When you think of running a half marathon, or any long distance for that matter, you think of weeks or even months of training to prepare your body for what is to come. Proper diet, lots of stretching, long runs… right?
Perhaps in a perfect world that is what would happen. In my world, however, that is not even close.
Last year three friends and I decided to run the San Antonio Rock and Roll Half Marathon as a means of getting all of us together. You see, we all live in different cities/states and with our busy lives it’s hard to make time to see each other. But being lifelong friends, we decided to MAKE IT HAPPEN. And that we did.
We planned to train hard and steadily. Unfortunately, planning and doing– very different things.
We decide that due to our SEVERE lack of training, we’re just going to make this a “fun” race. We even made shirts (thank you Gabri) for the race with our faces on it. How awesome is that?
Mile 6-7 is where I am starting to feel my achy knees and I’m realizing I need a pick me up. I was assured there would be Gu along the way every couple miles to give a little energy. I am seeing now that I was lied to! No Gu in sight!
At this point Rachel, Gabrielle and I are on a mad search for Gu. Every table we pass, every volunteer we see we are harassing for a little taste of disgustingly flavored energy gel. I am STARVING and there is nothing to be found.
Mile 8 is about the time I am realizing the severity of the stupidity of this idea. I’m starting to lose my mind. What were we thinking? Why did we do this to ourselves? Why did we believe the Gu fairies were going to help us through 13.1 miles?
Mile 9 and still no Gu. NO GU! Why am I SO obsessed with it? I think at this point in my fragile mental state I needed something to occupy my thoughts. My body is cursing my name and I have to look forward to something!
Mile 10 begins and I have all but lost hope for the sweet nectar of relief I so desperately have searched for. Then as if a gift from heaven- we spot squished foil packets on the ground. GUUUUUUUUUUUUUU!!!! We hit up that table like fat kids in a bakery. I am stashing this stuff in every crevice I can find- inside the back of my pants, in my sports-bra- there aren’t too many choices in this outfit!
Mentally, I am back in the game. Physically, however, I am suffering. My left butt-cheek has cramped up and I can no longer effectively pick up my left leg to “run” properly. I am a pathetic sac of an athlete. Rachel has also somehow gotten a leg cramp about this time. We stop and stretch for a few minutes, hoping to get rid of this agony.
No such luck. The Gu high has worn off and the real pain is kicking in. We are dragging our sorry bodies along the last few miles.
Mile 12.754789 is behind us… just a little more! OH MY GOD IS THAT A HILL????? @#*&$&#@##*&#!!!!!!!!! I don’t even know what words I actually said at this point, but I am certain they should not be repeated here.
Suck it up butt-cheek!! Don’t fail me now!!!! We have to finish this race at a decent pace! PEOPLE WILL BE WATCHING!!
Ahhhhhhhh! The agony/glory/achievement/emotion/pain of the finish line was incredible. All of the sudden We have forgotten every moment of horror of the last couple hours and are now all smiles.
It was such an amazing feeling to have achieved what we did. I would tell anyone to do it if the chance ever came.