Monday, May 10, 2010

First Time Is the Hardest

What a weekend!  Where to start... I will start at the beginning and this may be a two part series.  The pictures are at home, in the camera, and so I will write. 

I took off Friday at noon.  I took Matthew with me to the Indy Mini Marathon Expo in Indy.  We had a ball.  I am SO glad he came with me.  It was the BEST to have a co-pilot (well a back seat co pilot!) We explored the entire expo and hit the race car crash TV THREE times.  Before I knew it, it was 4:15pm so we decided to stay in the city and have dinner.  Than we drove home and passed out.  Favorite part of the trip was Matthew was seriously delirious with exhaustion.  I made him turn off his Leapster thing and so he was rambling NON stop about everything and driving me batty.  I told him "Matthew you are delirious."  Silence.  Than "Mom, ask me if I am a truck?"  "Matthew are you a truck?" "NO I am a delirious man who toots."  He said this at least fourty time before we hit out driveway and he laughed his rump off every. single. time, he said it.  At one point he said "Mommy I have no idea why, but I CANNOT STOP LAUGHING." Bahaahahaha.  Delirious.

Saturday morning, I was up at 4:40a and we were all out the door by 5:30a.  I leapt out of the Rav in traffic close to the starting line and walked into the 30 mile an hour wind to corral F.  I stretched and jumped up and down and was super glad I decided to wear the Cuddle Duds shirt under my t-shirt because DOOODE it was cold.  They opened the corrals but no one went in SO I went in.  I was the third person in the corral.  I went to the front because the hell if I am going to be in there that early freezing my arse off WHY NOT?!  At one point as the corrals were filling up I looked back at corrals F through Z and I watched the waves of humanity filling those spaces and I grew weepy... Why? 

Two years ago at that time, I was pregnant with a tiny baby and I was wondering how she would change my life.  I had started on this journey to get fit before I got pregnant and mostly stuck with it through my pregnancy with her.  And one year ago at this time we were packing up to fly to see my mother in law die.  Last year, May was the hardest and most depressing month of our lives.  It crushed us as a family unit, as a married unit... it forever changed me.  Both a high and a low that happened around this very same time in my life over the past two years.  On top of that, my boss's son, Zachary, died in May two years ago and I thought about what a bitch Cancer is, what a lovely sweet young man Zachary was.  How unfair this disease is that strikes people with no rhyme nor reason.  And largerly I was thinking about my kids and Mother's day and I just got all emotional at how much work to it took to get here, to do this and how lucky I feel to be alive and able to do something like this, for the first time!

Anywho, then I hunkered down behind the wall of men in Corral E who kept me warm and I hoped that none of them farted in my face :)  I was chatting with the ladies around me about how I liked that we were short and had this nice human wall to keep us warm.  The race started and we started to walk ahead and seriously I was running and over the start line in just a few minutes.  truly I was glad at the 11th hour that I submitted my time for a preferred corral.  As I started running, and probably before that, I realized I needed to pee.  I thought 'NAW it will go away once I start running' but it just got worse.  I went out fairly quickly dodging and weaving and trying to get ahead as fast as possible.  I decided the first set of port a potties I came to I would stop.  And so I stopped around mile 2.  Note to future self, untie your pants and untuck your shirt BEFORE you hit the potty.  It was fine and I got in and out fairly quickly (other than FORGETTING TO LOCK the door. DOH which I thankfully discovered AFTER I peed and pulled my pants up when I nice man opened the door on me! ACK!!!) 

It took me a bit to get myself readjusted but than I just started running.  I knew that Kevin and the kids would be around or near the Speedway so I started looking for them right around there.  I quickly found Kevin and Marisa and screamed/waved my arms.  YEAH!  I saw them though I was confused as to where Matthew might be (turns out he was with Jamie, Kevin's firefighter friend, stuffing his face with french toast... stinker ;)  It gave me a boost to see them smiling and waving!

I decided 'hey this would be a good time for a gel.'  I was on the fence about gels until this weekend.  I had decided after this experience they are NOT for me.  I took a bit of gel and swallowed it and immediately my stomach flip flopped.  I thought 'OMG I am going to barf right now'.  I did not.  I took a little more and that went down well but I threw it out at the pit stop right before the track and got a glass of water. 
That is the other thing I will do different for any long races.  I will get my own water belt.  Drinking water from water stations made me gulp alot of air which I think led to my stomach hurting so badly from the gel.  I could never get enough water down each time and it was just frustrating overall. 

I ran onto the race track and that was about the only awesome part of the race track... sadly.  I hated the track.  It is graded for racing and so I felt off kilter the whole time.  I started getting sick again and it was boring as all get out.  Until that time there were tons of people on the course but on the track it was just track and runners and HELL on earth.  Also, my iPod died around that time.  Than I died.  Actually, it was fine.  I need a new iPod but for now it is what it is.  It was just a bad mental state for it to die.  But I actually enjoyed not having music.  I listened the conversations around me and the REALLY bad music being played on the course and the best was the last Gatorade (BLECK) station when everyone was pooped out and it was just feet smacking on pavement only it was puntuated by the slap STICK slap STICK of rubber and sweet sticky water on pavement for about 100 yards. 

I finally got off the track and got my head back into a good space (that is around mile 8-9) but my freaking gut hurt.  I thought there is NO way I am going to make it without well er ah going to the bathroom.  I passed two different sets of bathrooms before I finally decided I needed to stop or risk having a mess to contend with.  I decided this at the VERY LAST SET OF BATHROOMS available.  The wind hit me in the face then the side and than the back and I KNEW I had to stop.  I was clearly UNWELL.  I was prepared this time for the stop but that stop took MUCH longer for reasons I will not go into.  WORST NIGHTMARE SITUATION basically and that is all I am going to say...  That was around mile 11. 

