"We must all suffer one of two things: the pain of discipline or the pain of regret or disappointment" - Jim Rohn
...for me today, it was the pain of discipline.
Yesterday morning, Husband went downtown to get our packets. I *heart* the brown long sleeve t-shirt that we got. It's totally my color.
I agonized last night over the weather forcast. Yesterday it was pretty nice...80deg when we spent the afternoon at Wilson Stadium watching the 5A schools compete in Pageant of the Bands. It was hard to believe that the weather forcast for today could come true. But when I woke up in the morning and heard the wind howling, I knew that they were right...a cold front/storm had moved in.
I decided to wear my favorite running shorts underneath a pair of capri length athletic pants and a sleeveless shirt underneath a long sleeve one with the thumb hole thing, no gloves. Also my yellow hat. Stepped outside to test my attire in the crisp morning air, and it seemed okay. I loaded up my fuel belt with Accelerade and 3 gels. Used a race belt for my number, and strapped my Garmin on my wrist.
We arrived at the race venue early enough to search the crowd for familiar faces and watch the full Marathon start, but it was a good 5 degrees cooler downtown that it had been at home and the wind had picked up. We ended up taking cover inside a building instead. At 15mins before the scheduled start, we braved the cold air and made our way to the start line.
The race started pretty much on time. I was happy about that. I started my Garmin when the gun went off, not when we crossed the mat. I'm not sure if they used the start mat or gun time as official time. I noted that it took about 48 seconds for us to get to the start mat, in case that matters.
OFF AND RUNNING
My Garmin made a weird beeeeep. I looked down. Lost satellite connection...something about hitting enter...so I did. Maybe I shouldn't have? My Garmin was basically just a watch for the rest of the race, so I was blind to my pace. Drat!! Guess we're just gonna' run on feel today.
Took our first walk break after the 1st aid station (mile 2?). By then I was feeling fairly comfortable, not cold anymore.
Took our next walk break after the 3rd aid station (mile 4?). I took a little extra time to take a gel and take off my long sleeve shirt and tie it around my waist. I was feeling pretty good, but had no idea what pace we were doing.
We stopped for walk breaks at the next two aid stations (miles 5, 6?). The aid stations offered water and gatorade. Sometimes I took water, other times I just used it as a reminder to drink some of my accelerade.
I hit the lap button on my Garmin at the turn point, and looked at the elapsed time for the first time: 1:15:45. I was convinced that was better than my half-point time at Chips-n-Salsa. I was happy and smiled. I looked up and noticed a race photographer. It will be interesting to see how that photo turned out (assuming they took one).
I started paying attention to elapsed time on my watch at the next several mile markers.
17 minutes later, we had gone another 1.5 miles. I tried doing the math in my head and figured that we were running something under 12 min/mile up to this point.
I started hitting the lap button at every mile marker. The next two miles were 12:38, 12:13.
I was getting warm. I told husband that I wanted to stop at the next mile marker to take off my pants so I could just run in shorts. I also needed another gel. With an extra long walk break, that next mile clocked in at 13:29.
Then I don't really know what happened. My ankles started to hurt. My lower back started to hurt. My knees started to hurt. My hips started to hurt. I hadn't had any pain up to this point and suddenly everything seemed to hurt. Every step sent pain shooting through my body. It hurt so much, I was fighting back tears. To add insult to injury, the wind picked back up. Noticing that I no longer had a happy face, Husband suggested another walk break. That seemed like a good idea. I put my long sleeve shirt back on. It seemed like everyone passed me while I hobbled and limp/walked. 13:30 min later, another mile was behind us.
I noticed a woman with a really cute running skirt who also happened to be walking. I shouted "hey, cute running skirt!" to her. She smiled and said "thanks"
Volunteers tried to be helpful and were telling us "One mile to go"...then "a half mile to go." I shouted "That's too far! I'm so done with running!!" The cute skirt lady came up beside me and said "Come on, you can do it. You're almost there."
That last half mile took forever. Cute skirt lady started counting down the blocks. Husband was a few steps ahead and kept looking back to make sure I was still moving forward.
And then finally we were done.
IMMEDIATE AFTER THOUGHTS
I'm blessed - I'm extremely grateful that Husband ran this with me today. Having him there with me this morning was awesome.
It's a wash - On Friday, I told Cindy that I'd either run this one faster or slower than Chips-n-Salsa and either way was okay with me. Instead, it was almost exactly the same! According to my watch, I ended up finishing a mere 15secs faster than my last half-marathon. It will be interesting to see what the official time is.
I hurt...a lot - I'm happy to have finished, but my body hurts all over. The aches and pains in my joints/low back make me wonder if this distance is simply more than my body can safely handle. I remain in awe of all of you who are somehow able to run farther distances.
I think I need a break - I don't have anthing else on my race calendar right now, and I really don't know what I want to do next. Nothing's jumping out at me. I think I'll take some time to figure it out.