Bringing It Back: Ramblings Of My First Marathon

I will never forget my forget my first marathon. June 4, 2010. San Diego Rock N Roll. I remember waking up around 4 in the morning and slipping these babies on. Flat and fast. I loved these shoes. They carried me through a 5k PR and a 10K PR.  They would certainly be perfect for the marathon right?

Racing flats. Why I made the last-minute decision to wear them that day is beyond me. It must have been the light as a feather reasoning.

I remember the gun going off and sailing through the first half with ease. I think I crossed 13.1 at 1:44. Man, I thought, I am going to crush my goal. This is awesome. I continued to feel pretty good through 17 and around 18 I started to feel fatigued. Want to know what stinks about getting tired? My form fails a little. Failing form in racing flats is not a good combo.

It was at 18 or maybe 18.5, I can’t quite remember, I felt a sharp pain in my knee. It was so bad that I didn’t think I would finish. What could be wrong? Mentally I felt fine. Yes, it was hot but I would survive. I pressed on to 20 and wanted so badly to sprout wings. By now the pain was shooting down through my foot. Only 10k left.

My early cruising pace turned to what felt like a shuffle. I walked through the water stations and considered bailing out. No!! I am almost done. There is no turning back. I remember getting to mile 25 and wondering what the heck happened? I was doing great and now this?! And then there it was. The finish line. FINALLY! It took every last ounce of energy to get my legs to go. And then I crossed it and I think I cried a little.

I finished my first marathon in 3:59. Barely broke 4 hours but I did it. And I didn’t celebrate. THAT SUCKS. The last 10k took me more than an hour. And I beat myself up about it. SO LAME. SO SO LAME.

I was ticked. Ticked. I was ahead of the 3:30 pace group through 17 and at 19 they passed me. That feeling was horrible. Yes, I finished and I was proud of that. But the feeling of defeat still lingered. Who beat me you ask? I did. I beat myself. That, friends, is the worst.

A week after that marathon I couldn’t walk. That pain I told you about? Plantar Fasciitis. And bad. So bad that I was out of running for 3 months. I was able to start again about 4 weeks before the Nike Women’s Half Marathon. Lesson learned after my first 26.2? Don’t do anything new on race day. Oh, and don’t try to run a marathon in minimalist shoes without slowly building up mileage.

Why am I talking about this now? Because I still have my shoes with the d-tag attached that stare me in the face every time I open the closet. They are a reminder of what I accomplished that day. A day I will never forget. And a day I really didn’t get to properly celebrate. Maybe I will do that tonight!

#4 is 7 weeks away!

 

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26 thoughts on “Bringing It Back: Ramblings Of My First Marathon

  1. I loved reading this. I know what it feels like to feel like I let myself beat myself. So frustrating. But I think it is often what spurs me to be better and overcome. I do love those Nike shoes, but I have never run a marathon in them, only workouts and 10k’s.

    You are amazing!

  2. Were you with me at Nike Women this weekend? It was my 2nd half, but my first not injured. I had high hopes and had trained my booty of. How disappointed was I when I saw my time and it was worst then my 1st 1/2 when I was injured and hadn’t trained for 6 weeks?

    Let me tell you this, you just helped my mind set so much for Vegas. You, my idol, the most amazing runner in my world has races just like me. 🙂 I love you and thank you for letting me know you go through all the same stuff rookies like me go through.

  3. Love this post! 🙂 You helped me to reminisce about my first marathon. I remember crying a little at the finish and I think the tears were mixed with pain and gratitude. I told myself that day…”I’m never going to run a marathon again!!” 3 months later I was in San Diego R&R for #2!!

    I love that you saved your shoes!

    Celebrate EVERY marathon and running race from now on kay?! kay!! 🙂

    Have a happy, awesome day!!

  4. I didn’t do the shoe thing in my first, but I did do the ‘bat outta hell’ thing for the first half of it 😛 And I paid the piper, too. I didn’t run for 6 months after… I didn’t want to. So glad that feeling finally passed 🙂

    Hope #4 rocks your world… cuz no doubt YOU will rock IT!

  5. I needed a story like this one! Thank you!

    I’m nursing tendinitis in both of my knees and have been out for a few weeks (mostly because of the wrong shoes, go figure). I was only training for a 5K, but I was enjoying the process and feeling stronger for doing it. But I love reading that you’re still running despite the injury. And you deserve BIG celebrations for finishing any race, but especially a marathon, and especially under duress!

    You’re an inspiration!

    1. Oy tendinitis is no fun! I am just recovering from Achilles tendinitis and I felt like it would never go away. It’s amazing how much damage the wrong shoe can do. Sometimes the hard way is the only way we learn 🙂

      Get better and get back out there girlie!

  6. Great post! I really liked reading it. I think it’s a good lesson – enjoy every moment as it comes. and don’t run a marathon in racing flats 😛 lol i can’t wait for #4 you are going to do so well!!!

  7. I loved reading about your first marathon and I made the exact same mistake about using racing flats and never running in them before…oops. I wasn’t out for 3 months though..DANG!!! It is so easy to get down on ourselves about running and we forget what a HUGE accomplishment it is to even run 26.2 miles let alone our time!

  8. I just found your blog, I’m always late to the party 😉 Anyway, I am 4 weeks into dealing with plantar fasciitis and was sad to read you were out for 3 months! I have had two cortisone injections already and am now in a boot. Any secrets to speed recovery? What finally worked?

    1. OK, I was out for 3 months because I waited 3 weeks to see a doc. Once I saw my primary doc he said no running, stretch, ice, etc. 2 weeks later still hurting! So he referred me to a podiatrist and I knew what was coming: inserts, cortisone, etc. I knew I didn’t want to go that route because I would be told not to run, lol. I finally found a doc that was a runner around week 6 and within 2 weeks I was on the road to recovery, 6 weeks later almost pain free. I wish I would have seen him from day 1 and I would have healed much faster 🙂 I will email you so that this comment doesn’t go on forever 🙂 There is hope friend, it WILL go away!!

  9. Dude, you reply to every commenter. You’re the most thoughtful blogger evaaaa!

    I’m amazed you were aiming for under 3:30 for your FIRST marathon. That is astounding! It’s sad that us runners are often not kind to ourselves after not meeting our expectations, but I like your hindsight perspective. Oh and I always do something new on race day, I just can’t stop myself. I know I shouldn’t but I love putting something fresh and unworn on…a new shirt, or socks, or sunglasses…ya know

  10. I ran a long run in new shoes and had a great run until the last mile where it hurt my right foot at every step. Did you take a complete break from running for 3 months? After about 3 months I have been running, but I am still having some PF. How do you kill the PF beast?

    1. I will do a PF post. It took 3 months because for the first month I think I was in denial. The pain got so bad that I could barely walk so running was out of the question. The key is to break up the scar tissue- the pain will go away quickly once you do that!

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