Our minds are so powerful it is truly amazing. Sometimes I do worry that my mind is so powerful that it somehow tells my body it is perfectly ok when its not? The only reason I say this is because the shit I have been able to do not only after this spinal fusion but back tracking back to the end of 2009 when I had the 3 micro fractures on my left knee then going for a year and a half with doctors telling me I would need a new knee if I would start running again...remember back then I also had only done a couple marathons!
Kelly and Clyde arrived friday afternoon so we got to spend the day together. They came bearing hydration and nutrition so that I would be able to give 100% at the run on Saturday! ha..... I love these little airplane size bottles of booze....you just can't find them in Portsmouth Ohio like you can in Texas! They are perfect size to fit right in the little holders of a fuel belt....I think maybe those places were meant for gels but I think these work out best!
Race morning we got up early, Heather and Jackie drove to my house and Clyde and Kelly followed us since they would be heading back towards Texas after the run. I think the weeks leading up to this I was most excited one to see Clyde and Kelly and two the baked goods from Millers Bakery after the event!! CREAM HORNS and HOMEMADE PRETZELS.....those are the two items I was dreaming about. They have so many other things too that will make you drool a little as you walk back and forth while you debate on what to get but my mind was set on just those items. I have really been watching my food intake to get this weight off that I have gained during this whole spine ordeal. Trying not to worry too much about the number on the scale which is hard but how things fit and Im not into some clothes that I want to be into.
We got to the race with plenty of time to visit and had a maniac/fanatic/50 staters photo before hand. The race started about 15 minutes late due to some issues but I don't think anyone had a problem with it. Kelly and Jackie were working an aid station near the half way part of each loop. Heather and I got started and the weather was cloudy to start with chances of rain and temps about 60...so perfect running weather!!! Im not sure how far into the run it started but a light misty rain came and pretty much stayed all day. Sometimes it was heavier then others but no downpour. When we got to Kelly and Jackie I told Heather we were half way to the half way if we were going to do the full....I was feeling really good, only issues is the hamstring and upper glute/hip pinch on that right side which like I have said I feel all the time. I still didnt care if I would drop to the half, I was just out having fun and listening to my body. One thing about this course is it is very pretty scenery with all the horses we pass and hilly but not many guardrails to pop up your leg to stretch - I kept saying I wanted to do that at the next opportunity but that opportunity never really came.
After loop one I was still feeling really good and we just decided to keep on trucking and see how things go......Clyde was ahead of us by about a mile or so, so when we he hit the turn around and we were coming back to the turn around we passed each other. Later he told me that he could see it in my eyes that I was feeling great and that I was going to do the full marathon. He was right!!!
During the second loop I decided to turn on my iPhone an play some music over the speaker and sing to entertain us. A gal from Maryland that had come to run a 20 mile training run but decided she may as well just do the full ran into us. She stayed with us for the course entertainment on and off for about 8 or so miles. She was training for NYC marathon in November and is also planning on Vegas Half mid November.....I may have talked her into signing up for that full instead :-)...............
We finished with a time of 6:08 which honestly for that course being hilly isn't that bad. I can't believe I ran/walked the full and felt amazing! I had doubts about doing the Full at Vegas because they have a 5 hour time limit but they do allow those to move to the sidewalk to finish in 6 hours but I have never seen them allow anything more then 6 hours. Any given day I can run 6 hour marathons or for that matter a 5 hour cut off doesnt make me nervous but not any given day after 2 spinal surgeries and one major one and not running a marathon since January 11th so this is why I had doubt for Vegas....I no longer have that doubt at all.....that course will not have the hills this one did ( i like hills) so I should be able to finish it in under 6 hours easily. Im not going to push it and just go out and have fun but I WILL beat the cut off but I also will listen to my body....if I feel any pain while running then I also have no problem dropping to the half. Vegas is an evening run which will be different but Kid Rock will be playing an hour beforehand for us so that will be motivating!
I still don't think I have wrapped my mind around being able to finish with no issues what so ever.....even the next day I didnt feel like I ran 26.2 miles?? I do know that I felt at home again with all the runners and seeing some friends I haven't seen in awhile.