Long Beach ICB Marathon RACE REPORT!
Monday, October 10, 2011
Spent Saturday at my aunt and uncles house..just relaxed, stayed positive although my stomach was in knots and I was SUPER nervous about the run. Had In-N-Out burger and french fries for dinner :). Went to bed around 10, fell asleep probably around 11 but then kept waking up after that!
Alarm goes off at 4:30 and I already laid everything out in order so it was very quick and easy to get ready. Came down to the kitchen and made oatmeal, and had water. My aunt was up so we chatted for a bit, both waking up LOL then about 5:30, we headed to the car and she drove me to Long Beach.
We drove into it and I saw the sea of runners walking towards the spot, so I had my aunt drop me off, got my good luck hug and walked with everyone to the start. LET ME TELL YOU, there were tens of thousands of runners out there (mostly half marathoners) so the line for the porta potties?!? WAS CRAZY!!!!! I stood in line because I knew by the time it was my turn, id have to go!
Anyway, after awhile, it was time to line up for our waves. And it was HUGE. I couldnt even see the end of the line, I found my wave SUPER fast and stayed put. I saw the sunrise, and it was absolutely BEAUTIFUL. We were right by the water, and it was perfect.
FINALLY it was time to go, go, go..first gun went off at 7, and my wave crossed the start about 7:20.
I felt great. There were sooo many people around (half marathoners stayed with us until about mile 10!!! and there were 10,000 half marathon runners), so I didnt want to slow down! The first spectator sign was perfect it said "HURRY UP, ITS EFFEN COLD!!!" cracked me up. And kept a smile on my face. I had my music goin, I felt all of you cheering me on and pushing me and it was perfect.
Mile 1 came and went and then I heard a SPLAT!!! A runner tripped and fell flat on the ground. A group of people stopped to help, so I kept going. But lemme say this. we were running on the street, and they were trying to cut in front of everyone by jumping over curbs and everything else, which i'm sorry..IS NOT SMART!!!!!! You are asking to get hurt! And then about 5 minutes later, someone else did it! Crazy.
We ran around the harbor, by the queen mary and the cruise ships, along the water, up and down the car ramps (okay the UP part wasnt fun but not TERRIBLE esp since it was the beginning), then we ran along the beach. I felt amazing, felt strong and hit mile 6. Saw the time and was thrilled to know I was pretty much at my 10k speed (give or take). Kept movin along, and didnt even realize how fast I was going until I hit mile 10. I was SHOCKED that I had only been running for less than 2 full hours! I had been taking Gu in every 30 minutes, and water.
Then, it was time for the split. Marathoners to the left, Halfers go right. And then it was time to really get in my own zone. There wasnt much of a crowd, but enough runners to not feel like I was alone or behind. Kept goin and we were heading towards Cal State Long Beach..now that was fun. first before hitting campus, we ran to the group of middle schoolers there cheering everyone on and giving high fives..they were also one of our water stops. Looped around and passed them and onto campus..first group up cheering us on?! The track team. They were dancing around, blaring music, yelling and screaming for us, handing out high fives to anyone that needed it! Felt great and got their energy and pushed along..saw the pyramid building (literally a pyramid), and kept goin.. then came..THE GREEKS! They were INSANE!!!! They made like a tunnel of people all of them had their hands out for DOUBLE high fives! WOO! After them, it was around mile 17..and I hit.my. wall. I was tired, my legs were SCREAMING, and a hill was coming up in the distance. I stopped to walk, and couldnt get my groove back. So I pulled out my cell and read my texts from my 'text cheerleaders' and let me tell you, IT HELPED. Then, i switched to LIGHTNINGRUNNERS song turned it up LOUD and started to jog...SIDE STITCH. okay, walk the hill, drink water, drink cytomax, take a chocolate gu, breathe deep and slow, arms above the head,..ok gone. Legs HUUUURT, kept telling myself 'its going to hurt walking OR running but you will be prouder if you run' so I jogged. FINALLY got to mile 20 and woo I was HURTIN. not gonna lie. And spectators?! Were not cheering except for their family member IF they happened to be running in our group! It was sad! But then, I saw the sweetest thing. A dad was running, and his family was up ahead, and his two little kids got so excited when they saw him, they ran up to him and he took their hands and the 3 of them ran holding hands for a few seconds! So sweet. Completely warmed my heart! Did a walk/jog/run combo and kept chasing my rabbits..I kept having to switch rabbits because i'd pass them, then after awhile my old rabbit would pass me, and so on. More like I was playing tag LOL.
Miles 20-24 were pretty much all the same. Every mile felt like an eternity! Legs were killing, BOTH knees were hurting but not pain like when i was injured..so that made me happy. FINALLY i hit mile 25, and I was walking, then I saw the 5 hour pacer over my shoulder, and i seriously kicked into HIGH GEAR. I ran my HEART out. I cranked my music like no other, I focused in on that clock reading me under 5 hours. I knew i would just have to push it for 11 minutes, i dug deep and just KILLED IT. The crowds between mile 25 and the end were HUGE, it was a blast. People screaming and cheering, telling us "you're almost there, just around the corner!!!!" and I found my rabbit that I could tell would be running the whole rest of the way and kept my eyes on her. I pushed and pushed, rounded the bend and saw the crowds getting THICKER which I knew meant finish line. Go go go and finally HIT THE MAT. And I KNEW i got in under 5 hours. Offical time 4:58:41. Got my medal, they handed me water, and my brain was seriously mush. I got with it for a second to get my picture taken but honestly, I'm sure I look freaky in that photo lol.
Found my aunt after about 10 minutes of walking on the streets (i didnt want her to park and try to find me) and then we attempted to get out of town. IT WAS CRAZY! So many detours without any signs helping you get OUT, it was just like a maze..where you go go go and think you are getting out just to hit a dead end of a road block. Seriously took forever to get out, and my legs were starting to lock up. Finally found our way and pulled into her house. I could BARELY get out of the car! It was painful. Hobbled inside and into the warm shower. It felt SO GOOD, I didnt want to get out! Then, we sat out in the warm sunshine and I put my legs in the cold pool. I was screamin in protest at first but eventually got used to it. Came in and ate a banana and although my stomach was growling, it was in knots and knew if i ate anything else, i would definitely throw up.
Rest of the afternoon/evening? I was a mess. Kept trying to get up and down walk around a bit but it was a mess. I'm sure i looked like the tin man! Made a sandwich around 4:30 and had to eat it SUPER slow bc of my stomach. Kept drinking that water, and then around 7 my aunt and i both had a beer. Let me tell you, MAN ALIVE that tasted SOOOOOOOO good. Watched "Legally Blonde" for a bit but my eyes were getting tired and I knew I needed to head home. Driving was tough, my legs were just sore and i wasnt comfortable. Got home, grabbed ice packs, advil and layed in bed. I felt like mush! Tried falling asleep many times but just wasnt comfy so took awhile.
This morning, had to wake up at 3 am (UGH!) for work and worked until 5pm. It was rough but only when I had to get up and down and while I was in the car it let my legs cramp up. It was also beyond sore when i first woke up but I was suprised I was doing as well as I was!
I am beyond thrilled with my time. My goal was 5 hrs 30 min and I beat that by 30 minutes. VERY PROUD.
Again, a HUGE THANK YOU to all of my supporters. I felt so much love from you all, and knew that some of you would be going online to check my time and that kept me going through the marathon..i wanted to make you all proud. I love you all and definitely have you guys to thank for helping me reach and go BEYOND my goals! THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!