Fastest mile- 8:26
Less Fast Mile- 10:45
Beautiful day for a FREE Race!!
It has been raining non-stop here so when the sun blared through our window I was SURPRISED. Could it be sunny?? The folks at Scape sent me sunscreen to test and it could not have come at a better time. Jon picked me up and we headed to the race start. The Green River Marathon HERE is FREE put on by amazing runner and race director Steve Barrick and volunteers. We arrived about an hour early and sat to stretch and people watch. There was a guy in aqua socks, one in loafers and a few funny characters, gotta love runners. There were two porta potties, one was a convertible, it had no roof.... LOL!! Jon was lucky to get that one.
Amanda texted me that she had arrived but we did not connect and the race started..
We all stood near the bridge and then Steve said "GO!" We went out 2 miles and back. I knew we would see Amanda on the way back. It is HARD to hold back when racers are zooming by, Jon was asking me about the pace, he NEEDS a Garmin.
It is fun running with someone you dont know very well because you get to learn new things and see how they run the course and interact with other racers. With Mount Rainier in full view a CUTE couple asked what mountain it was... hmmmm... Jon thought they were kidding then continued to tell them the view from the TOP is GREAT! They laughed and said they would go climb after the Marathon.
- We got to the first water stop and turnaround. I had my handheld, then about .1 along we saw Amanda I immediately looped around to run with her and yelled at jon to come too :) There were photogs along the whole course, I cant wait until they post the pictures, we posed together and Jon set on ahead. At about mile 4 Amanda needed to stop and told me to go ahead, I probably should have stayed with her, the sub 9's were draining.
Instead I zoomed ahead to find Jon. We approached the trail I run nearly every day and I said "This is where I do my speed work." I guess I said it loud because the guy in front of us said "Well go ahead then!" LOL this proceeded to a back and forth banter including talk of piggy back rides to the Finish, runners are funny. We settled in behind two guys, one I had seen at several races the other was wearing black gloves and arm sleeves. Mind you it was HOT!! I was annoyed being behind them so we went around.
- The route was the same as the Million Inch run and I thought of Zoe as we passed the Casino. The half way mark we were at 1:55, poised for a sub 4:00 but I was starting to fade. A older woman with her bushy hair down and BIG calves kept playing leap frog with us. She was running all over the trail and nearly took out 1 bikers. UGH!! We yelled for her to stay right but she was CLUELESS! One runner can make us all look bad, I felt so bad for the bikers trying to avoid her.
We started to climb a small hill at mile 14 and I was done. Jon did his best to remind me that it was mental, he was a great positive coach, then he said "It could be that we ran 20 on Monday." Ding ding ding.....yes I was TIRED because I ran 20 miles on Monday... GRRRR!! What was I thinking?? I went to take a Gu and the water in my bottle made me need to pee. I told Jon to go ahead and went to the bushes.
- When I was done Jon was about 100 yards ahead, I would not reconnect with him the rest of the race. Miles 1-15 were sub 9's pace, miles 16-26.49 were 9-high 10's. I reminded myself that this was a training run and did not sweat it when I WALKED!! Yes I WALKED in a race. My feet were hot and I was ZAPPED. I stopped at the water stops to refill because I had been squirting half the bottle on my head to stay cool. There was a STEEP hill and I jogged half then walked, I could not afford to lose all my steam.
I was in conservation mode, my phone in my pouch became HEAVY as in I kept thinking about picking it up and calling Muscle Man to pick me up. Negative Nancy was in full force and it was BLEAK!! Then I realized where I was. I had been to this place over and over.. My Dad worked at a warehouse along the harbor for 30 years and there it was right in front of me. For a few minutes I thought about when I was young visiting Dad and getting Popsicles, sitting on the forklift and being so excited for the trip. About the Summer that I worked as a receptionist and created a quote board that made the warehouse men smile. I felt young again, my tired body was transported and my feet felt light. It is my Dad's birthday tomorrow, HAPPY BIRTHDAY DADDY!!!
