Friday, November 28, 2014

Happy Black Friday?

I hope everyone had a good Thanksgiving. I had a pretty low key day and was in bed early to get to work early this morning for Black Friday. (The good thing about getting in early is leaving early!) The day wasn't awful.

I haven't really done too much since the marathon a few weeks ago so I was excited to do the Hingham Turkey Trot yesterday. It was a nice route that started at Hingham High School and went into Wompatuck State Park before heading back to the school. I felt in the zone and was fine just taking my time. It wasn't my fastest 5k, but it wasn't my slowest either. I really enjoyed ending the run on the track and then walking around it before exciting. I would do this race in the future for sure. (I'd show some pictures, but I didn't take any! I just enjoyed my time running.)

I signed up for a run in Salem. On March 21 I will be running the Nutty Irish 5k Cocoa Run. There will be hot chocolate (in flavors) at the end. If you are over 21 you can also add liquor into your cocoa. For pre-registering you receiving texting gloves. You also have the option to get a souvenir mug as well. I'm excited to spend more time around Massachusetts running in the upcoming year.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

NYC Marathon

I woke up at around 4 am on Sunday. I was tired. It was kind of cold. The clocks had changed. (Had they changed!?! I hope they changed!) I could hear the wind. (Freaking wind!) I took a quick shower to wake up and get a little warm. I needed to be at Central Park South by 6 am to catch the bus. The bus to Staten Island!

Walking through Times Square was so weird at 5 am. There were runners going in all different directions to get get their transportation to the start. I was told that it didn't matter which bus I got on so I hoped on the bus in front of me and in about 15 minutes we started to move. I fell asleep on the bus for a few minutes and before I knew it we were on the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge! We got off the bus just after 7 am and I made my way through security and found the charity village. Once there we were met with strong winds. We stayed as warm as possible while waiting for our waves to be called. I was in wave 4. I wasn't starting the marathon until 10:55 am. The 4 hours actually went by pretty quickly. Suddenly our wave was called. I made my way to the green corral and lined up by the letter D.
Party wave!!!!

All the sudden the beginning of the marathons was happening! The first 2 miles were on the bridge. I was on the lower level of the bridge which blocked the GPS signal to my watch. I wasn't too concerned with it except I couldn't quite use my pace bracelet. The wind on the bridge was CRAZY! I was literally getting pushed towards the median! 

Start line!
Fort Wadsworth with Manhattan in the back!

Once off the bridge we were in Brooklyn. (I happen to love Brooklyn and was excited to run through it!) I took everything in while running and just appreciated everyone who was out there supporting the runners. I tried to find a friend around mile 8, but didn't see him.

I remember mile 8 a little too well. I was really feeling it at that point. I think that I just hadn't eaten enough while I was waiting, but who knows. My pace was dropping and hard. I knew that I could only do my best and kept pushing through. I was excited when I got to the Queensboro Bridge because I knew that I was going to finish. Nate also surprised me at the end of the bridge. I wasn't expecting to see him out on the course so I was excited. I remember telling him I just wanted to be done and that everything was hurting. First Ave seemed like forever. It is a straight shot and you can just see for miles. This made it hard to keep positive and moving in general.

When I got back into Manhattan I got my groove back. I was able to keep a better pace and up with my intervals. I can remember seeing Central Park in the distance and feeling like it took forever to get there.
Once I got into the park it was a wonderful feeling of knowing I was going to be done soon!

Soon I could see the finish line. Then I saw the tracking map and ran over it. When I looked up at the finish banner I saw it change to "Thank You, Charity Runners!" It seemed fitting for sure. I checked the app and saw that I finished in 6:05:57.

You are so welcome!
I walked up got my medal and started to cry. Why did I cry? I was happy. I was happy to be done. I was happy to have made it. I was happy that the hardest thing I've ever done was over. I was happy to get out of the wind and cold. (I didn't know that it would take me over an hour to get back to the hotel. Who decided all of this walking pre- and post-race was worth it!?!) I was crying out of relief. I just needed to cry. Then I cried because I couldn't get my bottle of water open. Then the flip top didn't open enough and that really pushed me from annoyed to pissed. I could have just grabbed water off of my belt, but I'm too stubborn for that. Finally I got my finishers poncho and it was the best thing ever! It is so warm! (I can wear it now that I'm home on the reg right?)

I'm not sleeping. I'm just laying, in a poncho.
There were 50, 564 finishers.
And I was one of them!

It hit me today (which is Wednesday the 5th) that I finished the NYC Marathon. Did I finish? Yes. Did I finish in under 6 hours? No, but the wind was a wench so I can let that go. Maybe one day I'll complete a marathon in 5:30 (which was my goal pace). Honestly I'm fine never doing a marathon again. Given the opportunity, sure I'll do it.

As of right now at 8 pm on Wednesday November 5 I have raised $3,685 for Children's Hospital! There is a few more donations coming through so I should have at least $3,700! I can't believe I got that much money for such a wonderful cause! If you didn't get an opportunity to donate or would like to donate again you can do so right here!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

NYC Marathon Expo!

I was planning on writing this post about the whole weekend, but honestly I'm just tired. So lets focus on one day at a time!

On Saturday Nate & I boarded a train to head to NYC. I was able to check-in to our hotel the day before online which was awesome because our room was ready before we even got to NYC! We decided to check-in first and then head over to the expo. When we got to NYC it was raining, but I was okay with it. After we dropped our stuff in the room we headed over to the Javits Center to get my bib.
Our hotel had some pretty awesome pumpkins in the lobby!

I was surprisingly not scared or nervous or anything. I felt calm when I got to NYC. The first thing we did when we got into the Javits Center was pick up my bib and my bag for the start village. I got my bib scanned to make sure the B-Tags were working so people could actually track me on Sunday. (They were working perfectly!) We exited into the ASICS area and I picked out a shirt. I kept away from anywhere that could show the medal. I wanted to keep it a surprise. We walked through our the expo and I grabbed a Sparkly Soul headband. I also got to meet Katherine Switzer!  If you don't know who she is you should! She was the first registered woman to run the Boston Marathon! (You know when woman weren't allowed to run!) She signed her book and took pictures with everyone. She was so nice and was rooting for us. We left the expo shortly after to go relax and grab dinner. I did have an early day and a marathon to run!

I'll leave you with some pictures to tie you over until I get to my NYC Marathon post!
This is the headband I chose to wear during the marathon.
Who doesn't get a picture with the course map!?!
I'd never be this close to a finish line tape ever again!

Katherine Switzer & I!