I knew, even though or maybe because I had taken the early start, that I was probably not going to be finishing the race in under two hours and 30 minutes. My goal in my mind was to finish and, hopefully, in under three hours. I was sure I could do it!
I had talked with several of the runners also taking the early start. One was sure that I would only see her at the start, not because I was fast but because she just knew. I finally hooked up with two runners from Montgomery, NY. Funny thing, I use to have relatives in Montgomery. One of my ex’s sister’s married into a family from there.
Anyway, I ran a little slower at the beginning. I knew I needed to start off a bit slower. I would need what little energy I conserved at the beginning for the end as I wanted to spring across the finish line – doesn’t every racer want to look good going across the finish? I caught up with the two women from Montgomery about a mile and a half in at the first water stop. I was at 17 minutes, not really a slow start for me but I was feeling good.
The ladies from Montgomery hadn’t been training as much as I had so they were sure we would be fine together. And we stayed together for a good portion of the race. We were together as the real “racers” came barreling past us. We received a lot of “good jobs” together as others who started at 10 am passed us and knew we were early starters. Both women were younger than I was but Karen was injured and Donna hadn’t run in weeks. At what I thought was 8.5 miles but was probably closer to just about 8 miles, I told the two of them to go ahead. I needed to slow down a bit.
At about mile 9.5 I had an asthma attack. I seriously didn’t think I was going to get that next breathe in. My doctor and I will have a serious discussion about this soon. I did what I have told my daughter to do many times. I slowed to a walk, straightened my arms out over my head and took several short breathes, then deep ones as I could. Once I could breathe again, I started running.
As I hit mile 11, I realized I was going to do it. Even though I may talk a good game, there was a nagging voice in the back of my head that said I could stop. I might not actually finish but by mile 11, I was positive I would finish. Kristy and her running partner Dan passed me about mile 12. I was trying hard as I came up to mile 13 to not cry.
Reaching a goal that you have set and worked for is an emotional moment. I crossed the finish line and knew that I had finished under the time I had set for myself. I was thinking I would go talk to Kristy and Dan but I couldn’t. I knew I was going to cry. It took a lot to get through the hotel to my room before truly letting go. I texted a good friend to let him know my time.
And one last mess – I am totally not sure what is up with my photo ability in the last post. I am going to put up a couple of pictures of what I came home with.