I think this is the hardest race recap I have written to date and I can't believe how hard it is to organize my thoughts. So, let's start at the beginning.
Why I ran? Because it was always an inner ambition in me to run a marathon and to remember and honor my Dad.
The Expo - It was quite large and a lot of vendors were present. I loved stopping by to pick up some new Bondi Bands and my darling daughter and I wrote on "the wall". I also picked up a new hat for myself (love them for beach days) and my darling daughter got a new shirt. We both enjoyed drinking some lemon-infused water and my dear hubby took pictures of us enjoying the moment. The only oddity was that the half marathoners and marathoners got to pick up their "finisher" shirt before even toeing the line.
Front Street Mile with my darling daughter and since our car was trapped in the race course, we had an early dinner and enjoyed the scenery and poked our heads in a few shops. This was ideal since my mom and aunt were in town for the "festivities". And later that night, I got to eat a bit more pizza before going to bed early. Yep, my little darling was so beat that she zonked out so I took advantage of another good night of sleep.
However, sleep ended at 1:00 am when I woke with a terrible headache that had me feeling nauseous. The cause may have been how I fell asleep on the pillows or the AC in the hotel room (we don't have AC at home) but regardless, I woke my dear hubby so he could kindly give me a neck and shoulder massage and by the time my alarm went off at 3:00 am I was fine.
I woke and ate my pre-race meal, rinsed in the shower, and went through the whole pre-race dressing routine --- sunscreen, Body Glide, and all. My dear hubby walked me to the shuttle and off I went. The bus ride was long and people were discussing their multiple marathons and it had me feeling uneasy for a bit but I brought my mind into focus. Everyone has a first and this was mine.
At the start I grabbed some Powerade, took a couple of potty breaks, and got into my time corral and we were walked to the start. The gun went off and before I even really realized it I was running the start of my first marathon.
I made sure I started with an easy pace and didn't get propelled forward by those passing me. By four miles I needed a potty break but passed up waiting in line behind five others. I opted to run another two miles and try again and tried not to get frustrated by the multiple men heading into the trees for their breaks. I paused my Nike+ at my break and unfortunately it didn't really restart when I asked it to so it missed recording about one mile of my run.
I was running well, refueling and hydrating as planned, and by mile 7 I began passing others. I continued this throughout the hills where I felt completely strong. I felt I could go faster but didn't give in since I didn't know how much I would need at the end. Somewhere around 18 miles my body began to complain and I began my mind games to keep me going. I was still passing some runners and some runners passed me. I played some leap frog with one running couple throughout the remainder of the race.
At mile 21 I felt I could really use my Dad's presence but instead got greeted and handed water by a young runner I know on island who was working at the aid station. It was a welcome hello and revitalized me some. I kept running and told myself to keep running, no matter what the pace.
23 I saw a runner down being aided by a patrol man calling in support. I was grateful I could still run and tried to pick up my pace a bit. At mile 25 I knew I was going to finish fine and was grateful once again as an ambulance went flying by. At mile 26 I saw my mom and my aunt on the side cheering and I made the final stretch but not without taking that short detour to the side to high five my darling daughter.
My time was 4:46:40 with an overall pace of 10'58". Not the pace I dreamed of but I am happy. I finished and I could walk after. I was sore a few days but I could still walk and enjoy the time with my family.