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My very first marathon, done! Wait, what, I waited all this time to do that, and it’s done. Okay, time to sign up for another!

Here’s how it went down… Friday night, I went to the Expo, you can read about it here.

Saturday I spent all day watching the boyfriend do a bicycle race, or crit for those of you who know the lingo. I volunteered at the checkin table after he was done racing. Once I got home, I cooked myself some tortellini with some pasta sauce, nothing to crazy. I assembled my race bag, including all the extra clothes because down here in Virginia Beach you never know what type of weather you are going to get. Layed out everything I would wear and I went to bed around 8pm.

Sunday morning! The day I’ve been waiting my entire life for..it was finally here. I was sure I was not going to allow the clock to win this one. I was not going to be late to the start line by over sleeping or getting held up in traffic. Sooo I ensured the boyfriend that we needed to leave the house around 7am, that the race was at 8:30am. I had two banana english muffins with pumpkin butter on them, my normal cup of coffee, and we left the house.

Brandon would bike this event, and meet me at certain mile markers which we had mapped out throughout the entire race. I was ready with my iPod and iPhone, and everything else that I could think of. We arrived at the oceanfront at 7:30am, with plenty of time to spare. It was really windy and staying warm was a difficult task. I found myself in the atrium of a hotel near the start line until the last 15-20 minutes before the race began. I had a plan of what I was going to do throughout the race, and was sure that my music would last the entire 8 hours that I would take to complete my first marathon… untrained. The race started promptly at 8:30, the first two waves would go and then myself.

The first 3 miles would fly by, and I was amazed how quickly I warmed up. I took my hat, gloves off immediately, and put them in my jacket for safe keepings.  Between  miles 4-5 I would meet three amazing women, named Diane, Maggie, and Diane. They were my saving grace. I turned down my music on my ipod, took of my jacket, and we became quickly acquainted as we jogged through the forts for the race. Through the first fort there were hundreds of military out in their gear cheering us on, high fives, and lots of encouragement. We were out, of there and back on the road to head up the bridge again, this time I was not looking forward to the bridge, I wanted to roll down it… I wanted to swim through the water instead of climb that bridge. I surely did not train for this at all.

Once we were over the bridge, it was smooth sailing. I ran my first half marathon in a personal record time of 2:11! I had no idea at the time of course, I was listening to my body, my watch every 45ish minutes to consume another gel, and carrying on a conversation with my new friends from PA.  Around mile 15 Maggie, and Diane left us, and the other Diane stuck around with me which I will be forever grateful for. Through out the race, Brandon would find me and offer his water bottle that wasn’t Gatorade or water but instead something much better, electrolytes. Between mile 16-18, after I had realized this is the furthest I have ever run in my entire being, my left leg muscles began to cramp.  A slow walk, then a run, and a walk followed by stretching would continue on for about a solid mile. Was this the wall they were speaking of?! Because it surely hurt like I ran into a wall! This part of the race was beautiful, it was down Shore Drive in between tall trees which would shelter us from the harsh winds.

We would turn off of this road and turn into Fort Story where I would really hit the wall. I became cold, tired, upset, and had to mentally talk myself back into the race… numerous times. This part of the race was the hardest, it was cold, extremely windy since we are only hundreds of feet off of the beach, and it was quiet. There was no raving fans, no crowds, no houses, no one on bikes, just me the marathon, and other people around me fighting the same conditions, oh and the two water stops. I finally made it out of fort story, and was so ready to be done. I could actually picture myself finishing this race now. It was more of a possibility now after I suffered through that portion than it was the first 16 miles! Brandon was waiting for me as we exited the fort, and he took some awful pictures.

We were at mile 22 something. I knew I could run 4 miles… I run that easily around my neighborhood weekly! This is something I had to prep myself for. I was still fighting the cramps in my left leg, but I wanted more than ever to finish! As Diane and I would wind down the street headed back to the oceanfront, the crowds grew larger, and the spirits were high. For the first time in the day I looked at my watch and knew that I could actually achieve my goal of running a 5 hour marathon. One of the worst/best things about running in the town you know, you know the landmarks, and exactly how far it is until you are done. We finally hit the boardwalk, and I could see King Neptune in the distance, but for the first time in forever, I could not sprint to the finish line, and even though I just ran 26 miles…. that point two was killing me. I finally made it. I made it to the finish line and I saw Brandon running around on the side which just elated my spirits! Diane and I high-fived as we crossed the finish lined exhausted. We got out medals, banana’s, water, pretzels ( I was most happy about the salt here), and our finisher hat’s and beach towel’s…  and we were able to get a picture together before we headed out of the finisher shoot.

