Race 26

Houston Marathon – January 15, 2012

Well-the day had arrived. January 15, 2012 will always be a day for me to remember. It was the day that I was to accomplish a goal I had set for myself all year! It was the day of my marathon!!!
There aren’t a lot of people who really understand why runners run- -especially why they would want to run a marathon! 26.2 miles people ask? YES! :) Someone once said, “If you run a marathon, you can do anything.” I wish I wrote down who said that—it really impacted me that day.

I started on my path about 1 ½ years ago when I ran my 1st 5k. Then I had to run a 10k. Since then, I have run an 11.1k, a 12k, a ½ marathon and now my first full.

I had won the entry to this marathon by writing a story on “Why I Run.” If any of you know me, you know I thrive on challenges and getting free stuff. :) I’m not really sure why! LOL.

I decided to stay at the very nice hotel in Downtown Houston, where the starting line was literally 2 minutes outside the door. I’m always nervous when it comes to races—especially the bigger ones. They mentioned that if we were not in our corral by 6:40 am., they were closing the gates. So—even though I live about 40 min from there and could probably have just driven at 5 a.m. , I decided to play it safe. :) (Plus—I was able to stay in a nice hotel to boot! :))

The night before, I had a great date night w/ my sweetheart who took me to IHOP where I carbed up! I have learned so many little things along this journey—how to eat, what to wear, what to do to your feet the night before the race, and so on.

It reminds me a lot about our life—do a little each day and learn a little each day and you will progress.

So—I was able to pick up my packet and was honored to be in the Hero line, because I was representing a charity that paid fro my entry. Talk about cool…It just hit me…I’m going to run my marathon tomorrow!!! :)

So, I went to bed at a decent time at 9:30 p.m. However, I was so anxious, I didn’t really sleep very well!!! You runners out there know what I’m talking about!! :)

Ok…5:45 am…..it’s time to get up!! Again…it hit me..I AM RUNNING A MARATHON TODAY!!!

Mile 1—yeah!! Only 25.2 more miles to go I thought! :) hahahaa Mile 6.2…can’t believe that a 10k used to be so hard. :)

I took pics of a few of the markers as I passed by them. I felt really good the first 9 miles surprisingly. I was making really good time. I was privileged to run with a good buddy of mine, Michael Caeg. He has run a few marathons and was helping me and coaching me along. I normally don’t like to run with people, but I appreciated him and I think that is what got me through!

Mile 13—Woohoo!! ½ way done! I can do this! :)

About mile 18, I saw my family. What a trip!! They were all there with signs and were cheering me on. That is where I needed it the most! I started feeling a bit tired at this time. I definitely slowed down my pace from the first 13 miles.

Mile 21….starting feeling some cramping in my quad. More Gu and lots of water and Gatorade. In fact, I took every Gatorade and water stop that was on the course. I didn’t want to get dehydrated—that was for sure.

Loved all the spectators cheering us on at certain markers. Sometimes you just need a smile or a funny sign to keep you going! There was one sign that said, “Keep running..the person behind you just passed gas!” hahhaha That definitely made me laugh… and want to keep running! :)

Mile 23—starting to REALLY feel tired…..I went to running 3 min and walking 1 min at this point…

Mile 24.5…My sister is texting me! :) telling me—“You can do it!” I loved the support I got from my family.

Mile 25.5….I could hear my sister cheering for me and calling my name…this really gave me the push to keep on going…

She said I didn’t look tired, but honestly…my quad was aching and all my body started reeeealllly getting tired. Only a few to go… Mile 26….My sister and her daughters are running with me encouraging me on the other side of the fence… lol I LOVED IT!

Then, I see the rest of my family. Time to pick up the pace!! Pretend like I’ve been running like that the whole time!! ;) Here come my little kiddos and grandbabies..that’s what I told Stan I
wanted—some of my kids to run the last 100 yards with me!!

FINISH LINE! I see it…just a little bit more! I DID IT!!!! WOW!! Did I really I thought? :)

My friend puts my medal on me….I am sooo proud! Still to this day, I can’t believe I did it. I’m still pinching myself! This will be a day I will always remember! I set a goal and I accomplished it. It was not easy—not training, nor during the race. However—I DID IT. :)

I feel like I can conquer anything in life for real! It really is true what someone said…”If you can run a marathon, you can do anything.” Message me when you find out who said that so I can thank them. :) I feel like I can do so many more things in my life because of this adventure. Not everyone understand that…but runners know what I mean! :) I’m not sure if I will attempt another full….but you never know!!! :)

January 15, 2012…I will always remember this day!! Onward I go!! What to do next/? :) For now, I’m just enjoying the 26.2 sticker I am able to proudly put above my 13.1 sticker and drive around like I can conquer the world! :) Onward and upward!! Until the next race…