Half Training: Week 10

Dec 14, 2012

SEVEN days. SIX till race day.  Holy shit - please excuse me while I throw up a little in my mouth...

11/25 - Rest Day

11/26 - Run 3 miles: 29:07 on the treadmill.  Speed work - dominated.

Felt like I'd just scaled Kilimanjaro, on a whim, with no guide. Score! Moment to take in the awesomeness that is this run - done :)

11/27 - Cross Train: None
Weight 127.6

11/28 - Run 3 miles: None

Migraine day #3. Bed bound by mid afternoon - pumped fluids and slept as much as possible. Perhaps it is stress, or my body is shutting down. Who knows - welcome to age 30.

11/29 - Run 4 miles: 2.19 miles around my neighborhood (24:19), slow, and easy.

Had to take a sick day from work due to the mind numbing, on the verge of vomit migraine day #4, and took the opportunity to rest as much as humanly possible.  When I approached the brink of my sanity, to the chagrin of my sole sisters, I went for a quick run. While my migraine stayed at bay during the run, once I got home it came back with a throbbing vengeance.  Shitballs.  But at least I knew I could run and my migraine would leave me alone. Before and after was a different story.  In hindsight I was probably dehydrated, which lead to the headaches. I've suffered from mild dehydration (nothing hospital worthy) twice this year, so it makes sense.  The quest to hydrate, but not over hydrate continues...

11/30 - Run 2 miles: Ran 1 mile on the treadmill with this girl. Though in reality we went to the hotel gym, watched Duck Dynasty, jogged a mile-ish, and stretched. In our defense we were beyond stoked to Road Trip and overly stimulated enough to jump start a Hummer.

The road trip to Memphis was a swift four hours (minus 3 pit stops so I could nervous pee). Once we got on the road - an hour late. Thankfully M drove so Lauren and I gabbed the ENTIRE way. To help M not jump out of a moving vehicle screaming cope, I set the radio to NPR with hopes of drowning out the cackles.

Expo: Packet pickup was efficient. We were in an out of the convention center in thirty, which included perusing the vendors. While I felt the vendors were lackluster, in reality I didn't need to buy anything since I already had two. Of everything. Details.

Runner Tracker - only available via Facebook and Twitter update it did the trick. Here's what the updates look like (there were three total):
I crossed the 5K at 8:39:31 am with a time of 00:30:18 and pace of 09:45 min/mi.
Bib: 7753
Time: 2:21:59 - 2,876 out of 6592 overall; 1596 out of 4411 in my age group

12/1 - Race Day. (Photos here and here. Recap here.) The day I've been counting down to. The experience was INCREDIBLE, and a day I will hold close to my heart forever.

Throughout my training I adopted the mantra: "This isn't about you". As I've said before, I would have NEVER had the willpower to run 13.1 for myself. Insert fantastic, warm fuzzy inducing stories, and courageous kiddos and I had my purpose. So most times when I'd get down on myself I'd recite it. Or when I wanted to make it a DVR night and not run.  Or during long runs when my spirit was tested. Or when 3 miles felt like 19. Bottom line, I used that word almost as much as I used the word "f@%&" during training. Almost. Those thirteen miles (and training) didn't run themselves folks...

Race Memories:
  • Waking up at 5:30 and following my run routine. Get dressed. Check gear. Recheck gear.
  • Got down 1/2 a Brown Rice Cake before the nervous dance began. 
  • Snapped a few pre race photos
  • Entered the corral
  • Cried
  • Stretched
  • Wondered what I'd gotten myself into
  • Took gels
  • Attempted to shut off my brain
  • Agreed on splitting our pace differences and running in a corral in between so we could start together
  • Taking a moment to pray before the start
  • People stopping at porta potties before the first mile - in the woods, behind buildings
  • Splitting off from Amie after the 1 mile marker
  • Failed attempt to follow the pace leader 
  • Being SO excited once I found my stride, taking in every. single. detail
  • Pacing faster than anticipated - mentally patting myself on the back, and digging in to keep going
  • Running along the riverfront
  • First aid station - spilling Powerade ALL over myself. 
  • Hitting the first hill - freaking out, taking a deep breath, then realizing it wasn't so bad
  • Running along Beale Street - the lights, the crowds cheering
  • Thinking to myself: "you can't quit, OR slow down. There are SO many people cheering, don't let them down."
  • St. Jude's Campus - the balloon arches, families, music, signs
  • Attempted crying - which was more of hyperventilating because I didn't want to lose momentum and stop. And when I cry my whoe body cries...
  • Running past a hospital ER, and the staff who stood outside and rooted us on
  • Aid station - spilling slightly less Powerade on myself
  • Running through the Zoo - trails, Marathon Foto photo op, wet towel station
  • Hitting mile 11, ready to be done, and assuming the volunteers were moving the mile markers and plotting my demise
  • The HILL sometime after mill 11, questioning my faith, and the subsequent (out loud, over my ipod) pep talk to tackle said mountain hill
  • The signs: Everything from "thank you for running for my angel", to "keep going, the Kenyans already crossed the finish line"
  • Passing mile 12, eager for the finish line
  • Splitting off from the marathoners (which by this point I was sure they automatically got into heaven for, and couldn't be more grateful for the 13.1 finish)
  • Turning into Auto Zone Park, crossing the finish line, taking a deep breath, a moment thank God for this journey, and seeing our cheering section
  • Cried
What. A. Journey. Here I am, the furthest person from running. Completing a half marathon.   When up until May 2012 I avoiding running unless I was being chased by a mask wearing, machete toting psycho. - and even then I would've probably tried to negotiate the chase. It ceases to amaze me of the new path my life has taken over the last year. And that me, of all people, am a RUNNER. Race lessons learned and tips coming soon...

Besides MASSIVE cramps about twenty minutes post race (taking a banana and a few strawberries to the face worked like a charm) and SEARING leg pain (my compression tights went on moments after I showered until Monday- review coming soon) I felt like I'd just cured world hunger AND found the fountain of youth. 

Sunday we rose (slowly - holy hangover batman: vague recollection of Beale Street shenanigans) and at the recommendation of the hotel went here for brekkie. Hot. Damn. Thank Sweet Baby Jesus it ended up being a brunch buffet, this girl was so hungry I almost turned tricks on the corner for a stick of gum. Upon entry we knew this establishment was going to be everything ravenous hungover/sore/exhausted people hope for - food we didn't have to cook in a gorgeous setting. We knew those linen tablecloths and jazz band strumming in the corner came at a price, one I was willing to sell an ovary for if they'd just give me a piece of bread. After GORGING on everything from ettouffee to eggs I was once again, ok to continue life and forge forward. As long as the forging was from the passenger seat (Dear God, It's me, Marcia. Mark REALLY deserves to be in heaven now...). Once back in the Lou I headed to my moms to get my hair done. Now mind you I've just been in the car for about five hours, SORE from running my first half marathon, and exhausted from the whirlwind weekend:

Mom: Look at you and your new shirt, how nice!
Marcia: Thanks
Mom: Couldn't you have gotten a longer shirt though, that one doesn't cover your vagina over those tights.
Marcia: Compression Tights. 

Mothers. Gotta love them.

My goal right now is to make the whole leg soreness go away, and to take 14 blissful days off off all fitness. Am I taking the "no running one day for every mile you raced" literally and dramatically.  Hells yeah.  Mama needs her beauty rest. And to clean out her DVR...


  1. Marcia! I'm so excited to find your blog! You're inspiring! :)

    1. Thanks Jaimie -you're too kind. Hope all is well, and Happy Holidays!


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