Sometimes I need some time to process....I feel like I'm still mulling over Chicago, the race, the tears... the everything.
To start, I had a 9 minute PR but I missed my 4:30 goal. My official finish was 4:41:19 and I might still be a little disappointed. I may have also cried when it was over, twice. But, to be fair, I'm also really proud of myself and super grateful that I'm even able to run.
This WILL NOT be a whiny post, even though I'm sort of blah about the whole race. Don't get me wrong, it was fun and totally well organized, but it just lacked something for me. Maybe I had too much build up going on? Maybe I knew what to expect already having run a marathon? Or maybe it was just no NYC Marathon? Because as we already know NY was the BEST day of my life!
To say that I wasn't and am still not bummed is an understatement. I really wanted that 4:30 finish, I felt ready for it. I had a lot of little missteps though that were part of it: I think I went out too fast (although I was only just under a sub 10 pace, I should have stuck with a 10:10 pace) with too few walking through water breaks, my garmin was not really working - I had a hard time catching satellite and when I finally did I lost it completely, I had to pee 3, yes 3 times and the last 2 times I had stage fright and couldn't go (WTF!!).
I will say though that I felt AMAZING the first 13 miles, around 14 I started to walk the water stops, not because I felt bad, more because I wanted to conserve energy, by 18 I felt like crap due to the bladder/stage fright issue. I felt better around mile 22 even while knowing how far off I was from my goal. Mentally and physically I felt ok and tried to push those last few miles. I wish I had the data to see my pace for the end! Damn satellites! Was it a good race? Absolutely! Did I learn anything....absolutely! I need to lose weight. I know my 160# frame is holding me back from really hitting my potential.
This whole training cycle was a tremendous learning experience. I got through the heat, the tears and 3 20 milers! I also proved to myself that I'm a runner. That I want to continue running (remember, I'm a former fat, drinking, smoking, hanging out not even thinking abut running type of gal) and that I'm not too bad at it!
While I didn't quite recreate that best day ever feeling, I felt ok with the disappointment, Ok with my race...OK with the fact that I'm a 2x marathoner who has nothing but time to get better. So while I cried for a minute, I also cried over the fact that I just finished something that took 16 weeks to prepare for - successfully! I used to be afraid to set goals for fear of not reaching them, so maybe not running a 4:30 was the universe's way of letting me know that failure won't kill me?