Monday, October 15, 2012

Race Report: Nike Women's Marathon

Going in to the Nike Women's Marathon I was nervous.  My training had been sub par, at best.  The weekend before, I ran a 15 mile long run with the last 4 at MP, and hurt my knee so bad I couldn't walk normal until Friday.  Not exactly prime race week material right there.  Luckily Megan and I were doing the race for fun, and my intention was to do it as a long run for Dallas Marathon training.  Based on me and Megan's long run paces, I estimated that we would finish around 4:40-5:00 range.

We woke up crazy early and walked the 2-3 blocks to our race corral.  Megan's legit hotel planning FTW.

It took awhile to get to the start but pretty soon we were off!  And within a mile I already needed to use the restroom.  Thank goodness Megan was also on the "fun run marathon" page with me, or I would've felt terrible.  The hills were fast and furious almost from the get go after the first mile or two, and I found my knee hurting around mile 2.


Mile 2.

That... is not how you want a day in which you're running 26.2 miles to START.  We kept the pace nice and casual and tried to just take in the race and not focus on the pain.  Some hills we'd jog up, some we'd power walk, some we'd run, only to shuffle slowly down the other side to keep from hurting anything else.  We stopped and took pictures.  YAY.


It was a super humid day, but it was fairly cool out.  There was a nice hazy misty fog for the entire race.  So while I looked like a drown rat, I actually felt pretty comfy temperature wise.  I will say, thank goodness it wasn't a sunny day, because there was zero shade throughout the race course.  It could've been even more of a death march.  Whoof.


Lucky number 8!

I got to run along the ocean for the first time in my life, and it was so awesome.  I wish it had been a clearer day.  I'm super jealous of you Cali chicas who run along the ocean daily.


Around mile 12 I really started to struggle.  We were doing a run/walk combo, but every time we'd start running my knee would KILL.  The only thing that worked was to run excrutiatingly slow.  I knew that it was way slower than was comfortable for Megan, so I told her to go ahead.  She said no way.  We hit a water stop and she kept on trucking, thankfully.  No sense in being miserable with me.  :)

I crossed the halfway point in a PW half time, but knew the worst of the hills were behind me, and was thankful for that.  We started an out and back portion around mile 14 where we could see people finishing the full.  THAT. WAS. BRUTAL.  I love me a good out and back, especially in races where I have a bunch of friends running, because YAY friendly faces on the course, but when you can see people finishing and you still have 12 miles to go?  Eeew.

I strongly considered DNF'ing at the halfish mark.  I had never been in so much pain.  I kept thinking of how much money I had spent to do the race, and how badly Jenn had wanted to come and run with us, and knew that I couldn't DNF without feeling incredibly guilty.  Soldier on, I suppose.

I chitchatted with a lot of folks out there, especially during walk breaks to help the time pass.  I soaked up the gorgeous views and did anything to block out the pain.  I stopped to stretch my knee and hip to try to alleviate some of the pain.

I called Kyle around mile 20 or 21, wanting permission to quit the race.  He answered the phone and asked how the race went.  I told him I was on mile 20 or 21.  His response, "YOU'RE NOT DONE YET?!?!"

Dear Kyle,
you're not helping.
Sincerely pissed,

After talking to him and sniffling/crying, I came up to an aid station and asked for some pain killers.  Given my stomach issues, I'm super nervous to take a pain killer while running, but I felt it couldn't hurt.  Best decision I made all day.  I got a little bit of relief and was able to waddle through the remaining miles.  The last 4 miles were all along the ocean.  So gorgeous.

I finished the race and had never been so thankful to be done running.  I found the cutest tuxedoed gentleman out there and grabbed my little blue box.

Did it for the bling, obvs.

Megan did awesome and did NOT score a PW, so she clearly wins the day.  And she was able to find me super fast post-race.





Unknown said...

Congrats! I'm sure your personal worst was better than my personal best. Congrats on FINISHING!

Nicole @ Haute Runner said...

Congratulations on finishing a tough race! I do it for the bling also!

Dom and Trey said...

I don't blame you for taking medicine, I'd probably do the same. Nice finish and way to pull through. I can only imagine what was going on in your head. That internal struggle of quitting or finishing. I think you played it smart, by slowing down and toughing it out.