That is really the only word I can find to describe how I’m feeling today.
As those of you who love me/follow the details of my life know, yesterday was the infamous half-marathon. It’s kind of crazy that it’s over and done with now. I’ve been training for over two months officially, and even before that I was getting myself into official training shape. So this has been a project over three months in the making. Plus when you figure my dailing training sessions took anywhere from half and hour to almost two hours to complete, not to mention all the time I spent talking about it (or at least thinking about it), the half-marathon has taken a lot of my time for quite some time now.
Anyway, it went pretty well. I was doing really well for the first seven miles. Around mile eight, I started to hit a wall and really slowed down. When I hit mile ten, the wall smacked me in the face. Then I had been running for a while, and I started to think maybe there just wasn’t a marker for mile 11, and maybe the next marker I saw would be for 12, which would be great because I knew I could last one more mile, when suddenly I saw that mile 11 marker around the bend. And let me tell you, when you think you only have one more mile to run, and you find out you have two (after already running more consecutive miles than you had ever run six months ago), you feel some heavy emotions. “Despair” would not be a complete exaggeration.
Fortunately, I really wanted to meet my goal of running then entire time. The only times I really stopped moving was when I hit a water station (I can’t run and drink from a dixie cup at the same time. Kudos to you if you have that magic ability.)
Other than that, I basically kept repeating, “don’t stop moving” to myself. Because I knew once I stopped to rest, that would be it. So I plodded along. And eventually I got through the wall, but I was still really ready to stop. My feet and ankles were hurting, and I was going rull slow. But then I heard someone behind me say, “Only a mile and a half, let’s GO!”
He wasn’t talking to me. He was talking to his daughter, who was running it with him. But it was just as encouraging to me.
Then I saw a sign that said the road was closed for the next half-mile, so I knew I only had that far to go. I started to perk up a bit.
Finally, I saw that big balloon arch. And the hubster was there cheering me on. And I knew I could make it.
I crossed the finish line at 2 hours, seven minutes, and one second, which was pretty much what I expected to do. (Sure, I would have loved to come in under two hours, but that’s what goals are for, right?) And I came in 455 out of 1,200, so the top third ain’t bad.
I have never felt so spent in my life. I walked a bit to try to keep my muscles from locking up, but then I basically collapsed in the grass with some water to wait for my friends Jessica and Heather to finish racing. They also had professional massage therapists on hand to stretch you out, which I took full advantage of.
The only weird thing was that I got SUPER nauseous twenty minutes later. I had eaten a bag of chips to try to get some salt in my system (something I read that can help prevent this), and I drank two bottles of water, but still, things were ugly for a bit. Does anyone have experience with that or know why it happens?
Anyway, nausea aside, I was pretty happy with myself. I stuck with my goal and reached it. I’d like to do one every year, and while I still have the goal of doing a full marathon in the next few years, this experience showed me I’m not quite ready for the full 26.2 miles yet. (Plus I am so sore today that the thought of running ever again is being put on hold for at least a week. Oof.)
Also, today is our six-month wedding anniversary! Not that we’re really celebrating it or anything, but it’s still kind of exciting. I can’t believe how fast the first half-year went. Love you, bub!
Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go buy stock in ibuprofen to get me through this day.