Sunday, May 31, 2009

My Marathon



It was tough. I was slow... even slower that I had hoped to be. But I finished it and still had a big smile on my face!

My chip time was 6:44:32. See? I told you I was slow.

I felt like I was doing great until about mile eight. I felt OK until about mile 13. After that, I hit that wall everyone talks about.

I think there were a few contributing factors in play by that time:
  • An annoying and painful blister had developed on the big toe of my right foot.
  • My left heel started hurting pretty badly.
  • I mistakenly thought there were going to be GU packs available around mile 14 so I didn't ration very well. As a result, I ran out of gel packs. The GU station was at mile 17 or 18.
  • My hydration belt kept riding up on my waist and that bugs me.
There were many, many positives about the race:
  • The whole thing was very well-organized.
  • The volunteers were awesome!
  • The weather was overcast and drizzly... perfect.
  • It was a fun race with lots of positive energy.
  • Some of the neighborhoods had residents passing out water, treats, oranges, and even beer! Some guy gave me a handful of Peanut M&Ms... and I told him that I love him.
I'm a little disappointed about my time. I was feeling positive enough during the first half to think I might finish in under 6 hours. When I started having to walk more than I could run, I knew that wasn't going to happen.

To keep the disappointment at bay during the race, I kept reminding myself that a few short weeks ago I was contemplating dropping out of the race due to my injuries. I had to remind myself that I have not been able to do much running in order to train properly due to my knee issues... then the heel trouble.

So... to sum it all up , I consider it a blessing that I was able to participate in the race at all! I am grateful I was able to finish it... much better runners than myself have had to drop out of their own marathons due to injuries or illness. It was fun and I feel proud of myself for having done it. I do not plan on doing any more marathons, though. For me, half marathons seem to be more compatible with my running style, life, training, and health.

Pictures of the Finish

I was SO glad to see that finish line!

What's up with the thumbs?
I don't know... too many
Happy Days episodes when I was little, maybe.
I was in love with The Fonz.

With my free post-race beer.
The big concert was put on by the English Beat.

But Wait- That's Not All!
I plan on posting more about the race tomorrow... including some observations, some of the amazing people I saw, and my favorite water station (which was at around mile 10... which happens to be the mile I dedicated to Patrick at My New Life on the Run).

Again, I'd like to thank all of you for cheering me on!! You rock, Bloggers!!


Anonymous said...

Congratulations on your finish. Great job and keep running.

EricaH said...

Congrats on finishing I haven't even worked up the nerve to think about running a marathon yet, so kuddos to you. and very cute outfit may I add. Great race report and pics. :) So do you think you'll run another one??

Melanie Tait (Mel Tries to Run) said...

Sara - you are the bomb! Congratulations! You finished and... with a smile on your face! Well done. I sent you an FB message too - am desperately hoping you'll come on my radio program and tell us all about your first marathon :)

Dan said...

Finishing any long distance race is an accomplishment no matter what the finish clock reads. Congrats!

Oz Runner said...

don't focus on the time, focus on the fact that you finished and you should be very proud...way to go.

joyRuN said...


You did AWESOME in spite of your recent injuries :)

Lisa Slow-n-Steady said...

Congratulations. 26.4 miles is a loooong way to go no matter what your finish time is. Well done!

Glenn Jones said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Glenn Jones said...

Congratulations on finishing Sara! You had the right attitude about not worrying about time - but to concentrate on finishing. So many first timers get caught worrying about their time and end up slow and miserable and not having a good time.

26.2 is a long way!

Anonymous said...

Congratulations, Sara. You did super. And I can't believe you even have smile on your face and a beer even though you hit the wall;-)

Sarah Jane said...

Congratulations!! What an amazing accomplishment. You ROCK! Can't wait to hear the details!

Nyght said...

Wow, you look AMAZING at the finish - (even after 5 miles I look like death on a stick)! Congratulations on such a fantastic accomplishment!!!

RunningLaur said...

