Wednesday, May 25, 2011
Ogden Marathon 2011
For the last three weeks I have had so much anxiety over this race. I would back out one second and then change my mind the next. Someone would ask me if I was ready and I would start crying. My training did not go as well as I had wanted it to. I had to take two weeks off when I was diagnosed with Trigeminal Neuralgia and then a week off (when it was my longest training run of 20 miles) for a possible stress fracture. I was scared that I would not finish and afraid of the pain. I did yoga sometimes twice a day to get over the anxiety and to help me relax the week of the race. I made a mental list of all the positives that had happened since my last marathon over a year ago. I have lost over 70lbs, better training (really), I eat so much healthier and I was not out site-seeing the entire day before the marathon (Like in San Francisco) and the marathon did not seem entirely up hill like the last one. It really helped out a lot. The day before the race was a perfect day. I MADE sure that I carb-loaded (I usually don’t eat a lot of carbs) and drank plenty of fluid. At the expo I started having a panic attack, I was shaking and very teary-eyed again, doubting my ability to even be able to do this race. Dale kind of insisted we listen to the Run like a Mother ladies and I am glad we did because they gave some really good advice that helped me get through the race. One thing they said is have a mantra. I did at that time, it was “ I’m ready I’m ready” until Dale brought it to my attention that Sponge Bob said that all the time, I still used it even though I did not know if it would work having a picture of Sponge Bob stuck in my head.
The morning of the race I woke up prior to the alarm clock going off. Really that is unheard of for me. I usually hit the snooze button until I have 15 minutes to get ready. Dale took me to the buses, I found some of my running friends and was glad I did. Talking to them helped keep my mind off of what I was about to do. As the race neared I got ready, dropped of my bag and went to the end of the line. I normally don’t make chit chat with people I don’t know but was determined to make small talk with anyone to help ease the anxiety. Then I was off. I chunked the race into three mile sections. Whenever I passed the set of three I would celebrate to myself, I never counted down like I did at the last marathon until I got to mile 25. I jogged the entire first half. I felt good and light on my feet but my right knee was super stiff by mile 9. I knew after passing the volunteers at mile 13 that I had to push it to get past the dam by 11:30. I ran for a while with a guy that was running with Team in Training, we helped push each other along. He keep giving me a count down till 11:30. An hour and a half to go, an hour to go, thirty minutes to go, etc.. I could not take the countdown so I just pushed it past him as fast as I could. I could see the dam in the distance. This was the part that I was having anxiety about. I did not know if I could do it and it stressed me out, I did not want to be driven down the canyon in a school bus. I kicked it into gear, my legs feeling pretty tired and the knee very tight. There were people at the end of the dam taking pictures and cheering everyone on. A guy was motioning to me to keep going, keep going. I passed the dam, just what I thought I could NOT do, and my eye’s filled with tears. I was overwhelmed that I did it. As I was running down the canyon and looking around at how amazing and beautiful it was I totally fell in love with running and was pumped. I keep on jogging down the canyon, picking people off one by one (felt really good to do that) but I made sure that I would say something encouraging to everyone I passed. At about mile 21 I was running out of steam. The team in training guy and a friend had caught up with me. I talked and chatted with them for two miles. They were struggling and did not know if they could finish. At mile 23 a group of about 7 of my employees were standing on the Ogden Parkway cheering me on. Again they made me cry, I could not believe that they waited there to cheer me on, they had signs and all. That was just the motivation I needed to kick it into gear and start picking people off one by one again. I passed 8 people on my way into the finish line. I ran all the way down Grant Ave. I could see Dale and my kids waving and cheering me on. I looked at the clock 6 hours 37 min. I thought it would take me an hour to an hour, hour and an half longer. I was elated that I finished with a time better than I thought. I gave Dale and my kids hugs and kiss’s then I had to chase the medal dude down to get my medal because he was too busy taking pictures for different groups of girls that had just finished, and I wanted that medal!!! I can’t wait till my knee heals, so I can start training for the next race. I was ready for another one on Sunday if it weren’t for me knee I probably would have been out running on Sunday. Instead of telling people now that I am slow, I say I am slower than most.
For me it is not about the time I get at the finish line. It is about the journey I had the last four months preparing for race day. It is about the challenges I was given and how I over came them. It is about what I learned about myself and how I was going to incorparte what I learned in a postive manner in my live to change the course of my life.
Stay tuned next week I will be announcing my first contest ever.