As I exited the finish line, Brandon and his parents were there. And I couldn’t be happier to have all of them there for the support and love. The first thing I did was take my shoes off, my feet were swollen and hot! (My feet swell, so I run with locklaces so that I can loosen my shoes throughout the race without taking much time.) The next thing to happen was to put my finisher’s hat on, and take a picture with Brandon.  Oh boy, I wish someone had told me my hat was messed up looking. There were plenty of pictures taken, and my legs were in extreme pain at this time. The finish line party was on the beach, and walking down the steps and through the sand took a while…

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Well, here we go… my very first marathon is in the books. Done, not even 5 hours long. Wait, you mean I waited like 8 years to do a marathon that I was terrified of, almost deferred it, and it only lasted 4 hours, 54 minutes?! I will do a race recap later this week, when I have my lovely pictures.

I’m stoked what can I say. Sign me up to do that again! Okay let me train this time. Maybe I can PR by an hour? 😀

Here is how it went down… I’ll start from about 4 months ago, right when training first started.

It’s October, I’m getting started with my training… Running, cycling, and maybe even some swimming. I hit a high of 65 miles that month of training. AMAZING. The highest mileage I had ever hit, and I’ve been running for about a decade now.  Now start the coughing… It is cold and I’ve been coughing for a month straight. Little exercises that I’ve been doing forever are now difficult and I’m having a difficult time breathing. I could not stand it so I took myself to the Dr… my worst nightmare. I hate going to the doctor, the dentist, the car shop, places where you rarely here, everything is great!

My doctor prescribed me an inhaler to help me with this breathing issues, this was after I was checked for pneumonia.  I have now had an inhaler to help me breath during the cold weathered months so that I may continue to exercise and breathe.

Well this took me off of my training plan, and then it was the holiday season. Cue the Christmas cookies, and my personal favorite, PUMPKIN MUFFINS! I wasn’t very active, other than eating and my 10 miler race that happened in December.

Well the new year came and I am determined to complete a triathlon so I’m back in the pool, swimming, getting my flip turn down! Cycling indoors on my trainer and occasionally outside when the warm weather has come. I have run a few times this year, no more than 4 miles I would say.

The boyfriend and I spoke of deferring the marathon until the next year, that way I would not injure myself, well that all sounded great and very convincing. I would go to the website, and would start entering my information…  and then I would wander off. I just could NOT bring myself to finish that deferral process. I did not want to hurt myself, but what if I walked/run it… A possibility. My goal then changed from 5 hours to FINISH.

You have to do what is right for yourself. I am so happy I did not defer my marathon, and now I ask myself, WHY DID I WAIT SO LONG to do a marathon!

Stay tuned for the Shamrock marathon recap!

Keep running!

Okay so it’s been a while since I’ve been on here. Major fail by me… the past few months I have spent hibernating, eating cookies, and staying indoors out of the wind, and cold.

Although the past month and half, I have swam, been learning the flip turn, and how to have a more efficient freestyle stroke. Signed up for the Tour de Cure Century ride, signed up for an olympic distance triathlon, found a new job, have I mentioned boyfriend. Yes I have a wonderful boyfriend whom fixes my bike, I mean whom I can ride with and run with.

I will get back on here more often and tell you about my adventures of my training, attempts, minor accomplishments, successes, and failed attempts. 🙂

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The Boyfriend and I

Here is my weekend forecast:

Saturday:

Shamrock Crit. A local bike race. The boyfriend is racing, and I will be spectating his race, then I will be volunteering with some awesome girls that I met at a group bike ride last week.

Sunday:
Shamrock Full Marathon…. Ohhhh eeeeem geeee.
My training is not where it should have been. I was going to defer this race, but B talked me into it, and I talked myself out of it. I developed some type of winter asthma that killed me after my first solid month of training, then I got sick, and I was sad… long story short, I went from having a 5 hr goal to the goal of finishing, setting my PR, and possibly doing another Full in Richmond in November this year. We shall see. Shamrock Marathon in Virginia Beach is put on by J & A racing, which is a GREAT organization. So I just couldn’t say No.

Any tips or suggestions, or words of motivation will be helpful. I have already picked up some nutrition and cut my toe nails… what else? 🙂

Beach to Battleship 140.6

Beach to Battleship 140.6October 17th, 2015
Time to take on the biggest physical and mental challenge !

Mileage 2015

Running 2015
(does not include treadmill)

Miles this Month: 12
Miles this Year: 88.5

Cycling

Miles this Month: 120
Miles this Year: 381.2

Swimming

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