Monday, January 28, 2008

Race Report Part 1

Okay, I've decided I have to break this down in parts or it will never get done. I'm to the point where I'm excited to blog about other things, so I want to be sure I get all of my excitement for Disney in before I get too far off course.

But first, my brother B has also started a blog here. He has already signed up for the Oklahoma City half marathon at the end of April (which I will be running with him. My SIL will be doing the 5k that day too.) I'll talk more about him and why he's going to do the half in the second part of the report.

Okay, first of all, when I left my home to go to Florida on Thursday things were just not good with the hubby but I knew God is always with me and most of my family would be waiting for me in Florida to give me strength. I was pretty tired when I got to the hotel, but when I saw all the happiness of my family - my Mom, my Dad, my little sister, my older siblings, my nephew - I cheered up. I decided that I had all the support I needed right there with me.

We took it fairly easy on Thursday because Friday was the day to hit the park. We got up very early and got to the park for breakfast with characters from Whinnie the Pooh. Who doesn't want to eat breakfast with Eeyore? We went immediately to Space Mountain after breakfast. Probably not the best idea, but I seem to be the only one who didn't like it. In the end we went on it three times (though my sister M's grand total was 5 I think.) We walked around a lot that day, but the legs felt good. I made sure I packed three pairs of sneakers so my feet wouldn't get too tired.

On Saturday everyone went to breakfast together and then we went our separate ways. I was off to the Expo by myself so I could pick up my packet. As I was waiting for the bus I kept seeing runners coming back red and sweaty and with some pretty cool medals around their necks. They were the half marathoners. It was so great to be there. When we arrived at the Wide World of Sports complex, it was so cool just to be walking around with all these other runners who were excited about the same thing I was excited about. I got pretty overwhelmed. I found my line for packet pickup (which happened to be the shortest line) and waited. I just looked around and tried not to ball.

I got my packet and looked at the chip and that for some reason made me start crying. The chip is what made it really official for me. That's what would keep track of me as I ran this thing I had been working so hard for. I went into the stadium seats and called my sister because I was just balling. It took so long to get to the actual point of running a marathon and so much has happened that I couldn't believe I was this close.

After I calmed down, I went and walked around the Expo. I had two things that I needed to get - Body Glide and some Gel. I know, two things I really should have brought with me, but well, there's no place in my town that sells body glide and the only gel I could find in my town was strawberry banana flavor -GROSS! I found the Body Glide, but everyone was out of the gel and they weren't going to get any in. I did get some Cliff Shot Blocks, which I had never had before, so it made me nervous, but not much I could have done at that point.

As I walked around, I found a booth that had Bondi Bands! My BRF Nancy swears by these things, so I got one. Since it was Disney I got one with a pirate skull and cross-bones on it (and as a shout out to my SIL who wanted to be there with us but couldn't - we love pirates). Arrrr Matey!!! Plus, I thought it would make me think of all the encouragement that my BRF's have given me over the past months. In all honesty, I can see why Nancy loves these things. They are awesome! They didn't get sweaty and I never felt annoyed with it like I can get with hats or bandanas.

After my purchases I walked around some more and saw a ton of cool running gear. I pretty much wanted to buy it all, but I resisted the urge. I got my bondi band and that was enough for now.

I went back to the hotel and took it easy for the rest of the day. I pretty much hung out with my mom laughing and joking and drinking a ton of water. I think my mom was nervous that I had an infection because I peed about 375 times that day because I knew I wanted to be plenty hydrated the next day.

I did go through some mental meltdown trying to get the outfit together. I had pretty much brought two of everything and then had to decide which sports bra, t-shirt, shorts and shoes to wear. The only thing I was sure of were my socks.

The two pairs of shoes I had were very different. See, I had purchased a new pair about a week before the race. I know. Naughty me. But my old shoes were pretty worn out and so I bought the new pair to do my final training runs in. I really only ran in them two times before going to Florida. So my question was, which is better? Running 26.2 miles in shoes that are totally worn out, but that have served me well, or run in an almost brand new pair that may not be broken in enough, but that will probably hold up better over the miles? I ran in the new ones, but I went back and forth over it for a long time.

Then I stressed out trying to figure out in which order I put my non-clothing items on in. Does Body Glide go over or under sunscreen and deodorant? I mean, now these questions seem pretty ridiculous, but I pondered them for a long time that day.

