The night before the race, I was really nervous. Thankfully, unlike the Spartan Races, I knew where I had to go. I knew how far I had to run. I also had a goal of doing it under five hours.
We got to Brianne Parent’s house and ate Pizza for dinner. Probably not the best thing to do but whatever I knew I needed a lot of carbs. I was very quiet throughout the night which always seems to be blatant evidence that I am nervous or something is wrong. There was a lot of stress involved with the race and helping Dennis/Bri with their housewarming party added to it. They were under a lot of stress and rightfully so. I felt bad going to sleep around ten for the race but Brianne ordered me to do so and that they would be fine getting the rest of the stuff together.
I awoke around 4:30 hell bent to make this the best day possible and achieve something that a lot of people even myself didn’t think was ever possible. Writer’s note: I am in firm belief now after 27 years of living that you can do anything you want if you put your mind to it. I wasn’t able to get a chance to eat breakfast due to the race being so early and the race was an hour away with evil Long Island Traffic. I got to the venue around 6 am and it was 39 degrees out, this is not the most ideal temp I was hoping for but I am glad it was not in the 80’s. I went to registration and they didn’t have me on the registration, so that stressed me out a little bit. I really just wanted to get there and put myself in a mind-frame of nothingness is the best way to describe it.
As the time towards the race continue to shrink, my stomach became more nervous, my brain began telling me how is the hell are you going to do this sir? The countoff went and we started running. The sun has just begun to rise and we were running towards it. It was amazing seeing the sun hit the water and casting its light onto your face. At mile 5, we passed the clock. Being that it was on a boardwalk at Rockaway beach, we had to do the course mulitple times so there were three times that we passed the clock. At mile 13, I passed the clock at 2:08 which was awesome because that is a really good time and I put myself at pace to get the marathon done at my goal time. At mile 18, I passed the clock again and saw that I was at 3 hours which again I was impressing myself. At mile 20, I have never felt such immense pain in my life but the famous marathon running WALL hit me like a ton of BRICKS. My legs felt like they were trying to get out quick drying cement. My hands became swollen enough that I thought I was becoming a blowfish. I passed away the time laughing at myself that I was going to get to mile 26, 365 yards away from the finish line and just blow up into pieces. I will say that humor has gotten me through an incredible amout of pain through all of my races. At mile 20 was when I had just started to walk/run too. It took me 3 hours to walk/run 8 miles. I was incredibly annoyed at my time but thankful that I was able to basically crawl my way to the finish line. The more I think about it, the more that I agree with it that the entire race is more mental than it is physical and that becomes more evident during the later part of the course. There were numerous points in the race that I wanted to give up but I was able to counteract it by being postive, staying focused and realizing that I was already hurting. It also helped that I didn’t want to go to my best friend house and tell them that I gave up.
I don’t know if more training would have been better or if due to the lack of no crowds, my inexperienece, four water stops (just water and gatorade, no gels, no food, no bars, no bananas) I really will put it into a cumlmation of all of these things but put it squarely on the lack of carbs available at the race.
I am also happy that after I was done the race that I was able to drink beer and lots of it. Also, it was great to have people at the party congratulate me on the race and asked how I was still standing, drinking, socializing, not in a hospital bed and partying. There were also a lot of comments on how good I looked and that was great to hear as well. It makes the journey more pleasant and easier to go through which is important to put yourself around a group of people that are positive towards the actions that you are doing. Pain was not even a word I can describe that I was in during the race or that I am still in while writing this. It hurts to walk, I have the worst chub rub that takes up the entire side of my right thigh that will take at least a week to get back to normal from the race. My skin is sensitive and my eyes are dried from the dehydration still. What is funny is how I used my legs to run the marathon yet my entire body hurts including my neck. I have also got the runner’s retained water factor going on. I weighed myself before the race and I just weighed myself this morning, I have gained 13 pounds. I got so scared, I immediately googled to see what was going on and saw many forums of runners that this has happened to.
I am still overwhelmed with emotions that I was able to do this and I think that next year I will be doing it again at a major city so I can experience the great stuff, the crowds and maybe even used it as a travel excuse.
As far as what is next on my list to accomplish, I am really not sure. I want to do the Ironman TRI next year, I have a lot of work to get started on if I want to do this. I do know that my goal is to lose tweleve pounds before Thanksgiving through crossfit and running sprints-fartlek. I will not be doing any more distance runs until next year.
I will continue to preach this if you will but no matter what happens, if you keep on being positve and keep on working to acheive something, you will achieve it. Heart is greater than talent. Heart is what makes people who they are. Motivate yourself everyday, it is something we need to do.
Until next time,