Wednesday, December 5, 2007

26.2 take one

Alright, folks, the much awaited commentary on the insanity that was this weekend. Running a marathon has been a goal of mine for a little while...knowing now the hard work, effort, time and exhaustion (physical, emotional and mental) it takes to train for one of these things may have deterred me from starting to train. But, now knowing the feeling of overcoming so many obstacles and pushing myself harder than i ever have before makes it all so worth it.

I was pretty on edge Saturday morning...I was kind of emotionally overwhelmed and I was definitely taking it out on Ryan. I'm pretty sure he was wondering what he was thinking when he asked me to marry him. hmmm... We drove up to Sacramento where we met up with Julia and Jona (soooo good to see them, by the way). Leah was so scared for me this weekend that she actually peed on Julia when she first saw her (really, she did...so embarassing). When everyone else arrived, we went to a delicious dinner (albeit not the best for carbloading - sorry julia), we all headed back to the hotel for a good night's rest. i didn't fall asleep until about 12:30...it wasn't restless and i wasn't scared. i just didn't sleep. hmm...

at 5:30 am, we were dressed and ready to go. we dropped off leah at jeff and sarah's hotel (thanks, guys!) and ryan drove julia, jona and i to the starting line. chilly, but not as cold as expected...bonus. we met up with molly and kaylynn - our fellow marathoners - and paul and ed - the first leg relayers. paul and ed had were definitely entertainment for the first 5.9 miles...as were the townsfolk who had seriously just rolled out of their beds to cheer us on from their driveways. by the end of the first leg, molly passed us up and kaylynn was just ahead of us, but ryan joined us for leg 2. how great to see his bright, smiling face...even though he HATES running, HATES getting up early and was wearing the world's ugliest sweatshirt. he was constant throughout the next 7.8 miles and really kept julia and i going. brook was the other leg 2 relayer, but he was running just ahead of us with kaylynn.

brook and ryan...see...i told you his sweatshirt was ugly



we passed the half marathon point about 10 minutes faster than we ran the nike half just over a month ago...i was feelin' pretty good! leg 3 brought rebecca's bright smile, fresh legs and wonderful stories. that girl knows how to keep you going. poor julia hit a bit of a rough spot about half way through. through tears, she turned to me and said, "how horrible would it be on a scale of 1 to 10 if i just stopped right now?" um...no...not an option. she had to take a pitstop at the port-a-potties and told rebecca and i to keep on going. um...no...not an option. we walked for a little while and then stopped on the side of the road until she caught up to us. i think she really thought we were going to leave her behind! after this little mid-race-crisis, the julia we all know and love was back...and i mean really back. the girl had so much energy!

ryan, paul, brook, rebecca, lindsey, liz and sarah...
the relayers...minus ed
i was doing better than i expected. it was so great to dash past the huge flags indicating another mile of our insanity was behind us. 17, 18, 19, 20, 21...sarah joined us for the last leg and she was a hoot. she pretends she's a novice, but she kept me going for sure. at mile 23 we took our last gu and julia said we were running from here on out...no stopping at all. i was 1) very glad she said that because i probably would still be running the marathon right now had she not and 2) going to kill her for prohibiting any stops...i was TIRED!
the girls
i can honestly say i was doing just great until about mile 24. i think i was just mentally done by that point. my legs were on auto pilot. my feet were numb. we could see the 25 mile flag ahead of us and everyone got so exited...to me, it just looked way too far away. around mile 25, rebecca, lindsey (the other 3rd relayer) and liz (the other 4th relayer) joined us. they had way too much energy for me. we ran past the hotel and i really thought, "okay, guys, i'll see ya later...i'm just going to go up to the room now." you would think i should have been happy when i saw the marker for mile 26, but i wasn't. i thought, "there is no way in hades i can go another step, let alone .2 miles." I never thought .2 miles was very much, but when it's tagged onto the end of 26, it seems like eternity. we turned a corner and saw brook, kaylynn, paul, ed and brad. i don't remember much. my legs kept moving and julia, sarah and i turned the last corner. the finish line was in sight...legs still on auto pilot. then i heard this great big, "YEAH MAREN!!!" Ryan was cheering with jeff and jack (and leah sleeping peacefully in her stroller). and then it was over. i could NOT believe it. tears started to seep out of my eyes...and i have no idea why. elation? exhaustion? i'm still not sure...
A goal completed.
jona, julia, kaylynn, maren, molly - the marathoners
And only because there were so many people to help support and encourage me along the way. Including, but not limited to: Kelli, Morgan, Amber, Crystal and Danielle - some of my earliest running partners. Mom - my first and most memorable race partner. Ryan - my everything. Leah - this one's for her. Ed, Paul, Ryan, Brook, Rebecca, Lindsey, Sarah and Liz - the relayers. Molly, Jona and Kaylynn - the marathoners...and Julia. This girl didn't complain a bit when I could only run 2 miles last April. She slowed her pace to keep me company through 8, 10, 12, 14 and 16 mile runs (and every run inbetween). She encouraged me through 2 half marathons and she kept me alive during the last 2.2 miles this weekend. She has this indescribable aura about her that makes you feel like you really can do anything, and for that, i am grateful. 26.2 completed.