Happily my family was there to calm me down. One thing that probably drove them crazy was that I just randomly shouted out, "oh crap, 26.2 miles!" during the whole weekend. It's just a wierd thing to psych yourself up for. Fortunately they always had great comebacks for me to calm me down when they saw I was freaking out.

We all got back together in the afternoon after my brother (who had just returned from his belated honeymoon in New Zealand on Thursday night) arrived at the hotel. We all got together to go eat an early supper. After that, some of us went back to the hotel for early bed because we knew we were going to need the rest for an early start the next day!

Part 2 coming soon.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Bits and pieces

Okay, I know I still need to do the race report. I'm working on it here and there so that I can get it posted but the days just don't seem to be long enough. So I'm going to be posting a bit out of order.

When I ran Disney most of my family was there. It was so great to have them all there to share the experience with me. It was great (especially after mile 22) to have M and B meet me as I ran through MGM (now Disney Hollywood Studios ) and Epcot.

The really great part, however, is that all of my siblings are now excited and want to do Disney next year. We are all overweight and diabetes runs in our family. I'm so happy that we are all trying to get healthy. My two older sisters have signed up for their first 5k together next weekend, and my brother has signed up for a half marathon in 4 months (well, closer to 3) in Oklahoma City that I'll be running with him.

My sister P has just started her own blog here. She has the next year planned out to increase gradually and work her way up to Disney 09. She is a cancer survivor and has been working hard to get healthy. She's amazing and strong but hates running. Well, that's what she says now, but give her a few months and I know she'll be singing a different tune. Who wouldn't love running!!! She's going to get fitted for her shoes this weekend and I'm so proud of her that she's going to do this with us!

Okay, I'll try to get the race report done this weekend, but I'm still dealing with pretty difficult stuff and I want the race report to be complete, so I'll get it in when I can. Thanks for being so patient with me!

Oh, and I did my first post-marathon run the other day and it was awesome. Short, but it felt great to be back out there again. I was worried I wouldn't want to run again, but now that the rest of the family is starting I have to keep up the momentum. Yay!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Goal 26.2 = Accomplished

I will write a full race report later, but I DID IT!!! I start crying every time I think about it. It was an amazing experience and I'm ready to sign up for next year. I have a lot of room for improvement.

There was a team that was wearing shirts that said:
Dead Last Finish beats Did Not Finish which trumps Did Not Start.

That's exactly how I felt. Just getting to the starting line was a huge deal. Actually, when I went to the expo and picked up my bib I started crying because I couldn't believe I had made it that far. Basically I was a big cry baby the whole weekend because each part just overwhelmed me. This is something that I have dreamed of for a long time.

Thanks be to God who gave me strong legs and a good pair of running shoes. Thanks to all my family who was there to cheer me on, or who were at home tracking my progress or were waiting for the call to hear that I finished. Thanks to all my BRF's who have been so encouraging along the way. You were all with me on my run.

I'll write again later, but WOW! I can now say I'm a marathoner.

Wednesday, January 9, 2008


I'm very sorry that I have not posted in a long time. I try not to air my frustrations on-line since it's so public, but basically I've been going through a very rough time with my hubby. I won't go into detail, but it's kept me from doing a lot of things that I've wanted to.

I haven't been running nearly as much as I needed to as a result of the crap I've been dealing with, but I'm still going to Disney. I was talking to my sister M the other day and I said I don't care if it takes me the whole 7 hours, I just want to cross the finish line. She told me that just getting to the starting line was a big enough accomplishment for her. So, you know what, I don't think that's setting my standards too low. This is something I've wanted to do for a long time and just making it happen is enough.

I know I've missed out on a lot the past two months and I'm trying to pick up the pieces and figure out the next step of my life. The Disney Marathon is this weekend and even if I walk it I'm still going to do it. I'd like to say to all my BRF's who have supported me all along, thank you. I've missed you guys and I look forward to catching up with you. You have all been amazing support and I probably should have been better about updating on everything, but I've had enough dealing with other things that I'm far behind with everything.

I'm excited that I'm going to be spending a lot of time with my family this weekend, it's exactly what I need. I can't wait to see you all at Disney!

I'll update again as soon as I can. Thanks!