- On I went, through the urban neighborhood, there was a lady about 100 yards ahead but I had no plans of passing her. Around mile 19 I was fading and then I saw a CRAZY woman in the middle of the road.
I cant tell you how happy I was to see Amanda!! I hoped that she would run the rest of the race with me....but alas she did not. I stopped for a quick hug and photo. I was so DONE!! But I had come too far to turn back. This photo tells the story of how I felt.
Yep, just breathe and keep moving!! I felt so alone, and HOT!! The water stop at mile 20 was out of cups so I refilled my bottle and drank Gatorade out of the jug. I thanked the volunteers and hobbled on. I could feel my toes filling with blisters and my shoulders were tense. There was a guy I had seen a few times along the way in a Halo headband. I think he was coaching 3 people or something because he would slow then speed up. We chatted as he passed by, he too was using it as a training run for Rock n Roll Seattle. I told him "I am usually much faster than this." He replied "That would make a good t-shirt." LOL!!
- S-L-O-W... I wished that I could find my speed with 10K left I knew I would not make sub 4:00. Amanda and friends HONKED as I stood at the traffic light. On to Alki, a beautiful place to run. A Girl was smiling and waving in windows, she had a lot of energy, she was followed by an older man and said "Dad we are almost done," he was clearly tired and said "I know bug, I am trying." I could tell she was sooo happy to be there with her Dad.
Mile 23 and Muscle Man drove by, I wanted to yell "PICK ME UP!!!" But I had come too far for that, giving in now would be a huge disappointment I was not injured, I was not cramping, I was simply tired and out of it mentally. I had no GOOD REASON to quit. A runner with a strong stride and dark hair was coming my way, could it be ZOE?? NOPE a Zoe mirage, BUMMER!! Funny the tricks the mind plays so deep in the race. Then Jill (at Running2Sanity) and Andrea drove past and yelled, I loved having so many people support me.
- They stopped the car and I HOPED that Jill would finish with me, I really needed someone to distract me from the TIREDNESS. She had run 25+ miles just days before and was not dressed to run.. BUMMER! I knew I would see her at the Finish. I kept on.
"Walk Melanie, Walk!!" My mind was telling me to talk, my body kept on moving. I passed Halo headband guy and the man in blue he was coaching, I could hear him say "It is OK just keep going." The last few miles were ROUGH and I was reminded AGAIN that I really am not a long distance runner. Eugene was different, I had prepared mentally and physically for months and was 333% focuses the entire race. I had made a FATAL MISTAKE again, I underestimated the distance and did not prepare mentally or physically. The Marathon is no easy task!!
FINALLY there they were, my FANS.. I could see Spud's but I could not see the FINISH LINE. I had passed 26.2, then remembered the loop to get Amanda. I was an ULTRAMARATHONER, hehehehe!!
"Where is the Finish Line??" A Makeshift finish line with chairs was up ahead, they read my number on my leg and recorded my time 4:06:24, I am very proud of that time on such a ROUGH and hot day! I quickly saw Jon chatting with another runner he had finished . Then found Muscle Man, the little studs and Jill and her crew. I sat to take my shoes off, my feet were on FIRE, I was not used to the hot pavement. I wanted so badly to dip my legs in the water at Alki but the beach seemed so far away. Jon went to soak his legs he had dodged to avoid a husky dog on the trail and tweaked his knee, he finished under 4:00 hours. I sat too out of it to move.....and Jill, my angel, offered to go to Tully's to get me a milkshake.
- The Little Studs went to play on the beach and I sat alone. RELIEVED to be done. It is amazing how each race can be so different. There are highs and lows in running and we RUN through them all.. Marathon #3 in the books folks!!!
Family photo, lifting Little Stud #2 was TOUGH. It is so AWESOME to have my family together at the Finish Line and I know the boys had a fun day.
And here is my pretty cheering section!! We talked about BOSTON and them coming to cheer for me there too.. That would be a BLAST! I feel very blessed to have friends take them time to come see me Finish, it means so much to have the support and positive vibes :)
- Post 499 :) See you at 500 tomorrow.
- FYI if you want a Bondiband go visit Stacie HERE ends today on her anniversary