Saturday night I was so excited about my upcoming Half Marathon on Sunday that I thought I would not be able to sleep at all. Instead, I was asleep nearly as soon as my head hit the pillow! I did wake up briefly a couple of time, looked at the clock and said "Nope - not time to get up yet!" and went back to sleep. Woke up again at 4:15 and decided I might as well get up and start getting ready.
I got dressed, made coffee, and got DH up, then had my "Running Breakfast" of a protein shake and banana. We left home about 5:30 to go pick up our son, and got to Seattle just after 6:30. It was still dark!
Oh my, the craziness! There were so MANY people, and it was SO LOUD! i was so excited, I think my heart rate was already nearly at Max, even before the start!
The race finally started at 7:30 and I think my pace group was about 5 minutes back from the start line. Hubby was filming at the start, filmed for 5 minutes and never did see me cross the line. But, we were off! Down 5th Ave. and on to I-90. I was feeling so good about my pace at that point, had even passed the runner with the pace marker. It was perfect weather for running. Cool, but not wet.
Somewhere near mile 3, just before the express tunnel, I decided it was time for a GU gel. Took my eyes off the road to unzip my pouch, and BAM! Found myself on the pavement! There was a large collective "OOHHH" from behind me, and then about a dozen hands picking me up! If any of my fellow Sparkers were among those who helped me up - Many thanks! I had split my chin, and it was bleeding, and my top lip was swelling up, but at that point I didn't really feel all the other spots that had made contact with the ground! I wiped off my chin, said "I'm OK" and took off running again. Behind me I heard "OMG- She's running again!"
Thanks also to the sweet young woman who decided to run along side of me for awhile, making sure I really WAS OK!
At this point, I was still feeling really good about my pace, even caught up with the pace runner again, and passed her again. I did get some funny looks from people as I was running, wasn't sure what that was about. (keep in mind, at this point I had not seen a mirror!) I was really loving the experience. DD had kept telling me "Just have fun, and be sure to remember the experience!"
At about mile 8, I saw my family, and ran over to give them a hug and kiss before continuing on. I was still feeling pretty darned good.
Prior to the race I was concerned about the hills I would encounter. Had had several training days when I chose a course that had hills to be sure I could handle them. That was a good thing, because there WERE HILLS! But they really didn't seem all that bad- a challenge, yeah, but not awful.
Then somewhere around mile 10 the ITB in my left knee made itself known! OH Darn! So I slowed down a bit, then I walked a bit, Then I ran some more and when it hurt again, I walked some more. By the latter part of mile 12 I was just walking, and not fast either! Every so often I would try to run, and the pain was just too much. I REALLY didn't want to WALK across the finish line, so I decided at that point, discretion was the better part of valor, and just walked up to the Stadium, and then sort of ran/hobbled across the line! My time was a "blazing" (tongue in cheek!) 3hrs, 11 min and 11 seconds! Not nearly what I had hoped for, but at that point very grateful for it to be over!
I collected my finish medal, my space blanket hugged my family, and hobbled into the Medical Tent. I was hoping for some ice, for my knee. The Doc (she said she was a physician - not a medical student!) took one look at me and said "here, you sit right here and lets clean up that chin!" (still no mirror!) Then she wanted to put stitches in it! Ultimately, she didn't, but only because their stitch material was too big, and would make too big of a scar! So she got that cleaned up, and bandaged, and cleaned out the gravel from my hands, bandaged them, and then turned to my knee. (FINALLY!) Apparently it was bleeding too, so it got bandaged. She gave me a bag of ice, saying "This is for your FACE, but you can change off with your knee if you want to!"
So, if any of you were there, I was the one in the Hot Pink jacket, with the bloody chin and fat lip!
I did eventually get to see a mirror, and even worse, the pictures DH had taken! Good Grief! At least people didn't run screaming the other way!
Well, Darling Daughter, I am pretty sure I will REMEMBER this one! Still, except for the falling down part, the bloody chin part, and the pain in the knee part, it was really fun. I DID love it, and I will do it again!
PS, In spite of the really slow time, I STILL finished 8th of 11 in my age div.! Like I always say, if you can't outrun the competition, just outlive them!