Forgive me for being long winded - it was a long race!
Dude drove us down there. We got a late start because, well, just because. He had been travelling, I put off final packing, I wanted to make him a great breakfast since I was dragging him down to Myrtle to watch a marathon, etc. So, 8 hours later, we make it to packet pick up and I get my bib – number 5411. We head to the hotel – 3500 Ocean Blvd, 1.3 miles from the race start. There should be plenty of time to organize my stuff, drink my traditional beer and still get plenty of sleep. EXCEPT, apparently there is Myrtle Beach, then there is North Myrtle Beach…16 miles away. Yes, I’m an idiot! Still organized my stuff and had my beer, but sleep was curtailed – no biggie, it was a restless night anyways!
Woke up in plenty of time but started dicking around with the gear and stuff so ended up getting to the race with less then 15 minutes to spare. No time to find the tent so I gave my special needs bag to Dude and asked him to take it to the tent after we started. I searched for Jason and realized most of the other Team Z’ers were wearing their tri jersey so I changed shirts (I’m such a girl). Finally found Jason and got ready to go. Weather was perfect, race wasn’t too crowded, in a word, perfect.
Funny aside, as I was looking for Jason, I noticed the pacing flags, 4:30. 5, etc. I was wondering why there was so much room for these paces since there can’t be THAT many people who can run 5 minute miles for a marathon. Ohhhh, that’s hours!
Dude left his camera in the car (because I rushed him to the start because I didn’t want to go alone) so the only start pics are from my phone, so quality sucks!
We started with a nice pace, Zone 2 (well, my official zone 3, but I was able to carry an easy conversation the whole time so I call it zone 2). About 2 miles in there were a bunch of guys peeing in the woods. I looked at Jason and said, “this is one of the few times I wish I had a penis”. People around us just laughed at me. At some point Tim Greten passed us and we really wanted to speed up (seriously, the guy is not a runner AND he hasn’t been training) but we stuck to our plan and continued along. First "Dude Sighting" was Mile 8.
Around mile 9 we ran into McDonald’s for the bathroom break (my fear of no toilet paper and no place to wash my hands kept me out of the port-a-potties). At some point Jason looked at his watch and said, “Low zone 2, I could run an ultra-marathon like this” (he changed his story around mile 19). Next "Dude Sighting" was not suppose to be until Mile 18 but he heard me ask him to meet us at 13 with more drinks and nutrition. We passed the Team Z tent and continued on. I was feeling great and thought “easy-peasy, just have to do that one more time”. Our goal was to get to the half before the first person finished. Goal Achieved.
Miles 13.1 – 18
Nothing significant but I have to make fun of this woman in the white tank. She was doing the run/walk method so she’d speed by Jason and me, get way ahead then she’d walk. We’d eventually pass her and came up with the nickname Huffer. Her breathing was so loud and ragged when we’d pass – I swear, Zone 5. Eventually we stayed ahead of her and never heard the breathing again. Our next “Dude Sighting” came at 18, more liquids and some more PowerBar Jellies.
Every other mile SUCKED.
18-19=e-gads; 19-20=not so bad; 20-21=holy crap this hurts; 21-22=ok, I can do this; 22-23=very loud obscenities and lots of them; 23-24=I’ve lost feeling in my legs; 24-25= won’t this misery just end; 25-26.2=heaven, I’m in heaven, this race is DONE!
Sometime after 20 Jason and I both had our IPods in. So we were both singing really loud to drown each other out. I’m not sure if the other racers appreciated this as much as we did. That only lasted a mile. By mile 22 I barely had the energy to listen to the music, let alone sing.
Next “Dude Sighting” wasn’t supposed to be until mile 22 but it took us too long. Dude cycled back and met us around 21.5 and rode with us to the finish – yelling encouragement, and just keeping us company. Love, love, love that man!
Once we passed 25 we really picked up the pace. Got to the Team Z tent, did some high-fives, yelled out our burger order and continued running. We heard Iwan yell out, “You only have a mile to go”. Both Jason and I were like, WTF, it should only be ½ mile!
We got to the chute and started our sprint. We were full out running when Jason said “if I run any faster I’m gonna pull something”. We crossed the finish line and surprisingly no tears. I expected tears of joy.
Well, my race goals were Survive (Check), finish in less then 5 hours (5:03-but there was a potty break that probably took about 3 minutes, and test nutrition strategy (Check and spot-on).
Things nobody bothered to tell me:
After 26.2 miles of running you will forget how to walk.
There’s no easy way to stand up after using the bathroom after the race. I thought I’d be stuck in the stall forever.
There is a post marathon fog – I have no recollection of this picture being taken (and that’s only my 1st beer).
A hot tub is heaven!
The first step the morning after is shockingly painful!!!!
Your biceps will hurt – well, everything from the neck down will actually hurt.
It’s three days later and I already know I will do this again (aside from IMS). Yes it hurt and it was hard but looking back, it was kind of fun! Plus, in my 101 in 1001 I said I’d do three. One down, two to go!
I have to end by saying Dude is the greatest boyfriend ever and I am darn lucky to have him in my life. He sherpa’d my drinks and nutrition, he met us at 8,13, and 18, he rode with us (in the rain). He helped me get into my warm clothes after – it’s surprising how far away your feet are when you’re trying to take off your socks! He drove both ways with no complaints. He had dinner on Valentine’s Day with my former in-laws who were in town on vacation. He wins “Boyfriend of the Universe”!
Oh, and in case you were wondering – we never did make the strip clubs.
13 hours ago