Well, this was not the marathon I was wanting this year at all BUT, I am very grateful to have finished it. After having a great summer of training towards a Boston qual, I ended up with plantar fasciitis and then a nasty lower back muscle spasm. Both of which knocked me out of the streets for about10 weeks leaving me 5 weeks to prepare for my 26.6 mile quest. My mileage was cut down drastically to one run a week then a long run on the weekend. I managed to squeeze in one 20 mile run on Thanksgiving weekend very successfully and with no problems. Two weeks before race day I had mentally come to terms that a finish was what I needed to focus on, not speed, for now. I had my strategy and was hoping for at least a 4:30 finish.
I woke up today at 2am and was at the race site by 4am and took my time making bathroom stops, stretching, and relaxing before line up time. The weather turned out for the best for us today too. The rain cleared and the roads were dry and the sun looked beautiful coming up by Diamond Head. I told myself to just enjoy the race and nothing else. I started running and had absolutely no pain in my heel for the first 11 miles but then it started. I kept pace as long as I could stopping only at aid stations to drink and walk through them. Mile 13 I had Bon Jovi blaring "halfway there..." Ha! Unfortunately the firey pain started to get worse in my foot and I found myself having to walk more frequently but still managing pace. Mile 15-16 it became even worse and my left leg and foot were now taking the slack and they started to feel pain. At that point I just kept telling myself that I will not quit. If I can walk then I can finish. So I had to think of something to ease my pains so I started motivating others and at times that provoked me to run again. My foot collapsed on me about 3 times the last 7 miles so I sat for a minute then got up and continued on. Tears were flowing for a couple reasons, pain, not having a finish that I wanted, and that finish being my worst one. However, it still did not defeat my spirit and the last half mile I literally gimped my way to the finish but tried to cover it up as much as possible, lol!
The marathon spirit was strong with me today as I ran. It is my last marathon here in Hawaii but all three have been an amazing experience.
Now it is time to put my running shoes away for 2-3 months to let my PF heal then it will be time to start working on that Boston qual again. I have my eyes set on 3 marathons next year if time allows for me. They are all part of the Rock n' Roll series, San Diego, LA, and Vegas! This year just was not my time for a BQ and I've accepted that. So with much needed healing time I will come back strong and continue my quest for a shot at Boston.
To my Dailymile friends, thank you for believing in me even when I didn't believe in myself. Mickey, thank you for standing by me and my decision to run and being a great coach all along the way. To my friends here in Hawaii, thank you for supporting me and believing in me as well.
God Bless and here's to recovery!