I was nothing but excited for this race!! I had zero nerves whatsoever, which for a worrier like myself, is a huge deal! I think knowing what to expect helped a ton! The expo helped get me super pumped!!
I had a disgustingly early wake up call to get with my carpool and get up to load the buses.
I started the race in excellent spirits even though the rain was pouring and the headwind was trying to kill me. I found the 4:30 pacer and decided to stick with her and not even worry about my watch, but after a couple miles I noticed that she was really pushing the pace, like a whole minute faster per mile than was needed for that pace. I hoped it was a fluke and stuck with her for a couple more miles. When I realized she wasn't slowing down (she actually kept speeding up), I backed off and slowed down to the right pace. I would have died off if I would have tried to maintain that pace the rest of the way.
I didn't mind the rain. I learned from the monsoon last year at the Ogden Half not to ditch my poncho, so I managed to stay pretty dry and warm with it on. The wind got incredibly brutal in some spots. A couple times it whipped me so hard I almost fell over and it blew my headphones out of my ears! And guess what? I only swore once.
Around mile 13-14 my legs got tired and back really started to hurt. That's never happened to me. I got a little nervous but said a small prayer for some help and just kept on going. I wanted to keep my spirits high so I could conquer myself mentally. I feel like I end up sabotaging myself in each race because I start playing mind games and screw myself up. That didn't happen this time.
Mile 14 was a pretty big hill that lasted a couple miles. I told myself to push it and ended up running the whole stretch without ever stopping to walk. Accomplishing that gave me a HUGE adrenaline rush, and something just clicked inside me and I flew! After mile 16 the rain finally, FINALLY let up (not the wind though) and after I was certain it was done, I finally ditched my poncho which helped me not feel like a kite in the wind. Or a sail boat, whichever gives you a better visual.
I walked briefly through every aid station and drank a glass of Gatorade and water. I always ate the oranges and bananas whenever they were supplied and ate my own personal fuel every 4 miles. Because of this, I never hit the wall and was able to just keep on truckin'! In fact mile 23 was my fastest split! My first marathon my body was toast by then. However, my pace slowed after mile 23, but that's fine with me.
The final mile and a half (ish?) the course turns south to head to the finish line. Somehow there was a strong head wind this direction, too, which made me want to swear, but I was running past the Ogden temple, so I refrained. I could see the finish line off in the distance but it seemed to get further away with each step I took. Again, no swearing. Finally I made it to the end, and I was nothing but smiles and elated spirits as I crossed the finish line!!
We came home to quite the display from my brother and sister in law. It was the sweetest thing!! They planned to make it to the race but didn't, so they decorated the house instead.
Tonight we had Brynlies birthday party, which was quite the shin dig, but I will blog about that next time. Right now I plan on sleeping for a couple days. See you soon!