Tuesday, June 15, 2010

The Teton Dam Marathon

Half Marathon for me!  2 hours, 14 minutes 39.6 seconds. 32 minutes behind the first runner.  I averaged a 10 minute 16 second mile. 

Friday night I was so antsy.  I ate a giant plate of spaghetti, 2 slices of garlic toast, 5 meatballs and a big glass of milk.  It's been a long time since I've ate that much and felt that full!

I made a running play list for my iPod.  And went to bed around 9:30 which is early for me.

Woke up at 5:50 a.m.to the wind screaming outside my house.  20-30 mph.  I was immediately filled with dread for how the run was going to go.  I was planning on wearing shorts and changed my mind to capri's, a tank top and then a long sleeved shirt over that.

I pumped, made breakfast: hash browns, kielbasa (mmmmm...), eggs and toast.  Jaren and I ran around the house looking for safety pins to pin my number to my shirt.  We managed to scrounge up three.

I left at 7:00 a.m.  The Half Marathon started at 7:30.  There was a lot of people there(377).  I was surprised at all the different ages.  Teenagers, 30 something Mom's, 20 something college girls, 40 or 50 something men.  I thought it was awesome.

When it first started I felt a little claustrophobic.  I didn't like that I had a hard time setting my own pace with people in my way in front of me, people passing me, bumping shoulders.  And it was that way for the first 3 miles.  Ironically, the first 3 or 4 were the hardest for me.  I had never trained on hills and the entire first 8 miles was a constant steady incline and some steepish hills.  

Right away I regretted wearing the capri's.  The wind wasn't blowing as bad around town as it was out at my house.  And within the first 15 minutes I got hot.  Around mile 4 I pulled up my pants so they were up past my knees and that cooled me off a lot.  Then at mile 5 I took off my long sleeved shirt and tied it around my waist.  All while running!  I had to undo my iPod and put it back on.

It was around that 5th mile that I started to feel good.  At the 6th mile I ate my gel and got it on my fingers.  I kept trying to lick my fingers and wipe them on my shirt so they wouldn't be sticky.  It was annoying.

At mile 7 I had a banana and somewhere during that 7th mile into my 8th mile I felt amazing.  I couldn't believe what a difference half a banana and that gel made!  The hills didn't bother me and I was passing people every few minutes.  My pace picked up and I got excited.  I think being out in the country and not having so many people around me made a difference, too.

The course leveled out and started to do some down hills around mile 9.  That was nice.  Nice that they put that at the end because it was quite the spirit lifter.  Not that I needed much - I was flying.  I felt so good.  So happy.

I had another half of a banana at mile 11 and it was around mile 10 I thought I needed to pee.  But I was so close and didn't want to add to my time so I just kept going.

There was one point that I was running down hill a little and looked up and saw the sand dunes, the Junipers, the beautiful blue sky and thought about all of the blessings in my life and felt so grateful.  Grateful for this experience because I was actually enjoying myself.  I was almost done with a huge accomplishment - something I had wanted to do for such a long time.  I smiled at every volunteer I think.  :)

The last mile and a half to two miles were totally downhill and I almost sprinted those.  I just picked up momentum and kept going! 

I had told Jaren to take pictures of me crossing the finish.  I also told him he didn't need to be there till 10 because I was sure I couldn't run it in under 2 1/2 hours.

I looked for him and didn't find him.  I was sad, but still happy and in a good mood because of what I had just done.  I found a friend and he let me borrow his cell phone and I called him - that's when I saw the time.  9:50!  I had ran it in under 2 1/2 hours!!  Jaren was just getting into town.   He felt bad.  I'm saddened that I finished such a monumental thing for myself and no one was there.  But I understand.  How were we to know I would be that fast?  I've never ran a race before.  He promised next time he'd get there an hour and a half before we think I'd be in :)  There was a professional photographer out on the course and I think at the finish line.  They will post pictures online and I'm hoping there are some of me on there.  I'll buy them.  They are priceless to me.
This was the first picture he took when he saw me.  I'm in the pink.

Random Thoughts
  • I think it was during the 7th mile that there was a clump of grass rolling across the road and I caught a glimpse around my feet and jumped because I thought it was a mouse.  I felt a little silly and laughed.  I wondered what the people behind me thought. 
  • I also had a wedgie for 9 miles.  I didn't want to pick it because there were so many people behind me!  Then at that ninth mile I was far enough ahead of the people behind me that I didn't care anymore.  I can't believe it took me 9 miles.
  • After I took my long sleeved shirt off I remembered I didn't shave my armpits.  I hoped no one noticed.  Such a silly thought, I really don't think anyone did.
  • Around mile 8 or 9 we ran past some of Jaren's fields up on the hill and I wished there was someone to say, "Those are my husbands fields.  Those are potatoes poking through and that is his grain."  But I didn't.  So I just looked and smiled. (anyone seeing me smiling so often probably thought I was a weirdie)
  • Two of the four times I drank water from a cup when I passed the stations I choked on it.  I didn't want to stop running so I tried to drink while running and I ended up splashing it on my face and inhaling it.  So then I would cough and cough and feel silly. 
  • When you pick up your water you just toss your cup when your done with it.  The volunteers pick it up after wards.  But each time I tossed my cup I felt guilty for littering.  Even though I guess I really wasn't.
  • There was a lady with a visor who had candy taped to it.  I wondered if she would notice if I casually picked the small Hershey bar off of it.

Oh yeah! My feet!  They started bugging me at around mile 8 (I took three ibuprofen), but didn't really start to hurt bad until the down hill.  All that pounding took it's toll.  And now my left foot is killing me and my right feels okay.  So weird.

My legs are so so so very sore.  But everything else (except my feet) feels fine!

In the end I am so happy I did it.  So happy I just bit the bullet and signed up for the half.  Because I did it and I felt good (after the first 3-4 miles) and I was SO incredibly happy while running it.  I am so proud of myself for setting a goal and reaching it.  So impressed with myself for keeping a 10 minute mile pace and not stopping (except for the 2 seconds or less to peel my banana and throw it in the garbage(the one thing that would decompose I took the time to throw in the trash... ugh).

The thought of running a full scares the bajeebees out of me.  But the thought of running a half did, too.  So, who knows?  I would consider it a huge huge life accomplishment if I ran a full.  We'll just have to see!

Yay for me!  Naomi was especially excited I got a metal.


Tiffany Fackrell said...

that is SO AWESOME! Did you place, is that why you got the medal?

Sara Ann said...

Wow! I am very impressed. You should totally do a full marathon. I did one when I was 19, awesome experience, there is nothing like it! The top of Utah marathon in Logan is all down hill and a good one to start with, plus it is easier to get into then St. George, which is the one I did (also a really great one if you can get in, my dad has done it like 8 or 10 times, I can't remember). Again, awesome, good job:)

Ashley said...

Congrats that is so awesome! And you look great. I hope your feet get feeling better.

Alexis Treese said...

Oh my gosh! Ive been wondering how it went. You did fantastic. I dont think I could accomplish that, Your hard work paid off! Way to go!!

Victoria Gilbert said...

Yay Whit! Such a great accomplishment! Very cool.
And I LOVE the picture where Naomi is eating your metal..... yummy :)