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LA Marathon: The Monsoon Experience

Monday, March 21, 2011

Nothing could have prepared me for yesterday. Just after we started raining (I am now editing, realizing that I meant to write running instead of raining, but maybe we did become one with the rain), there was a torrential downpour that did not let up until hours after I arrived home for the evening. The only way I can describe it is this: imagine that you are caught 22 miles away from home in a monsoon... you don't have access to a car or a bus, and you have to keep up with everyone else around you in order to get home... or else you will be stuck in the weather and lost and will not be able to find your way...oh, and you don't have an umbrella. I have actually run 20 miles in the pouring rain before...it didn't even come close to yesterday's experience. I am fortunate, however. I finished in shock at what happened, and shivered as I'd been in soaking wet clothes for hours. However, I was not injured, and I did not get hypothermia (thousands of the runners were evaluated for hypothermia, thousands did not show or finish, and hundreds had to be picked up by buses along the route). I may be sore as I sit and recover today, but I am warm and have food.

This was the hardest task I have ever accomplished. To be honest, I don't have a true sense of it yet. I now aspire to different things, like returning to my love of physical activity without necessarily having to complete runs three times a week.
There may come a time when I check out shorter distance events, since I have now proven to myself that I am a capable runner. After yesterday, a half-marathon or a 10k does not feel like a big deal. Two years ago, a 5k was a huge deal for me. On most days this year, my short runs weren't much longer than 5ks, and they still felt like a big deal. On other days, my short Saturday runs were 10-13 miles, and even my 20 mile long runs did not feel difficult. It is all a matter of perspective. As they say, everyone has good and bad runs. Its to be expected.

All in all, I feel fortunate that I survived. I can't wait to see the photos from the marathon. It was certainly an experience to remember.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
  • STIPER23
    Wow. What an experience. I know the feeling. 5k runs are now my short runs, but I am just now training for a HM distance. Was it your first marathon?
    3161 days ago
  • STEPPYSUE
    Good for you girl! But thinking of it just makes me shiver to the bone. You lived up to your Sparkname on Sunday! emoticon emoticon emoticon
    3181 days ago
  • MORTICIAADDAMS
    It sounds gruesome. I got you made it through it okay. emoticon
    3188 days ago
  • GREEKGAL1
    Congratulations! You did it and in terrible conditions. You should be very proud of yourself.
    3189 days ago
  • APRILBLESS
    Girl, CONGRATULATIONS!!!!! You are a warrior. An unbelievably fierce woman warrior. A marathon in a pouring rain??? I think you can definitely conquer the world with ease now... (laughing).

    You are incredible, and an inspiration. I am so so so so soooooo HAPPY that you crossed that finish line. I know that felt AWEsome. I can't wait to see the pics!!!
    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    You deserve a trophy, and soooo much more!!! (lol) Rest up well my dear...
    emoticon emoticon
    3190 days ago

    Comment edited on: 3/22/2011 9:49:18 AM
  • CANNIE50
    What an accomplishment! My one and only marathon was completed in similar conditions. It was raining sideways and there were 50 mph gusts coming off the bay. I wanted to quit by mile 5. It took me so long to finish but finish I did. Aren't you glad you stuck it out? I always encourage runners who are at all interested in doing races to train for a marathon first because, after that, everything else seems so do-able (as you mentioned). I compare it to having triplets first. Having one or two at a time suddenly doesn't seem so daunting. "You never know how tough you are until you discover what stops you." Clearly, you are tough - a very good quality, esp. in a runner. emoticon
    3190 days ago
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