17 comments:

rachel said...

What an accomplishment. Maren, I am so impressed. Good work! I hope you slept well the night after the marathon :)

The Wades said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Wades said...

you made me cry at work! you little ..... what a great post, a great weekend, a great race. here's to our next one and next one and next one! (sorry, ryan!) tell leah no worries about the pee thing. i think she did it out of excitement to see me.

and just so everyone else knows, while i cried and complained during the first half of this marathon, maren though struggling, kept a smile on her face. no complaining from this one. you are great, mare.

Nate, Morgan and Asher said...

maren, i am so proud of you. it sounds like you did way better than me! i wish i had my own personal julia with me those last 2 miles to tell me no stopping, as the last 2 miles took us something ridiculous like 30 or 40 minutes...seriously! they were brutal! i know so much what you mean about that last .2 miles....the WORST!! at that point, i had pretty much lost every care in the world except for the one that meant stopping.

that's funny about the crying, i totally thought i would have cried as well, as i did on several long runs, out of happiness, or something, and then at about mile 22 or 23 when i started to realize that i was actually going to finish, i started to tear up, but then i couldn't breath, so i had to stop. but no tears at the end. i think i was so mad at the dumb last 2 miles to be emotional! but i teared up reading this, does that count?!

way to go Maren!! thanks for inspiring me! hopefully we can do one together someday!

R & K said...

Way to go Mare! You're my hero! All this and it hasn't even been one measly year since you gave birth!

ashley said...

You are inspiring for such a great accomplishment, and with Leah still so young! And I teared up reading your race re-cap...

Way to go, Maren!

Lant Family said...

Great job Maren. What a huge accomplishment. I can't even imagine running that long and still being alive. That is awesome.

Kyle said...

Very cool Maren. Regardless of how many you end up running, I'm sure that one will stick with you for awhile. Well done!

B, C, & D said...

YOU ARE AWESOME!!! Congrats to you!!

Love,
Carolee, Bryce and Danika

Karen Hauley said...

Shmaven, what can I say? You are inspiriation personified. Thanks for sharing your journey - it's an accomplishment that you will reach back to many times through the years to come, when things get tough. This event will let you know that you can get through, even when you want to quit. I lug you, you know.

Aaron and Michelle said...

Way to go Maren! What an accomplishment!!!

The Marshalls said...

yeah for me being an early running partner!!!! i need you close by to get me to like running again. and believe you me, i breathe now when i run!!! good job!!!!!! loved the post!

chloe elizabeth said...

I could read people's marathon posts all day long.

You are rad!

The Marshalls said...

hey.. who are the corbetts.. is that lindsay tucker?? i can't figure it out and it's driving me INSANE!

Karen Hauley said...

shmave,
I couldn't resist sending this quote I "ran" across . . .
"There is no chance, no destiny, no fate, that can hinder or control the firm resolve of a determined soul."
---Ella Wheeler Wilcox

It seemed appropriate.

The Wades said...

i am putting that on my quote of the week, hope that's ok karen and maren!! :)

Rob and Marseille said...

I am so impressed that you can list miles 18-21 like that. Good job on completing your goal!