I knew I was physically able to get the time I needed! Of course I still needed to find a race that wasn't super hilly *cough* Anything Seattle *cough*.
I found a tiny little marathon called The Tunnel Lite. It's run by these people and is the sister race to the Light at the End of the Tunnel in July. In fact I would get a left over medal from the race in July!
Somehow that made me want it more.
|It's so shiny and beautiful! (I'm doing my "Woop. Woop" hands. my sister Megan loves those)|
I had just under 12 weeks of training after taking a two week recovery period. I was a little nervous.
In addition, Running Buddy Amy was completely burnt out on marathons and Running Buddy Heather didn't have the time with her new job.
Training for a marathon alone bites. Do yourself a favor and find a running buddy.
But I did it with a lot of help from my friends.
My friend Dennis signed up as well, so we car pooled up to North Bend WA, and my friends Chrissy, Josh and Drew met us up there the night before.
|Dennis and I at the Start line waiting and sporting our P3 colors. The guy behind us ran in his flame outfit!)|
Chrissy was my pit crew boss. She is awesome at her job. She took care of everything so I didn't have to do anything but run. She made signs (other runners were loving them!) she met me at almost every trail head to cheer me on. (The last one she skipped so she could be sure to be at the finish line in time) Josh ran with me from mile 13 to 16.5 to help pace me (he hates running).
|As you can see it was super foggy but it was a gorgeous course! Josh and I are running into the exchange where Drew was waiting to pace me.|
After getting a bit turned around and having Chrissy hunt him down like the blood hound she is to make sure he was there to meet me in time, my friend Drew paced me in for TEN MILES. He didn't have to. But he did.
|Mile 13.3 and right on my pace target! I seriously felt amazing for the entire run.|
He's an awesome pacer. He's super easy going and just loves to run...anywhere really. He even sings on some of our runs. He made sure I kept to the shortest route and didn't serpentine all over the trail as I sometimes end up doing (running in a straight line is hard).
After he paced me in and made sure I was situated, he even went back out and found Dennis and ran HIM in! (What he told Chrissy was "I think I'm going to go run some more".)
He even stopped and checked on another runner who looked like they were lying on the ground barfing but turned out to just be stretching.
Josh even met us at about mile 23ish and ran with us again!
I ate at all the right times, and didn't forget to take my salt tablets. I DID managed to miss count my servings so I ended up being about 1.5 servings short but I just felt good and didn't let any negativity in. I also drank Gatorade for the first time in forever while running. It was a good choice.
I crossed the finish line with a time of 3:37:45! I had needed a 3:40:00 to qualify.
This race, was hands down the best marathon I've ever run. Not because I actually FINALLY made my goal but because the whole thing just felt like an amazing run with friends.
The way running is supposed to feel:)