Mile 9 is always my enemy and it was no different on this day. Thankfully, I had friends meeting up with me at mile 10 so I figured I could get through mile 9. I was happy this was an up and back course because I believe I would have stopped at the half-marathon mark had that been an option.
At around mile 10, two of my friends, Melita and Jessie, started running the course with me and it was good that they started running with me because that's when I started to think "I don't have any idea how I am going to run another 16 miles." Around mile 11, my friend, Tami caught up with us and decided to run.
This is also the part where my stomach started having significant gastrointestinal problems. I felt extremely sick and needed to stop. But, I really wanted to get a better half-marathon time than I did at the Lincoln Half-Marathon so I kept going without stopping and I beat that time. I was also on track to finish in the allotted time.
It all went downhill from there. After I hit 13.1, I started walking because I NEEDED to stop or I was going to be sick. We finally got to a porta-potty and I was able to stop. After this, a lot of the race is a blur. My stomach was going crazy, I had to walk a lot more than I wanted and my blood sugar levels were so low due to not fueling much during the half-marathon portion, that I thought I was going to faint. At this point, it was one foot in front of the other to finish.
I didn't end up finishing in the allotted time but that was ok, because I finished. I've decided that finishing something that feels impossible, fundamentally changes you. I don't think I have an excuses anymore because when I had 9 miles left, I really didn't know how I could make it through those miles and somehow I did. It makes me believe that I am capable of more than I have ever allowed myself to be capable of.
I was also overwhelmed by all the support. Friends came out to cheer for me and run with me. All of them are amazing (Jess, Amber, Alicia, Sarah, Jane and Erin). And each friend that came out meant sooo much and gave me a little bit extra that I needed to complete the race. I remember saying yesterday that I needed to make a note for myself about how terrible the marathon was so I never run one again. But honestly, now I kind of want to. It was HORRIBLE but with a little more training, hopefully I'll be out there for significantly less than 7 hours and now that I know that I can...I feel like I really should:)
|Amber and Alica both came out to cheer for me, it was awesome!|
|Jenny was one of the people with the race, she was nice enough to stay with us until we completed the race..otherwise we might have gotten super lost:)|
|At the end of the marathon..don't I look relieved?|
|Tami came out and did 13 miles of the marathon with me, she wants to run the Lincoln Marathon next year. Go Tami!|