Congratulations! You're now a marathoner - no matter how long it takes, it's still a big acomplishment. Congrats!!

Irene said...

If it wasn't for this marathon we probably wouldn't have met!

Still, you did it, you finished it, and you have a rockin' new piece of hardware to show for it! Woohoo!

We were at that concert, sitting near those yellow mats and stability balls!

The Happy Runner said...

Congratulations, marathoner!!! You did it -- way to go!!!!

Love your pics :-)

Patrick said...

Sara!!! That is awesome-

Good job-- You should be very very proud of yourself--- FORGET the time-- The important thing is you finished-- even pushing yourself when you wanted to quit!

P.S. thanks for the dedication of mile 10!!! That made my day.

I can't wait to hear about the people you met along the way!

Mel -Tall Mom on the Run said... FINISHED!! With Blisters and a bum knee.. CONGRATS!! You look sooo cute in all of your photos. Will have to chat with you about the BIG race, there will be 25,000 people at my race and I am nervous.. Was there really a guy with a lobster hat?

How fun that you might be on Melani'e radio show, WOWZERS!!

PROUD OF YOU!! Can't wait for more photos and stories.. FYI the word verification for this comment is "Talest" which if you add an "L" is "Tallest" how funny is that?

OK I am a dork.. BYE!!

tfh said...

CONGRATULATIONS! I'm so excited because I remember just how uncertain it was that you would even be able to able to finish. Good for you for running smart, for taking care of your body, and for crossing that finish line! I can't wait for you to post more about the race-- it must have been an incredible and tough experience. How is your left heel feeling now?

AKA Alice said...

I know I left my congrats all over your FB page...but here it is again...CONGRATS! CONGRATS! CONGRATS! So awesome that you kept a positive attitude about finishing (and you did) and with a smile on your face.

We'll run a 1/2 Mary soon. AFC is in Auuuuuuguuuust!!!!!

robison52 said...

Congrats on finishing your first marathon...remember your first marathon is a learning experience with no regards on now know what to expect and have a time to beat for your next marathon.

Southbay Girl said...

Awesome job!!! You finished! That in itself is a huge accomplishment!! Always remember that! There were some elite runners who had to drop out-so you did GREAT!!!!!

Mel-2nd Chances said...

I'm so proud of you!!! Congrats on finishing! You're a marathoner! :D Well done, hope you're starting to recover a little!!

MCM Mama said...

Yay!!! You did it!! Great job finishing the marathon, especially with all you've had going on!

Bob D said...

Awesome! I know you had some challenges going in, so glad to hear you decided to hang in there and got it done. Congratulations!

Marci said...

Congratulations on your first marathon! Great pictures!

X-Country2 said...

You did it! You finished a MARATHON! Great pics, and I love your UA top. :o)

Mel -Tall Mom on the Run said...

Sure finish your marathon then drop off the Blogy world. LOL.. So you were on Mel's program? How cool is that??

Brian said...

Great job Sara! I too had a disappointing (time wise) first marathon, but it has been a motivating factor in my running and life ever since. The fact that you kept going for so long after hitting the wall will help you immensely in the you now know what you're preparing for. I look forward to reading about your future races.

RunnerDude said...

Hey Sarah! I am so proud of you and your accomplishment! Don't worry about the time. You've got many more marathons in you to focus on time. Just relish in your great achievement. Like you've said never thought you'd ever even say you were a runner and now look, you're a marathoner! Congrats!!!!!

BumbleBeeRunning said...

Congrats! Really, it doesn't matter that you didn't finish in under 6 hours- just that you finished. Hope you are super proud of yourself for such a great accomplishment!

Fair Weather Runner said...

WHOO-HOO! Awesome job and way to keep running. Congrats, you are amazing. You have number one under your belt!! and i wasn't happy with my marathon time either, but oz is right, focus on the fact that you finished, because it is an amazing feat to finish a marathon.

RunToFinish said...

aw great picks! I am so proud of you, for such an awesome attitude!!