Sunday, October 13, 2013

race day is over, but the fight continues...

Baltimore Marathon was yesterday... I'm too sore today to be experiencing the post-marathon let down, but I know it is coming. In a day or too I will start feeling blue. Lonely for my teammates, and missing the weekly runs with friends. Also missing having that goal to work towards...

But the fight to find a cure for blood cancers, and to improve the lives of people living with blood cancers, continues. For this reason, my fundraising site will remain open for a few more week. If I have inspired you at all with my tales of training and suffering, blood, sweat and tears (oh, yes... there were tears on the course yesterday)... please think about making a donation to further our cause.

As you may be aware, the region has been rain-soaked for about a week now. But miraculously, the rain let up for the duration of the Baltimore Running Festival yesterday. Woke up to grey skies and light sprinkles, but no deluge... thank goodness.

The race started later than any I've ever done before, so I had time to eat breakfast and chat with the coaches and teammates before heading over to the start line. I was not in the queue for the portajohns when the race started (as I was a few weeks before in Philadelphia!!!)

And in spite of having had a couple weeks of feeling a bit run down, oh and having an ear and throat infection... I was feeling pretty good.

So good, in fact, that I powered up the first 3 miles of hills without even thinking about it... So good that coming into the 13.1 mile mark I realized I had just beaten my half marathon PR by 2 minutes... So good that I made the mistake of eating one of the half bananas they were handing out on the course.

And then things all went downhill around mile 15. The banana did not sit well, and I was nauseated for the remaining 11 miles. Still managed to reach the 20 mile mark with a marathon PR on the horizon. But for the final six miles I struggled. Everything hurt. Nothing tasted good and nothing sat well in my stomach, so I was not taking in the calories I needed.

When I came across Coach Jack, and told him I thought a PR was still possible... he ran me in. He pushed to me pick up the pace. He chose running targets for us to catch and surpass. He encouraged me to make myself throw up just to get past the nausea... and when I hit that point where I realized I just couldn't sustain a pace that would get me to my PR goal, he was supportive anyway.

I missed my best race time by just 6 minutes.... But it would probably have been a lot more if it weren't for Jack.

I'm so grateful for the support of my coaches and my team.  And proud of what we have accomplished as a team this season.

I hurt today... but I'm so glad I decided to join TNT once more, in the race to find a cure.

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