1.14.2014

Race 1, #14in2014: WDW Marathon Race Recap

Starting line!
I closed my 2013 running year with a marathon and has opened the 2014 running year with another marathon.  Yes, hubby and I just finished our second marathon at the Walt Disney World Marathon.  You may read about our first one six weeks ago at the Space Coast Marathon here.

The weekend started with us hitting the expo to pick up our bibs and race gear.  It was held at the Wide World of Sports.  We made it there with 45 minutes to spare!  The expo was full of vendors for fitness and running merchandise most of which we have seen before.  Since we didn't need anything else, we left soon after getting our race bib and decided to eat an early dinner.

Our pre marathon dinner was a Thanksgiving sandwich...turkey, mashed potatoes, gravy, cranberry sauce and stuffing!  We asked for a high carb sandwich and I say this one fits the bill!  We got to our hotel room around 7 pm.  Since this is our second marathon and fourth long distance run, we were quite efficient with our pre race preps.With a 3 am wake up to get on the bus by 4 am, we methodically laid out our race gear.  Learning from my experience at Space Coast, I put KT Tape on both feet and both knees this time.  I also put band aid on my left pinky toe!  Ralph and I were in bed by 10 pm.  Sleep, however, was elusive for another 2 hours!  I counted to a hundred 3 times.  When that didn't work I started salivating thinking of what I want for lunch after the race.  It was going back and forth between dimsum and crispy pata, marinated bangus and sinigang!  Eventually, I heard the alarm go off at 3 am and got ready.

My race gear!
The line was already long when we got to the bus loop.  As always, runners come in costumes and some always give us a good laugh!  Traffic was already heavy at 4 in the morning!  We got to the start zone, checked our gear bag, went potty and walked to our corral.  We were in corral N this time, two up from the last corral P.  By the time we got there, runners in corral B were already on their way.  This was at 5:30 am!  It wasn't until 6:35 am that ours was finally on our way.

The weather at race time was in the upper 50s and forecast to stay in the low 70s with low humidity.  It was perfect running weather.  However, when we got to mile 1, Ralph says, "it's only mile 1"? I smelled trouble.  We kept our normal 1:1 of run:walk interval at what we thought was a comfortable pace of 14 min/mile.  We both did not wear compression pants to avoid stopping for potty breaks.  However, as soon as we got to Mile 2, I already needed to go and so did a few other runners.  It must be nerves because between miles 1 and 3, a lot of runners were already lined up at every porta potty and those who couldn't wait, line up by the bushes.  This time, I couldn't wait for the porta potty and when you gotta go, you gotta go. So I shamelessly went behind a giant post while the monorail rolled above.  This pit stop would keep me from going again until Mile 17!
At Main Street USA, Magic Kingdom, between mile 5 and 6
The run from the start at EPCOT to Magic Kingdom to the Speedway, and through Animal Kingdom was uneventful.  Well, except for a short stop to put band aid on the toe next to my left pinky toe around Mile 5!  Trouble started around mile 17 when we were on our way into Wide World of Sports!  I had to use the potty again! There were no more posts around and no bushes tall enough to hide from view.  Just ahead I spotted a lone porta potty that had no one in line!  I slowly walked towards it when, zoom, two runners ran past me and made it there first!! Needless to say, I lost time waiting for my turn.  When I got out, I sensed some apprehension in the air among runners.  We found out the balloon ladies were closing in. Balloon ladies run at a 16 min/mi pace. Run behind the balloon ladies and you run the risk of getting picked up and brought to the finish line in a bus!  We picked up our pace and thought we were way ahead until we got inside Hollywood Studios around mile 22.

At this time my legs were really tired, the bottom of my feet were screaming for mercy and I was getting hungry.  I found out later that Ralph was hurting now, too.  His hamstrings were cramping and hips were hurting. We get into the costume building at HS and the runners were walking because the space is tight and dark. Ralph was walking behind me and I was concentrating on not tripping over another runner.  Suddenly, "You have 3 minutes to get to the next mile marker and this space is going to slow you down!" says the BALLOON LADY!!!  My heart almost jumped out of my chest!  They are shoulder to shoulder with us!  I started running (more like jogging), weaving through other runners trying to get as far ahead from the balloon ladies as I could.  All this time I thought Ralph was running behind me.  I look back and he's nowhere in sight!  I run back and I see him with a dazed look on his face.  I approached him and told him that we had to get going.  He didn't seem to be too concerned and I don't even think he heard me.  He just stared at me blankly. I grabbed his harm, pulled him, and ran!  We ran, well shuffled our feet, from mile 22.5 to 24 on tired and achy feet!  At this point the balloon ladies passed us and told us we were safe!  Whew!  What a close call!

The last two miles seemed like an eternity.  Actually getting to mile 25 seemed like an eternity!  We tried to keep our run/walk intervals but it was more like walk, walk, walk/run interval!  The adrenaline rush of trying to stay ahead of the balloon ladies was gone and we were hurting even more.  However, no matter how tired or in pain you are, seeing the finish line still gives you that one last burst of energy to run to it.  Holding hands, we painfully ran and crossed the finish line and finished our second marathon!

It took 7 hours and 24 minutes to get to the finish line, but we finished!  We are marathoners!

 Marathon bling!

 We finished!

Lessons learned:

1.  Running two marathons within 6 weeks of each other is not a good idea.
2.  Running two marathons within 6 weeks of each other without training is worse.
3.  Gender equality exists in using the bushes to do No. 1!
4.  You might as well put a band aid on all 10 toes!  If not one, its the other that will blister!
5.  When you see the balloon ladies, run!
6.  "No way will I do this again" changes to "Let's do Dopey next year" within 24 hours after you finish a marathon.
7.  Walking like you are carrying something heavy between your legs the day after a marathon is getting old.
8.  Warning:  Lemon Lime flavored Clif Shot will make you gag!
9.  Gummy bears and mini chocolate bars at mile 22.5, yeah!
10.  Volunteers!  They are the heroes on the course!

Thank you for sharing in my adventures in running.  Till the next run!
Joy

2 comments:

  1. Congratulations on finishing!! I was volunteering on the course Sunday at mile 12.9. I remember seeing you because I liked your shirt and your Sparkleskirt. You looked great when I saw you. Great Job!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thank you! That was when we also still felt good:-) It went downhill after mile 20. Thank you for volunteering. You are all awesome!

    ReplyDelete