Yesterday, I finished my fourth marathon, the Ogden Marathon. I still can’t believe I did it because my training had been all over the map and I had only done a 14 miler for my long run – and that was six weeks ago! (and yeah, don’t think I’ve already heard the argument “Why would you run a marathon anyway?) So I was a little worried about my performance and endurance factor. But then I thought, “Hmmm, I could consider it a training run…and where else would I have water out for me, food available along the course, and I get a medal at the end??” 🙂
So I did it. And like my other three that I’ve completed, I could hardly stand sleeping the night before. I was nervous about finishing, I was anxious over my hamstring that’s been bothering me, and it was also going to be the first full marathon I’ve ran since tearing my MCL. Yeah…I was just slightly a ball of nerves when I loaded onto that school bus at 4:45 a.m. and took the 1/2 hour ride up the canyon. But once I was at the top, I ran into my good friends, Logan and Pete. They are my good running buddies – Logan is more my pace and Pete runs crazy 2:45 marathon times. We look for each other at all these races and sometimes go on training runs here and there. This is Logan and me just minutes before the race started:
And yes, he did wear that hat the whole race long. He’s a crazy guy but he’s got a heart of gold. If you notice our layers (and my pic at the top) you’ll see that it was freezing cold at the start! I had two sweatshirts on and pants and still was shaking, huddled around a fire and trying not to die from smoke inhalation. That’s always a good way to start a long run – breathe in a bunch of smoke to ready your lungs for 26.2 miles of pure pleasure.
I ran the first half of marathon with Logan and then I ran the last 5 miles with April. It was so nice to enjoy those last few miles with her, chatting about life and counting down the mileage. “Yay! We only have 2 miles to go!” We spurred each other on and crossed the finish line arm in arm.
I was really looking forward to coming home after the marathon and crashing for a few hours. That’s an ideal situation for any marathoner – just ask ’em. However, it just so happened that my son’s last soccer games were changed from the 24th to the 17th. Oh joy. And we’re talking a tournament in Sandy that could last upwards of 5 hours if they kept on winning. Fantastic. I got home, was able to enjoy my post-race favorite meal of strawberries, a pear, and Orangina, took a quick 1/2 hour power nap, and then was headed out the door. Three hours of soccer and niece’s birthday party later, I was finally back at home just after 8 p.m. where I barely made it to my bed before passing out. Man, what fun, eh? You can obviously see the appeal that comes out of beating your body for 26 miles. Funny thing is, it really is addicting. The pic below is me with my friend Rebecca after we had just completed our first marathon, the 2006 Salt Lake Marathon. We happened to run into each other (no pun intended) at the finish line and neither of us could stop smiling. If you’ve ever thought about running this distance, DO IT. Believe me, it’s a sense of accomplishment that is hard to describe and the experience is something you will never forget.