stay as positive as possible and told myself it would change… I was sad when I finished far from my goal… But then I was incredibly grateful for the experience I had the last few months and the growth that occurred… And then I was so happy to see so many people there I love a whole lot… And then I was embarrassed that I said I was going to accomplish this huge goal, people have done so much to get me there and I didn’t have an answer for why I didn’t do it… But then I was really proud that I’m not afraid of big goals, working my buns off and not giving up… And then I wondered what I could have done differently… Followed by clapping for myself for not getting on the bus going by at mile 7 like I wanted… And then 2 seconds later I remember I dreamed for YEARS to see a 2 at the start of my time and I did that yesterday while feeling my absolute worst and feeling really thankful for that.
Long story short with that, my feelings were everywhere yesterday and conflicting feelings are normal too ie—> WOW, I just dreamed up this goal not that long ago and look how far I’ve come vs. I just really thought we were going to get it and I want to cry on the couch for a few hours. I just want you to know that we all experience ALL OF THE FEELINGS. Yes, there are WAY worse things going on in the world today but when we work so hard for something and don’t hit it… we are humans and feelings are real.
Here’s how things went:
I fell asleep at 9 and woke up for good at 2:30 but I was actually really happy with the solid 5.5 hour chunk that I got because that is more than I usually get the night before the marathon. I was in a super good mood, everything was going smoothly, we were all laughing, excited and left the house at 6. I ate two bagels with jam at around 4:45 (the norm for me before a marathon), my normal UCAN on the way to the race and a gel right before I started. I was well hydrated and fueled so I know that wasn’t the problem!
We stayed at a friend’s house right near the starting line of the race so it could not have been more convenient. There was no rain predicted anymore and the cloud cover looked amazing. Emilee and I did a .5 mile warm-up after our husbands dropped us off with some quick strides and then we got into the coral.
In the corral, you should have heard how cocky I was being in my head ha. I was picturing the most wonderful finish line story, so confident in our training/being at sea level/having an incredibly strong group of women to work with and knowing we put our everything into this training.
And then the gun went off right at 7 and we were in the perfect placement. Seriously, EVERYTHING was going perfect. But when the first mile was going downhill (my specialty!!!) and my ‘conservative’ pace felt like a full on sprint, I got really afraid. Things have gone south in plenty of marathons at mile 18 or 20 and even 16 but I’ve never felt in mile 1 that something was wrong like I did yesterday. I’m not sure what it was but I did feel a little dizzy (like I did during my 10k this last summer that was really humid) and maybe I wouldn’t even have noticed the humidity if it was a good day but maybe my body just being off noticed those little things so much easier?
From the beginning I felt a little similar to the carb depleted mile that we did last week even though my body was full of carbs… it was a strange feeling.
Our husbands were the absolute best. They were at miles 6, 10, 16, 21, 26 and the finish! How we saw them so many times, I do not know. They were so encouraging, running up next to us and so supportive. I am so grateful for Andrew.
They were happy that we wore the jerseys that we did because it made us a lot easier than normal to spot!
At about this point we realized things weren’t changing. Something was not there. We had hit these paces or faster on tired legs in training over and over again and the effort was so forced yesterday. Emilee finally said something to me about how she had been feeling (we were both worried about ruining the other’s race by saying anything negative) and we made the goal to just make it to our husbands again and then we would figure out what to do.
My watch was off by a little bit because it wasn’t working in the beginning for some strange reason so I had to restart it. I didn’t know where we were exactly until the half-way mark and it was 1:25:01… Meaning that we needed a 1:19:59 for it to happen and spoiler… that definitely did not happen:) At about mile 15 Emilee started to feel a bit better and I fell back from her and was really craving some music ha.
I was taking in a gel and 4 ounces of water every 4-5 miles and finally some caffeine at mile 13.
I just have to shout out to this guy in this picture with the red shorts. When I saw Andrew at this point I started crying and he saw that. A minute later he went next to me and offered all sorts of encouraging comments, told me to stay with him and that he was rooting for me. People are the best. I felt that way the entire way. People out there cheering, helping each other and working hard towards goals.
I started seeing people peeling off and I wanted so badly to join them. There was a bus picking up people to take them to the finish and it took everything in me to not jump on. I was super positive with myself and cheering for each step so that’s a huge success! The entire time my thinking was there… I could do math, recite a poem if I needed haha, talk and my breathing never felt labored, my body was just gone.
The miles slowed down more and more but it was so rewarding to see that beautiful finish line.