5:40 - beep, beep, beep. it's the annoying machine telling me that's it's time to start my day. i can't say i hopped out of bed, but i hadn't really been sleeping anyway.
6:30 - time to leave the house. i think i have everything i need - hat, m&m's, water bottle, race bib. (i realize later i forgot gloves. awesome. luckily, 't' had an extra pair in her car.) i have not been training with a hat but if it rains, i will need it, so i wear it and pretend to like it. there is snow on the ground, but the sky is clear. i eat strawberries and a peanut butter cookie in the car. i should eat more, but my stomach is a nervous wreck.
7:00 - roller hockey championship game for oldest son. they win. he is awarded 'highest scorer' plaque.
8:30 - i meet my friends at the race start. we are so cute. (by the way, i forgot my timing chip in the car and had to run back for it.) it's cold, but there is no rain.
9:00 - race start. i have been training with the jeff galloway method of running 2 minutes, walking 1. i start off with 'm' in the third wave, but she is much faster than me and running continuously. 't', 'r' and 'e' were in the second wave. i keep up with 'm' for the first mile, but can't continue that. thanks 'm' for keeping me company.
mile 1 - i feel good but i am not sticking to my plan and i know i am going to regret it later.
mile 2 - water station! i've already polished off my bottle so i get a refill. i keep my eye on a girl doing a walk/run method. we are about the same pace and keep passing each other.
mile 3 - it is hot. i am cursing the extra layers i put on. i pull off my gloves. i pull out my baggie of m&m's and eat 10. yes, i counted.
mile 4 - water station! i've polished off my bottle again so i get another refill. i meet my pacer girl 'g'. we decide to run together, but she wants to run without walking. i agree. (in the back of my mind, i'm thinking it's a terrible idea. why don't i ever listen to myself?) the wind is blowing against us and provides a nice breeze.
mile 5 - not much memorable about mile 5. i think i still felt pretty good.
mile 6 - water station! i've polished off my bottle again. (see a pattern here? foreshadowing.) this station has girls scouts handing out thin mints. i take one, get a refill on my water and eat 10 more m&m's. the wind is getting old.
mile 7 - i hate the wind. seriously. plus it is starting to get cold again. i put back on my gloves. 'g' and i go back to run/walk.
mile 8 - water station! pottty break! i need another water refill. this station has gu, which i grab but do not use since i've never tried it before. 'g' goes ahead while i use the facilities, but i catch up. the wind has really picked up. my face feels sunburnt. it's not though - it's from the wind.
mile 9 - i'm cold, i'm sick of the wind and i am ready to be done. i eat 21 more m&m's. i ask 'g' to just walk this mile.
mile 10 - water station! i fill my water bottle and debate using the porta-potty. i decide to hold it. i really shouldn't have drank all that water at the beginning. i am feeling the regret of too much water and not enough walking breaks. oh yes i am. the wind blows off my hat and i get to repeat a part of the trail as i go after it. awesome. 'g' wants to get back to running, but i can't so she goes on ahead. thanks 'g' for keeping me company.
mile 11 - lovely wind. lovely rain. lovely uphill path. lovely feeling of needing to pee. the rain isn't a downpour; it's just enough to be annoying. i run 30 seconds, walk 30 seconds for a while, but i am just too tired to keep it up. i decide to walk. my hat blows off again. and again. and a third time. i get to chase it each time. dang it! i thought i was done with running! the last tenth of a mile has tons of motivational posters that bring tears to my eyes. it is not because i am miserable and want to quit. *that is my story and i'm sticking to it*
mile 12 - water station! another potty break! at least there is no line. (i had a tough time standing back up though.) i eat 10 m&m's. my hips hurt. i hate life in general and running in particular. at least the rain quit. but the wind. the wind is against me. literally.
mile 12.8 - i feel this particular hill deserves its own update. hill. very, very steep hill. oh, and i lose my hat and get to chase it again. at least i am going downhill for a few moments... but wait, i have to walk back up.
mile 13 - i try to run from this point on, but i just don't have anything left. i wait until until they announce my name at the finish line before sprinting the last 20 or so seconds. my friends are cheering for me (they all finished about an hour earlier), and i see the hubby and kids. success! i got my medal and the pain went away for, like, 1.2 seconds. (see the smile?)
the official time was 3 hours, 4 minutes. i was hoping to finish with a better time, but 1) i didn't follow my plan for walking breaks (which helps me run faster while feeling more refreshed); 2) i fell behind in my training by three weeks; 3) i did not do enough of my longer runs outside and my hips could tell; 4) the wind (i am not making excuses. much.); 5) although i ate well the night before, i think my fuel was a little bit lacking; 6) i was genuinely tired from being up so early.
oh, and i will never run with a hat again. grrr!