This past Saturday’s marathon attempt went both better and worse than expected..
I originally signed up for the race while bummed and sick, as a get-well-soon present to myself. It was only a month away at the time so already knew I wouldn’t be really racing. But after how my first full marathon turned out (lots of walking) I wanted a little confidence boost and to know I could at least run 26.2 miles straight, even if slowly.
I ended up staying sick for about two more weeks after that and managing to slightly pull something in my left leg during one of the like three runs I did get in before the marathon so as it got closer I wasn’t feeling very hopeful.
Marathon Eve my leg actually felt fine! But I ate something (didn’t eat anything new so no idea what happened) that didn’t sit well with me at all and went to bed early with an awful stomach ache.
The morning of the race I woke up at 5:30 AM before my alarm feeling pretty good! I might have woken up because my stomach was still gurgling a bit, but I felt like I won! I groggily checked my “what to wear” poll and threw on the super sweet outfit you guys picked out for me 😎 After a short drive I found out the original address I put into the gps was wrong and I almost freaked out as I have NO sense of direction and I don’t do well in “emergency” situations. Luckily I found the real address relatively easily and the actual lot just in time for the last shuttle 😬 Also luckily, I had picked up my packet the day before for once because it ended up being a run away shuttle (it got lost as roads it was traveling before started getting closed off for the race) and I ended up with another tiny chunk of my predicted time gone.
I’ve run this race multiple times before as the half so I thought I knew what to expect. Little did I know the lines for port-o-potties that are non-existent by the time the half is approaching are INSANE before the full. I stretched as I anxiously waited in line, now feeling less like a confident veteran and more like I was running my first race all over again. I ended up making it with some time to spare and lined up with the 4 hour pacer at the start line.
The gun went off and it was SO weird starting a race so slow and relaxed (8:58 min/mi), but it was just what I needed. I wasn’t feeling great, but I also wasn’t dying so maybe I could have kept going had I not found a friend at around the 4.5 mile mark and picked it up due to fun conversation. I stayed with her in the low 8’s chatting until somewhere in mile 8, when I started feeling really rough and dropped off. My stomach still felt really off and I think putting so much of my energy into trying not to be sick just sapped me because I started feeling insanely drained. I tried to eat my Honey Stingers chews I had in my belt to see if that would help, but actually couldn’t open them I was so weak 😅 and at that point I was in a gap with no one around (except half marathoners who had caught up and were ZOOMING past) to ask for help.
The last mile of the half I got a wicked weird feeling in my chest, like I almost couldn’t breathe and I kind of started assuming I wasn’t going to finish the full. I made myself pass the half finish line in a last effort to keep going and grabbed a banana they offered in hopes that some fuel was all I needed. I gave it almost another mile, but the banana was having no effect besides probably making me look absolutely terrifying, so I finally decided today wasn’t the day.
In the end I am glad I stopped as I felt completely miserable the rest of the day and just napped on and off, barely able to eat anything. I was still definitely sick and shouldn’t have pushed my body through the full. There’s always another race and I’m working on getting in some actual training for the Rhode Races Providence marathon May 6th!