Well another checked off the list. The Gold Medal Challenge which begun at 7 AM on Sat. AM and was completed approximately 11:40 Sunday AM. Half Marathon (48 laps around the 443m Pettit track) on Sat. in 1:36 and Full (95.5 laps) on Sunday in 3:38. Here is a little re-cap….
Sat. AM. – Feeling good with a goal of somewhere between 1:34 and 1:38. It’s purpose was a moderately hard pace for 13 miles running even splits. Felt good throughout and ran steady. Stomach was a little iffy towards the very end but nothing horrible and finished strong. Did not feel to tired at all after and was overall pleased with the effort knowing I was running a full marathon the next day. I was 2nd going into the marathon behind the AMAZING and TALENTED Mary Flaws.
And after Sat. comes Sunday and I somehow found myself back at the Pettit to play again. This time it was twice the distance, twice the fun, right? Some foam rolling out the IT band and I was back on the indoor track. I was without doubt feeling a bit nervous. This was the first time I have attempted back to back races and certainly nothing like these distances. But, hey…. I’ve been through worse and it was a challenge and going to be a journey. 5, 4, 3, 2, 1..GO! 1st gun didn’t go, 2nd gun failed too. It was the great Chris Ponteri’s voice that started the Marathon. 😉 Chris has done such a fantastic job with this event, and the volunteers were AWESOME.
So I thought to myself, don’t think laps, just break up the time and run comfortably. So that is what I did. I was around 1:40 ish at the half and feeling really good. No noticeable fatigue from the day before and I was encouraged. All went well till about mile 19. I started to notice lots of salt on my face and arms. Something new, for sure … My stomach was not happy and I knew I needed some electrolytes and needed them quickly. Huge thanks to Dave Jesse for getting me some Powerade which helped a bit and I continued to press on. Without doubt I need to find a better fueling strategy as the Gu’s and a little water proved not to be successful, even after using them for many previous marathons.
Around mile 22, it was all about focusing on “relentless forward progress”. Ironic as I am reading a book with that title right now. When it was announced I had 12 laps remaining I said to myself, “Cristin, all you have to do is count down from 12”. That is easier said than done and each time around I questioned how many laps to go? The running community is special and I was so grateful for the support and encouragement from so many.
With about 2 laps to go I just said to myself, GO with ZERO REGRETS. And I finished in 3:38. I was shooting for anything between 3:30 and 3:39 if all went well. I had no clue I might be at the half at 1:40. I am overall really pleased with the weekend knowing that I have just started my training for Boston Marathon in April and Ice Age 50 in May. I am really excited about exploring the longer distances on the trails moving forward and experiencing many journeys and adventures.
Things I learned over the weekend:
• Mary Flaws makes the most amazing cookies
• The running community is filled with amazing volunteers, runners, and supporters
• My nutrition strategy was a #FAIL and I need to get smarter and try something different
• LOVE my CEP compression socks and Newton Distancia’s
• I am forever grateful for Froedtert Sports Medicine and Mike Ribar’s guidance and help in coming back from 3 spine surgeries and several knee surgeries.
• I’m really glad to be done running in circles for awhile. 143.5 laps is enough for now….
Today I woke up a bit sore, nothing in particular, just overall body sore. Getting a bit more sore as the day goes on but I am SO GRATEFUL THAT THE BACK AND KNEE FEELS GOOD!!!!!! Nothing makes me happier than to know that I am BACK and DOING WHAT I LOVE!!! 🙂
Off to plan more adventures!