Saturday, November 23, 2013

Naperville Marathon Race Recap

Two weeks ago I ran the Naperville Marathon. It was my 6th marathon, and it wasn't my worst time or my best time. Like any marathon, it was a long time.

I have found running a marathon is a lot like childbirth. There is a some amnesia, which allows you to do it again, and there are things that stick in your memory. Here are some things that will stick from the Naperville Marathon:

  • Bobbi and Dave drove me down which reduced my stress. In looking for parking we circled a parking lot with a porta potty. Score. I went to the bathroom before even parking. I also went again before the race. Double score. Runner's dream.
Second Potty Stop

  • I couldn't get up to my pace group. I started with the 5:30 pacers and passed the 5:00 pacer at Mile 2.
Me, Kim (who rocked it PR style), Bobbi and Dave

  • At the start of the race a guy was holding up a sign that said "Don't Sh*t Yourself" (* mine). I laughed out loud. I've run long enough that it's always a possibility
  • At Mile 6 I saw the man down with cardiac arrest and there were many people around him. The ambulance was not there yet. A gal in front of me waved to a friend half a mile ahead saying "I called 911." That's her marathon memory.
  • I saw Bobbi, Dave, Stacy and Ryan along the course. Spectators help make a marathon. Bobbi had my hat with a visor. I switched out my hat; it was so sunny. I gave her my jacket. It was in between warmth for the rest of the race. I kept my gloves and took them on and off all race because of the wind. I hate wind.
  • Around Mile 11, I accepted a full bottle of water from someone and downed it. My tummy felt weird. I was either dehydrated or overhydrated.
  • There was a hill at Mile 13. I played Katy Perry's "Roar" three times. I like hills. Boom.
  • I hate wind. Here's why. I push against it AND it makes me cold. The course was pretty open and although it was less windy than the previous day it was still windy.
  • At Mile 14 I saw Bobbi and Dave and I put on a pretty face.
  • I have trained on trails. The Naperville trails are much harder packed than the DPRT or Rollins. My calves hurt.
  • After Mile 14 I passed Dan who had passed me at the beginning. He looked like he was having a hard time. The second part of the trail chewed me up and spit me out. It evidently chewed up others too.
  • At Mile 18 my legs were tired and hurt. I expected this in the 20's. This was the beginning of R-angry.
  • As I was coming toward the end of the trail I thought the spectators were cheering for me. They were cheering for the 5:00 hour pacer behind me. That does not feel good. Double bummer. Wrong cheer. I did not want to be behind the 5:00 pacer.
  • The 5:00 pacer was awesome. We ran about 10 minutes and walked a bit. Their running pace was faster than mine. Their walking pace was much faster than mine. I could only keep up with them until Mile 24.
  • With tears in my eyes I let the 5:00 pacer go. I ran/walked and then at Mile 25 I kept true to my first marathon mentor Yvonne's words. "We run the last mile." I sucked it up and moved forward.
  • There was a steep hill at Mile 26, and my family was also there. Pride comes before the fall. I kicked that hill's butt, and then it kicked mine.
  • When I turned the corner to the finish I saw on the clock that I was over 5 hours. Seriously R-angry. (5:01:24)
Home stretch & they totally passed me before the finish

  • The curb after getting the medal and before the food tent was my hardest hill. The volunteer said it was the last hill I had to do. Ouucchh.
  • There was so much food I could barely carry it. The Italian Beef smelled so good. I wasn't hungry. That is a first. I am normally so hungry after a race. I had a Muscle Milk and waited for my appetite to come back.
  • At the stretching tent, my children hovered around me eating my snacks. The stretches hurt, but it felt great when I got up. There were cracker crumbs all over my bench.
  • I was back on Mom duty as soon as we started back to the car. Bobbi offered me a duty free car ride back repeatedly but I declined. I took a kid to the bathroom on the way to the car. I made 6-7 PB&Js in the car on the way home.
  • I ate my Italian beef about an hour after the race. It was the best. Seriously fantastic. Even better than the Red Robin we had later that night. I've discovered the secret to good tasting food; be hungry.
Looking over these, most of the first half has been forgotten, and it is the second half that sticks in my memory - when the pain, fatigue and eventual triumph come into play. I love Steve Prefontaine's quote "Don't let fatigue make a coward out of you."

Grit gets it done

Nice job Naperville on your Inaugural Marathon. I could do without the wind. I hate wind. I've gotten over my R-anger and have forgotten enough to look forward to marathon 7 sometime next year. I will keep you posted.

1 comment:

  1. I love the style of your race recap! I feel like I was there for the mile by mile highlights! Congrats on the race! I wish I could have seen you more or cheered you in. I am sorry I was not there!

    Good point about the packed trails. I was thinking that too. In fact, I thought "this is what the lake county trails feel like after the winter!" It was hard. But that first prairie was my favorite part of the trail! :)