May the wind stay at my back and may angels give me wings to fly.

I started avidly running in April of 2007, 8 weeks after my little boy was born. I was only running about 15 miles a week just to lose baby weight but a friend of mine was thinking of running the Honolulu Marathon. I made the bold move of doing it with her with the simple goal of just to finish. I finished my first marathon in 2008 with a time of 5:13. In 2009 I started running more miles, up to 40 a week when my schedule would allow that much. I signed up for my second Honolulu marathon and finished with a time of 4:48. That was with only 6 weeks of training, two of them being taper weeks. I finished with tears of joy and one other thing, the strong desire to run every runner's dream...BOSTON! I have some real good days and some real bad days but I hope someone finds inspiration in my spirit and strength. If you dig deep enough you will find the strength to do whatever your heart desires. "Don't follow your dreams...CHASE THEM!"

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

My second marathon

After suffering from a groin injury for the first 6 weeks of my marathon training and then downed again due to a miscarriage I had only 6 weeks to train before the marathon on December 13th, 2009. A friend from Dailymile, Mickey Woolard, offered to coach me to get me to my marathon that I was oh so determined to run! Through him I learned a little more about my nutrition, my running technique and habits, etc. I have to say, I have never ran better and I am constantly reaching new goals and hitting better paces. I was still having rough patches during those 6 weeks, I did 3 long runs, well, 4 if you count the one I snuck in two weeks before the marathon... My speed naturally increased from a 10:30 pace to a 9:30 pace after my first marathon and now I'm even faster after my second. So here is my success story, may you find some inspiration...

I was alone this year, my friend injured her knee and can no longer run long distances. I was excited but nervous because I knew I didn't have the training that I really needed. The marathon was on a Sunday but I woke up the Friday before with a sinus infection and took mucinex for two days to get rid of it. Little did I realize the problem this would pose for me on race day. My plan was to do the run/walk/run method with a 3:1 ratio but run fast, well, fast for me that is. I had my gel packs, I had my sustained energy and HEED mixes with me to carry me through. Mentally I was ready and physically only partially. Well, I stuck to my plan and ran at a pace between 8:30-9 and walked my walk breaks as fast as I could. I was doing great and feeling great...up until mile 8. Mile 7 I stopped for a fast bathroom break and then hit Diamond Head at mile 8. This year the weather was beautiful so it was no issue getting up and over this time. After I got over Diamond Head, it hit me like a brick wall...dehydration! The mucinex dehydrated my body regardless of how much I hydrated myself two days before. I started to get nervous and a little weak. I wanted water and a lot of it! I couldn't even handle my drink mix anymore so I stopped drinking that altogether and I was only able to get down on gel pack. At mile 11 I really started to wonder if I was going to be able to finish and for me to think that meant my situation was pretty shakey. I am not a quiter by any means. Thus began my mental games just to get to each aid station to guzzle water, about 2 16 oz glasses full each time I stopped. After mile 13 I thought, "ok, I'm halfway there, keep going, I can do this". I also started texting my coach on my 1 minute walk sessions. Short and to the point words though! I made it to mile 15 and knew that the backtrack portion was just 2 miles away so I kept going and kept running for water. This whole time since mile 9 my pace had slowed to a 10 min mile. Mile 17, backtracking now and my mind knew it and I used it. My pace quickened to a 9:30. Mile 19 I saw a struggling runner and stopped for about 4 minutes to help her stretch it out. At this point Mickey was texting me back encouraging me and sending prayers my way. I looked at my garmin and noticed my time and miles left and realized that I could still beat my first marathon time. I seemed to get a renewed sense of energy and my pace quickened to a 9 min mile and I was now passing people. Every now and then tears started filling my eyes because I knew a PR was within my reach. Mile 22 I still at a 9 min mile. Mile 24 was Diamond Head but this time it was alllllll mine! For the first time ever I maintained my pace running uphill! Again, tears, again, more texting to Mickey and my friend who was waiting for me at the finish. Mile 25 my knees started to ache from pain and it was hard to get back to pace but I was now pacing a 8:30 min mile but almost crying. I was still on target for a sub 5 marathon and I kept pushing with all I had. Mile 26 got harder on my knees because it was also downhill but I refused to walk anymore and just prayed to God to pick me up and carry me to that finish line. And so he did, at a 8 min mile pace and 25 minutes faster than my first marathon. I was ecstatic! I just ran my heart out and had never felt better in my entire life! Other than the birth of my two children, that was my greatest accomplishment!
That next week I was still on my runner's high and I was running again at a 9 min mile pace on Tuesday.

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