At some point on the track, I had mostly given up on getting my goal time of 1:50 or under.  As I was in the port a potty I thought 'OMG I am not going to be able to run the last three miles' but then I slapped myself mentally and got out there running.  I felt 100% better so there was that.  I had been having fun the whole way anyway so at that point when I thought I am not going to make my goal time I just had an EVEN more fun time!  I was already wildly waving my arms at every TV crew camera or getting people to take photos of me and I cheered and danced with the dancers so overall I was having a good time and I said thank you seemingly 100 million times because dude the volunteers at this thing KICK ASS! 

Anyway the last couple of miles were great.  I saw Melissa and her kids and I waved wildly and said something like 'I AM DYING' and I was.  I mean my body was done for.  I just wanted it to end but in a good way!  I actually thought at some point 'I am not going to have anything left to sprint in' but I surprised myself and I did!  I saw the 3/4 mile marker and just started going as fast as I could!  It was amazing to see the bleachers and the crowds and I was almost there, yeah!  I was the dork out there yelling and telling everyone around me COME ON LET'S GO YEAH WE ARE ALMOST THERE!

I want to especially thankful to that old dude in the long sleeved red shirt who passed me like I was standing still on the track who turned to me, gave me a thumbs of up and said 'keep it up, you can to do it!'  He totally helped me get through the track.  And also there was the dude who said "HEY BLOOMINGTON GOOD JOB!" And smiled and laughed at me as he passed me.  Just took me out of a bad moment on the run in the 'hood where I thought look how nice it looks to walk, rather than run!

Between the track and mile 11 I said to myself  'self let's try to get under 2 hours on this biatch' and so when I saw the clock and it said 1:56 I knew I was going to do it.  I hit the finish line at 1:58 and I was thrilled.  I was even more thrilled when I saw that my official time was closer to my original goal that I thought!

The official time was 1:53.50.  I finished 6111 out of 35999 runners.  It was awesome.  I guzzled down my entire bottle of Aquafina water in seemingly a gulp and I ate two cookies and I had my photo taken at the finish line thing. I found Kevin and the kids.  I was freezing and just wanted to get warm and go home.  The wind seemed to pick up in the park so we left.  On the drive home, I just kept telling Kevin how rotten I felt.  I was amazed at how badly I felt.  I never felt this bad even after a really long hard run.  I had a massive headache and I NEEDED to use the bathroom again.

The afternoon was hellish.  I was exhausted, I had a massive headache that would not go away, my legs ached but mostly my WHOLE ENTIRE BODY ached.  I was misrable.  I made a grilled cheese sandwich in hopes that some grease and cheese would calm my belly as oddly it usually does?!  I took a tiny nap but the kids were up and Marisa was screaming for me.  Kevin and Matthew went to attend to some Mother's Day stuff and I was with Marisa and I felt like death was warming over me.  I wanted to just put my head down and sleep my head was aching SO badly.  The boy got home and gave me my mother's day gifts early.  Now I have to say Mother's Day to me is just another day.  I like the honor and all but really do I need a day?  Not so much.  Just my opinion I suppose and everyone is definitely different.

I loved my gifts.  The kids painted ceramic flower pots and Kevin and Matthew put pretty flowers in them!  They got me cards (Kevin's made me cry.)  And Kevin got me red roses.  And they blessedly brought me Starbucks.  I told them I wanted ice cream so we went to the bank and DQ.  Which was great.  I got that down and we made dinner.  I could barely eat again though.  Basically after the kids went to bed I went to bed too.  I was alternately freezing and hot and my head was pounding.  I was up from 11:30p until well past 1:00a The dogs were up, Marisa was up, and I just felt like hell.  I finally got everyone back to sleep and watched Betty White on SNL (funny shit!) and the mini race coverage replay (ha) and I took some aspirin.  At some point I thought my gawd maybe I have brain tumor because the base of my skull was pounding away and I was sure I had a fever.  Finally around 3:00a, my fever broke.  Lo, Sunday was better.  I felt better other than my freaking legs not recovering at all.  My quads feel like I broke those bones.  And the places where I have shin splints are massive divots where there should be solid bone.  Yummers, right?

I am taking a break from running for a bit to get my body healthy.  Ashley messaged me on FB that she had a fever and was sick/achy all over but she would be at work and could it be what Kevin had earlier in the week?  "Errr, Kevin, were you sick earlier this week?" I said to him. Than it dawned on me that Kevin went home on Tuesday SICK.  He said his stomach and head hurt and he was achy and felt like hell and he ended up sleeping for almost 8 hours.  He was fine the next day.  SO it would appear to add to the allure of my first half marathon I did it with the beginnings of some kind of stomach flu!? 

SO that kicks ass.

Heh.  Seriously, it was fun.  When I was in that 2nd port a potty I was like HELL NO I AM NEVER EVER FUCKING RUNNING A LONG RACE LIKE THIS AGAIN.  But at the end I had changed my tune.  Now that I know I was sick and my experience might have been different from the one I had had I not been sick I am sure I will try it again.  For now my goal is to get my body healthy (shins and hip I am looking squarely at YOU), lose about 10 lbs and start lifting weights again.  I am going to start cross training TONIGHT on the bike! 

I am excited to be done, I am excited to have made it.  And now I am ready for vacation! I will post some photos tonight!
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