I did it!! Cleveland Marathon 2013
Monday, May 27, 2013
Well, I did it!!! I'm sitting down a week after my first full marathon to tell all my fellow sparkers about it!
First, training... what a commitment! I followed a Higdon training program and stuck to it this year. I didn't deviate from any mileage that the program stated! I incorporated yoga into my training program after I was released to run after my pelvic fracture.
Second, the Marathon!!! What a trip! It is the experience of a lifetime!! The first half went AWESOME!!! The temperatures were warm but it was overcast and a slight breeze from the lake. Then came that time.... turn left with the half marathoners (my mind wanted to go there like a security blanket) or turn right and keep on trucking with the other full marathoners (my mind also wanted that, knowing how hard I worked for it)! I made the right!!!! I did it!!! This was it... forward to the finish.. whether I ran, walked or crawled to that finish! Things were going smoothly...... a nice steady pace. Then it happened!!! They red flagged the course at mile 15 (green-->yellow--->orange--->r
ed--->black)! I wanted to cry.. the sun was out with no clouds, the humidity had risen along with the temp creating a heat index of 85+ in which they red flag the course for conditions. Black flag is shut down!! Now you have to understand.. I do not get along well with high humid heat! My body say... "f*&^K you" and shuts down and then my mind goes with it. So at this point it became a mental game for me! I kept moving forward and reached mile 21 , looking and feeling completely delirious at this point! The course support was awesome, every water station helped you... gave you water, filled my hand held and sprayed us down with water mist, all while I kept moving! However, at mile 21 I also started to have cramping in my left foot (dang tendonitis), so I started to run/walk interval (walk 0.25/run 0.75 mile). I made it through with another runner doing the same thing as me! We both pulled through it together! I also had a friend that had run their first half come to mile 22 with my "fuel" to help me finish. What a moment... it was like a jack pot seeing their smiling face! they also stayed with me until right before the finish! The finish.. what a feeling! I can not even put into words!!! Miles 21-25 are definitely challenging (training doesn't go beyond 20), they aren't kidding when they say you "dig deep". I can say that the mental thought process that occurs is incredible! Unexplainable.. a place I've never been. And the feeling of crossing that finish line... WOW!
Third, recovery!! I followed the recovery guide to the very last point! I took the ice bath, wow what a trip! I think that was more painful than parts of my run. Laying down for a couple hours then showering.. eating! You wouldn't believe how difficult that actually is. My stomach shuts down for hours after I run! I forced myself to eat.. then took a shower and took a short walk like the recommend. I was a little slow...lol! The next day I woke up like a truck had hit me! My feet were sore and swollen and my shoulders from the swinging and pounding on pavement! Then I realized that it hadn't even been 24 hours since I crossed the finish line! I kept icing.. and resting! Then Tuesday... I woke up and wow!!! I felt great... feet were 100% better as were shoulders.. I headed to the gym and rode the bike and walked as part of recovery.. I did the same Wednesday with the edition of a massage!!! Recovery was going well! I returned to work Thursday (took 3 days post marathon vacation). I also returned to running!! I ran 6 miles at a nice slow (slower than my normal pace) and felt good! Then took the next day as rest. Saturday I paced a new runner at a slow steady pace for 5 miles! Went awesome. Then Sunday I ran a 5K race with another new runner (her first ever, never running before 3 weeks ago). That went awesome! Today..... Got out for an 8 mile run!! Wooohooo Back in the game!
Now... if you had asked me at mile 22 if I'd do another marathon... you wouldn't have wanted to heard the expletives coming out of my mouth! The day after by noon the decision was made..... Columbus 2013 here I come! Yep, I'm going for it again!!!!!
Marathoning.... just another runners addiction and now having done it.. I completely understand so much more!!!!