Ahhh. Hi. I am sooo disappointed about today 😦 but, one thing that’s way worse than plain disappointment, is being disappointed in one’s self, and that I am not!
Today was very painful for me, literally. Nothing went as planned after about 6k, and I definitely don’t have the cushion of confidence I was hoping to be sitting on going into marathon training (tomorrow), but what can ya do? It was still a beautiful sunny day and an awesome crew always comes out for this event. I am glad I got to be there, regardless. Here’s how my morning went:
Had a decent sleep, got up, had the usual oatmeal and coffee, got ready and then went to set up my portion of the course with husband. Felt a tiny bit hungry between course set-up and heading to the race, so I ate a blueberry muffin. After talking with Coach Andrew, I realize this was probably the worst idea ever because of the sugar, but who really knows.
I felt great and did my very legit warm-up of a light jog, drills, stretches and a bit more easy running. The race began and I felt pretty good, though my breathing was not under control. This happens sometimes on this course since it starts on an incline, plus I was so excited, so I didn’t worry about it. Everything felt decent for the first 6k aside from the fact that I couldn’t seem to get my heart rate down, but at 7k I was like, fuck, I have to go to the bathroom. (I wasn’t like, fuck, I have to go pee…) Runners talk about poo all the time and if you don’t like it, this is not the blog for you. Having to go poo in a race is THE WORST. Especially when you already went at home!!!
I picked up the pace to give myself some time for the pit stop, was quick, and came back on to the course. It felt like my stomach was caved in like when you’re so hungry your belly button is touching your spine (LOL) and my energy took a dive. I knew a big downhill was coming, so I kept at it and told myself I’d regroup on the decline and get past this. As I continued to run my stomach went absolutely haywire and I had a really brutal stitch under the ribs on both sides and a stabbing pain in my lower left side.
Stomach cramping isn’t something I deal with often, but when I do it’s usually pretty minor and I know how to breathe through it and make it go away. Not today. Holy hell. I was in so much discomfort going down that hill that I actually got a bit scared. It kept getting worse and as I got closer to the halfway point where volunteers were I was considering my first DNF. DNF means “did not finish”.
Made it to half and stopped, and I was pretty sure I couldn’t keep going. I felt emotional about it, since the thought of not finishing a race made me really sad, and my throat closed right up and trying to breathe was really scary. Sorry for freaking anyone out and thanks for being so nice to me. After resting for a minute, I decided that it was okay to accept that what I wanted to do today was NOT happening, but dropping out was not okay with me.
Going back up that big hill I mentioned earlier (the course is an out-and-back) even really slowly, hurt so badly. I walked a lot and tried to stretch my sides but nothing was helping. It felt like I had the strength and posture of Monty Burns and like there were knives stabbing into my abdomen. I’m laughing really hard about this now because that description is perfect and really funny, but it wasn’t funny at the time. Once I got to the top, my friend and race director Kathy was at her spot manning an intersection and again I thought, this hurts so fucking badly and I can’t even breathe in all the way, I’ll just stay with her and cheer.
Then my very special friend, Kerrie, came up the hill and she said now was the chance to run together. It was her first time running the back half of the relay. I love this chick so much and she lifted my spirits. I love you Kerrie! AND I still kept thinking about how heartbroken I would feel if I didn’t finish the race. So I joined Kerrie and we plugged away at the remaining 8km together, I walked quite a few times but caught back up, and wondered if I had appendicitis. This also makes me laugh, but I was legitimately wondering that and having visions of an ambulance coming to get me.
I am so proud of Kerrie, she fucking owned her half of the relay and she pretty much saved my life. Sorry for fucking swearing so much. ahahahahahah
I said I was disappointed, but not disappointed in myself, and I mean it. Diarrhea attack and feeling like I was getting stabbed in the gut like Arya Stark got stabbed by the waif, that was terrible. Refusing to DNF when it very seriously crossed my mind two or three times, that makes me feel so much better about this shitty run. I physically could not run any more than I was, let alone any faster.
Tomorrow is a new day, and the official start of a huge adventure with Lifelong Endurance. Pump up the JAMmie, week 1, day 1. I can’t wait for the 10 miler at the Tenacious Ten in Seattle with my badass lady gang in two weeks, and for another shot at the half marathon on May 6th at BMO Vancouver. This is random but I find sometimes it helps to say really obvious things out loud so here are a few:
“I can’t change the way today unfolded, so I’ll move on.”
“I will not eat anything except oatmeal before a race, just in case that muffin was a contributing factor, and if I feel a little hungry, just be okay with it.”
“I still fucking love running and I know what I’m capable of.”
As I’ve said before, YODO. You only die once, and it wasn’t today. Congrats to everyone who had an awesome run! Many of my friends PR’d and placed! I am so proud of you all and I’m so glad we had a beautiful day and a very organized event!