here I am, trying to stay true to my word. i am almost 2 months late to recap my marathon experience.
so, I have decided, to cut the crap, bite the bullet and try and type this using my iphone. if you see some wacky word in here somewhere let’s just blame it on autocorrect, shall we?
I trained for 4 months for the marathon. I started on father’s day in June, and braved heat, wind, ran, injury and tears. but that’s what you pay the big bucks for with these things.
Chicago is my favorite city. Which says a lot since I have been to A LOT if cities. it’s part if my heritage, where I was born and home to the
worst best teams in major league sports. which reminds me, I decided to wear my cubs hat on my last training run to “test it out” before the race. seriously, how cute would that have been? to run through the streets of Chicago loud and proud to be a cubs fan. (because let’s face it, it’s is probably the only place where it is safe to be one.) well, good thing I tried it before the race. my head almost blew up from heat exhaustion. it was like my own little personal heat sauna where I easily could have lost water weight and about 1,729 brain cells.
so I decided to switch back to my old, faithful, yellow stained with sweat and tears 2008 human race hat.
seriously, it’s disgusting. but it’s my favorite.
after a run through of a packing list and necessities, we were on our way.
i made sure i grabbed all my “good luck” charms.
we met jasen’s parents in Chicago as the completion to my entourage. minus turtle and drama. (anyone?)
we arrived on Friday to give me a day to adjust to the time difference and check out the expo. I made myself get up early on Saturday to prepare. we stayed with jasen’s aunt gabrielle and uncle sig and felt right at home. jasen and I headed to the expo and were blown away by shear massive size. HUGE. I picked up my bib, shirt and stuff and we walked a little through the streets of the race.
after a delightful meal at sig and gab’s thanks to jasen’s mom, we were off to our hotel. when we got there we realized they sold our room and had to move us to another hotel.
on the night before the marathon.
we were told we had to be pack, check out and store our bags before we left for the race. you know, like at 6:00 am.
but, it’s nothing that a sprinkle’s cupcake couldn’t fix.
which it did.
in the morning I felt ready. I trained well and felt like I would PR. (set a personal record) I knew it. I was confident in it. I had it.
now granted, I am not a uber athlete. I am definitely not fast, but I knew I would do better than the CIM in December.
piece of cake. cupcake that is.
well, guess what? it turned to be really hot! and sticky. and humid.
after jasen and his parents drooped me off at the start, they took the L to meet me about 4 stops along the way. it is so wonderful to have this support! if you ever decide to take crazy pills and run a marathon, you need a support team along the race. it makes the difference.
after I settled in with 36,000 of my new friends, i waited for the start gun. the music was going, people were in good spirits, this is what we all trained for! then the start rang out. time to go! then I waited.
I waited (to move) for 22 minutes. and kinda by then, the excitement dwindles a little. and you start smelling weird things in this tight space.
ah, the memories.
needless to say, when I finally got going, I was so happy. what a rush. it felt like a blur. running through the streets were exciting. “these are my people!” I thought as looked at all the cubs and bears shirts and hats cheering us on.
i saw jasen and family at mile 4 and 11. here i am, looking happy, no?
you want to tell me what an amazing idea it was to run in a BLACK tank? how smart was i?
after mile 11 the heat started to really affect me. i noticed neighbors were busting out their garden hoses to cool us off and huge plastic swimming pools were filled with ice cold sponges. random spectators had huge coolers of ice they were passing out by cups. i just dumped it down my shirt and put it under my hat.
shoot. i didn’t care, yo.
so, about mile 14ish or so i had a little chat with myself. it went something like this.
“girl, it’s hot.”
“shhh, don’t think about that! you are in a pool, you are in a pool. and it’s snowing.”
“but i am hot. i should walk to cool down.”
“no! DON’T WALK! you will PR this race, you’re doing great.”
“no, i’m hot. if that old man starts to walk in front of me, i am walking too.”
“ok. how about this…you can walk at the aid station. stop if you need to. pour water over your head and down your front and back. won’t that feel nice?”
“fine. why am i doing this again?”
and there it was. as i passed each aid station, there were colored flags to let you know the “warnings” for heat. i slowly watched it creep from green to yellow to red. the more and more i tried to convince myself i wasn’t hot, the more and more hot i became.
i did the wise thing and slowed down and decided not to kill myself.
that was a good choice. i witnessed a few EMTs with stretchers and saw one person on the ground receiving medical help.
because of the crowds i had an accidental shove into a light pole. i felt pretty tough running with blood dripping down my arm. now, i proudly wear a tiny scar.
my recovery time was pretty quick, but i had some major chafing and very sunburned. yes a chafing sunburn is no laughing matter.
would i run another marathon?
sure. but maybe in like alaska.