Ya see my person is Jessica, ya'll know her, we are like peas and carrots, sisters from another mister, finish each other sentences, can tell what the other is thinking without saying a word. But we do have our differences as well. She is my running partner. We basically know each other's running habits better than we know our own. Out of the blue one day she said "you want to do a marathon?" I looked at her like she had lost her mind, and my exact words, sorry for the language.."hell no!!!!!" She started dying laughing!!! That ended that conversation until about 2 weeks later she asked again, same response. This soon started to be a weekly question, and she got the same answer! I told her that I would run the first half with her and support her, do what I could for her and be at the finish line when she crossed it. But life happens. I was on training week 6. Carter was on the high school cross country team; they had practices 4 days a week, an away meet every week. Maddie had dance and tumble 2 days a week. Started getting dark earlier, homework, chores, laundry, cooking dinner, being a wife.....it is called life.
I would have loved to been able to run but I wanted to see my kids activities and see them achieve as well. So I decided that I would sit this one out.
I went on several of her training runs with her, or she would have a long run and I would either start the run with her or jump in at the end of run and do the last 4-5 miles with her. Fast Forward about 6 weeks to the day of the marathon, the BG26.2 held in Bowling Green, KY. She had did all her training and all that was left was for her to cross that line.
I had bought her a nice glittery new sticker for her hummer it was pink and said 26.2!! I couldn't wait to give it to her. One of our very good friends Katie was doing the Half. She was going to run the first half with her. It was Katie's first half and she rocked it!!! Our other good friend Teri was going to jump in and do the second half. Jessica had arranged with the race coordinator about the timing so Teri just ran through the shoot to activate her chip.
Teri hadn't trained with Katie or Jessica and she wasn't as prepared, but she has ran a half marathon before so she wasn't going into it blind. While we were waiting for her to come around the corner to finish 13.1 Teri said she hoped she could finish. I said I am just jealous and wished I was out there!!!
|Katie and Jessica about to cross the 13.1 point!|
Jessica's husband and son had gotten there by this point. Teri called my cell phone and said I am walking I have cramped and I can't run at this point. She said you have to meet her!! I was like WHAT!!!!???? So that is when I knew I was going to have to run!!! Luckily I had on some yoga/exercise pants, an Under Armour long sleeve tech, and my Mizunos. But one of the most important things a GIRL needs I was lacking...yeah the tatas were all over the place!!!
|a selfie while we were running!! we were on mile 24!! She is still all smiles!! I looked like I was straining to poop or something!!!!|
Jessica wrote a re-cap of the race and this next bit is in her words, I think she tells it better than I could:
"As we passed mile 20, I couldn’t help but dread the next subdivision. I made it through the subdivision just fine, continuing to hold that pace. I noticed that Teri was pulling back at this point. She was cramping. It happens to so many people. So many. She continued to pull back- I didn’t think too much about it until my phone rang. It was Teri. Teri said “don’t you stop! You keep going!” She knew and I knew and this point on mile 21 if I pulled back or stopped, I was done! I had been going forward for 4 hours and 35 minutes- going for that long, you just CAN’T STOP. It was a terrible feeling but I also knew she would finish. I pushed through and made it back to the main highway. I pushed, and pushed. Running solo.
Pink shirt---From a distance, somewhere between mile 22 and 23 I could see a person waving their hands in a pink shirt and headed my direction. What? Who else other than Kelly Jo wearing a bright pink shirt. The person who from the beginning, months back said “I’ll see you at the end.” This was not “the end” we planned. This was the “new end” because life happened. Runners get cramps all the time. Our plan was Kelly Jo be at the finish line to see me and Teri cross not cross the line, not with me. She was supposed to hand me a 26.2 sticker. Life happened and now she is running with me. She is running unprepared, attire being “unprepared” is the best way to put it. Life just happens there is no other way to explain it. There she stood. I said “Don’t you kill me!” Me saying “don’t you kill me” means, she has fresh legs and I’m pretty sure I’m hitting a wall or something! We ran, she talked, she took pictures, she was texting, I just listened. We passed JT, mine and Kelly’s little boys standing, watching us and cheering us on holding signs, that read “GO MOM GO!!! It was the sweetest. The boys were proud and JT was really enjoying it, he was smiling so big. He was proud, I was proud. JT helped me so much with my training- he encouraged me, supported me, checked in on my long runs. He helped with the kids (Mr. Mom always does) and there he stood along the course- cheering me on. Smiling.
I had felt amazing until this point. I had pushed along, no walls, nothing crazy (well beside my music irony) but something about mile 23 and 24. You are so close to being done and you know that. Even being at mile 23 and 24 you still have a distance to go. You just have to run. Run, run, and tell yourself to run, do not stop! Kelly knows my run habits better than I do. Around that mile I wanted to stop, I wasn’t in excruciating pain but I had been running for almost five nonstop hours. Did I say I have boundless energy and endurance? Well, I questioned it at this point. I was ok overall, but I was ready to stop. I said “Just get me to the finish line, Kelly”. I could hear my music “And we'll never be royals (royals) It don't run in our blood That kind of lux just ain't for us, we crave a different kind of buzz Let me be your ruler (ruler) You can call me queen bee And baby I'll rule, I'll rule, I'll rule, I'll rule …Let me live that fantasy” I love this song, don’t get me wrong but I wanted something strong at this point. There was no way to turn the song, I just had to sing, so I did.
My wall-I assume mile 23 and 24 was a wall. It was brick, concrete studded, wrapped in barbwire with a couple pit-bulls biting my calves at the gate. My wall appeared late, thank goodness. I will thank that 20 miler in the rain for making me tougher than I thought! On mile 25.25 I tore the wall down- I busted it! Aerosmith “Dream On” was taking me to the finish line. That song will hold a special meaning now. “Listen, dream on, dream on, dream on Dream until the dream come true Yea, dream on, dream on, dream on”. When I rounded the corner, I stripped the Garmin off and handed it to Kelly.
26 mile sign, I rounded my very last and final turn. Kelly said “take your ear buds out and listen to them cheer for you!” There it was, all of it, I could hear everyone, see everyone and I could see the finish line. I just wanted to run and cry- so I did just that. I ran and I cried. I didn’t think about what the last 5/6 months consisted of. It was tears of joy, excitement and the feeling of accomplishment. I can’t describe really how it felt to turn and see Sharna surprise me by being there at the finish line along with everyone else. My big hug from JT. Kruz was so proud!
|Kruz and Carter|
And minutes later, Teri finished her 13.1. Everything we worked for was right there.
I can never thank those who logged in miles with me. Katie and the start, Teri in the middle and Kelly Jo those last four miles. I think it’s strange how something’s work out. I had wondered if I would feel like it was worth it? It was. Will I do it again? As soon as someone ask me to do it with them. I see it happening. It was worth it."
|crossing the line!!!!|
|Teri, Katie, Jessica, and me|
|the finisher!!! I am soooo super proud of this chick, and proud to call her my Person|
So that was the time I crossed the finish line of a marathon and only ran 4 miles!! But I think that me crossing the finish line couldn't be any more emotional than I was this day!!!
Sorry for a very wordy, lengthy post, but I wanted to get it down, so I wouldn't forget it!!!!