Tuesday, November 18, 2008

I finished my first 26.2

Purposely, I have allowed the dust to settle, the sky to clear, the fanfare to calm, and the experience of finishing my first marathon to sink into my mind, before I took time to place my thoughts in writing for this blog. I will be perfectly honest, I was anticipating and expecting a much better run performance from myself, not dismissing the fact, that this was the first time to run 26.2 miles. 

I was having a wonderful day, this was what I had been waiting for, dreaming for, and training for, to run a marathon. It was at last years Route 66, by a fluke that I had convinced a friend that we could run the 1/4 marathon. No, we had never run that far before, but we knew we could run 3 miles and a 1/4 is just 3 more miles than that. It was when we finished the 1/4 marathon, that I decided that I wanted to run a marathon.

So, here I was a year later lined up with runners, gladly awaiting the official start of the Route 66 Marathon. I was thinking, this is just another long run along Riverside Drive, how many times had I been up and down Riverside Drive this past year? 

The start began and so did I, along with so many other runners and of course, my faithful Runner Girl Power friend Linda. The run actually was not too bad, fact is, I was enjoying the day, not often do you get to run down the streets with people cheering and waving, while chatting to other runners who have traveled near and far to run this race. 

Somewhere, I lost Linda & Tammy along the run. I had looked back and they were no longer running behind me. I opted to soldier on, keep my pace and run this race.  And run is what I did, if you ran the marathon, you know the route...all the way down Riverside to the Jenks bridge, around the loop and then back across the bridge to Riverside.

Things were good, running was good and I was staying at a nice even pace. As the miles clicked by, I actually was getting really excited, as I knew eventually I would get to run the hills. I have enjoyed our hill training and knew once I got to the hills, it would be all down hill, although I would be running up hill.

Just as Superman has no power over kryptonite, I discovered that I have no power over my legs having severe cramps. I could run through the cramp in my feet and calves, but not the quads and much to my dismay, I had to take walking breaks until the cramps would subside and I could run again. This was disheartening at best...

I have heard it said, that marathon running is 90% mental, so what does one do when the 10% is overriding the 90% that is still in the game and wanting to go? I guess this is when one learns the lesson, that it's not the destination, but it really is about the journey.

I finished this first marathon, was not as pretty as I wanted it to be, but I did finish. I have the shirt, the medal and the time to prove it. I am also ready to begin again, to train for another run, wherever coach Kathy charts our running course, I will be there.  

Congrats to all of you who reached your goals!! 

Special props to Linda & Tammy, great going.


Bobby said...

I too am ready to begin again, to train for another run. We can only improve from here. Way to go. Looking forward to seeing more happy Rachael.

Rachael Alise said...

Hey Bobby! Thanks...it's all good my friend. Runner Girl Power will be back out there on the trail, with our Whoo hoo's to you. I just wish Linda would let me wear my cape. LOL

TATUR Dave said...

You asked, what does one do when the 10% is overriding the 90% that is still in the game and wanting to go?

For me, it happened when I got to the port-a-pottie after somewhere mile 19. I didn't really have to go. I could have held it, but I wanted an excuse to sit down just for a few seconds. Then I thought, "hey, I don't have to come out of this thing!" I knew right then I had lost it mentally. I still finished, though.

Rachael Alise said...

Thanks Tatur Dave...the thought never occurred to me to stop, sit down, raise the white flag...I just wanted to keep running...didn't need a pep talk, just needed my stupid legs to stop cramping up...physical limitations, just stink...but I take heart in knowing, I will race again...Whoo Hoo! RGP Activate!!

T Z said...

Way to go, Rachel. You do seem to make running look easy.

And, congrats to you for the recent change in your "relationship status" on Face Book!

Rachael Alise said...

Thanks TZ...you know...I really like to run...it's not even about the race or the time, although I do want to perform well...but it's just getting the chance to run.

I felt good Thursday evening...I know, I know...stay doing lite runs for the moment.

Whoo hoo...