Race report - I finished and I am still alive to type this report. A few things happened to me over the course of the race weekend. The majority of the experience was awesome and very rewarding but there were a few times during the experience that was less then awesome and had me second guessing myself and my ability.
We got to Grand Rapids and finally made it from the hwy to the Amway Grand Hotel - 45 minutes to make it about 3 blocks - shall I say traffic was a little heavy? 21000K race participants and expo visitors made it difficult to navigate down town. We checked in and dropped our stuff off in our room and headed to the expo center. I picked up my race packet and we walked around a bit. Stopped at a booth and was talking to an employee of a sporting good store - she kindly asked if I was running tomorrow and I said yes and she asked which race (there was a 5k, 10k and 25k) I smiled and said the 25K and she said “REALLY?” with a very surprised tone in her voice. She acted very surprised that I (an overweight person) was running in the 25K. I shrugged it off and went on our way. We did the trolley tour and had dinner and made it back to the room.
Had a relaxing evening at the hotel and BFF said I slept even though I did not feel like I did - she said the evidence was in my SNORING. I really should have that looked at but am hoping it goes away with my weight loss.
Woke up at the butt crack of dawn. I had my phone alarm set, wake up call and scheduled coffee to be delivered at 5:00 am. I got dressed and ready and waited….and waited….and waited some more. I decided to go out side for a little walk and see the people arriving and to test the coolness and my short sleeves. I walked out the door in to the hall and apparently we were on the floor with the VIP conference room. Door was open when I walked by and it was full of carbs and very foreign runners eating their carb filled breakfast. I asked someone for an extra course map and she said “which race…I only have the 25K” and when I said the 25K was the one I needed she said “REALLY?”. I had had enough of the response so I replied “yes and DON’T ACT SO SURPRISED - HEAVY PEOPLE CAN DO IT TOO” and she said oh I did not mean it that way. Yeah right you did not. I thanked her for the map and went out in the crowds and started my prep for the race.
I went back up to the room and finished getting ready and decided to stay with the short sleeves. BFF and I walked down 20 minutes before the start of the race and thank goodness I did not have to use the restroom at the expo center or a porta john - the lines were CRAZY. BFF snapped this picture of me while we waited for all the speedy runners to go by before I jumped out on to the street.
I don’t normally like to have my picture taken but I let her document me and my excitement. Yes - she did it with out me knowing and posted it on FB.
Race started and around about mile 3 I turned around and found myself not too far away from the police car bringing up the rear of the race. I stayed in that position the entire race. First half went very well - flat and uneventful. I had people around me for the first 1/2 of the race. 2nd 1/2 was very very very lonely. I was alone the entire way except for the police car probably 1/2 mile back with two or three others who were slower then me. The hills started and kicked my ass. I had a terrible time with cramping around mile 11. My calves were seizing up pretty good. I asked one of the friendly EMT guys on bikes if they had a salt packet - he gave me a Cliff Block with tons of salt in it - I gagged it down and it did the trick for about 2 miles and then I spent the last 3-4 miles walking and crying.
I was crying for many reasons. I was tired, my feet hurt, my legs were cramped, I was mad at myself for being so heavy, I was mad that the aid stations were all mostly down when I came to them, I was mad because the spirit stations were gone, I was mad at myself for signing up for this race to begin with, and I was happy that I was going to finish it. I was proud of myself for saying I was going to do something and for training and doing it. I cried when I was told the streets were opening behind me and that I would have to finish the race on the sidewalk. I called BFF and cried some more. She yelled at me and told me to keep going that she was waiting for me at the finish line - I LOVE MY BFF. I rounded the corner and finish line was kind of still there. As I got closer a race worker saw me and stopped what he was doing and told me he would finish with me…..he cheered me on and walked with me. BFF saw me and came though the fence and walked with me across the line too. Race worker man got me a medal and congratulated me for finishing.
Food was all gone at the finish line - I did get a muscle milk as they were loading them back into their truck and BFF helped me walk the block and half to get back to the hotel. She filled the bathtub with ice and cold water and I climbed in fully dressed and shivered and shook for 10 minutes. She brought me snacks and then laughed very hard when I dropped a chip in the water and I picked it up and ate it. We both laughed so hard. She catered to my every need and fetched me everything I wanted and then some. I could not have done it with out her. So THANK YOU to my BFF for everything.
Just got home and walked in to RED ROSES on the counter from the boy and dear hubby - for mothers day. I love my family and my BFF. I also love myself and realized this weekend that I am a very strong person and I can do just about anything I set my mind too. I am going to take this next week to recover and I will be focusing my attention on shorter runs (5-10K’s) and working on my core/strength. I want to loose 50 pounds. Dropping pounds has never been easy for me - but I will give it my best shot.
Not sure if I will get out of this lazy boy chair today - just might spend the entire rest of the day sitting right here doing NOTHING.
Enjoy your Mothers Day - Happy Mothers day to everyone!