I have always wanted to do this race…it’s practically in my back yard, so goal times aside, this was a huge bucket list thing for me to check off my list! I had just done Providence 2 weeks ago, and finished in 2:20, so I had this crazy thought that maybe I could finish seconds faster and fall below the 2:20 mark. I did T25 all last week, including a double day on Wednesday and Thursday so I could have a rest day on Friday. This, my friends, was probably my biggest mistake. I did (2) hour-long workouts, which are both leg-intense, just days before my race.
I woke up on Saturday morning and I knew I was in trouble…it still hurt to sit down to pee from all that squatting earlier in the week. No big deal I thought, I’ll be fine, just a little extra stretching, right?
My legs were feeling heavy, but I was trying to think positive thoughts leading up to the start. I was super stoked to wear my new long-sleeved hoodie from Strong Confident YOU (not only is the saying super cute, but the material is so soft and comfy, perfect for fall running weather!).
I got lined up and ready to go, although the whole pre-race experience for me was quite hectic.
As the gun went off, it was a bit of a cattle push to get to the start. As soon as I crossed that timing strip though, I went out strong, starting around a 9 minute mile (whoa, too fast!) and quickly realized that my running apps had both skipped WAY ahead, and were showing that I was about 1 mile further than I was. This screwed up my pacing and timing for the rest of the race L
I tried to just focus on my body, where I felt comfortable at, and finding a pack of runners I felt I could keep pace with pretty well.
By mile 4, I knew I was in for a struggle; both of my hips were hurting pretty badly at this point. I’ve had problems with my right hip before, but never my left, and this time it was both at once, radiating around to my lower back, shooting down my legs, causing serious discomfort. Nevertheless, I pushed through, thinking it would pass eventually. I got some cramps around mile 5 which I haven’t had any issues with in training, so I wasn’t really sure how to fix it..a friend once told me if you “swallow air” it helps, so I tried that for a bit, and they did seem to go away.
At the halfway mark, I was on pace to finish right around 2:20, and I got a bit of a second wind. As bad as I was feeling, I was still on pace to finish this race with an awesome time! I picked up the pace a little knowing I’d be losing energy soon and I’d have to make up for that lost time....that and I saw this AWESOME sign that I didn't get a chance to snap a picture of, so here's one I found on the internet:
(in this case it said 1/2 marathon, but same difference, right!?)
Flash forward to mile 9, and my hips are SCREAMING at me to stop. I’m almost in tears they hurt so bad. I passed a friend cheering me on around mile 9.5, and I’m not sure why, but after I saw her I gave myself permission to take a walk break at the next water stop. At mile 10, I walked through the water station, and found that my hips felt much better after that quick break, so I got back on my way and started running again. But that relief was short lived, and the pain got even more intense, to the point where I HAD to stop. I probably ended up taking 5-6 breaks to walk and stretch out my hips as best I could. I knew at that point I wasn’t going to PR, so I was just focused on finishing strong, and running through that finish line.
I finished the race in 2:26:47.
Not my best time, not my worst. Still something to be proud of, but I still feel like I could do better. I could barely walk the rest of the day, and with loads of painkillers, spent most of the weekend on the couch recuperating. I went for a long walk yesterday, and today I’m still feeling sore but decided it was time to get back in the saddle, and got back to T25. I’m still pretty sore, and my lower back is bothering me so I’ll be taking it a little easier this week, but I know I have to keep moving.
I think I’m done with long races for now anyways, I need to really focus on my weight loss again…I think I’m the only person out there that runs 13.1 miles and GAINS five pounds L
How was your weekend?