Can we say cold? It had been dropping in temps all week. Cara, my running friend, and I ran a few times trying to figure out what we were going to wear for the CIM, as we were running in 27 degree temps and heard the morning of the CIM was going to be bone-chilling cold!! I’m glad I was able to practice in those temps and come up with the least amount, but enough clothing to keep me warm, but not too warm!!!
We left our home at 4:15 to pick up the girls and their husbands and my sweet little Allie, in Placerville. Praying that we would not slide off the road.
We didn’t . . . but not exactly the before-the-race-calm moments that I needed!!
We picked up the shuttle bus in Folsom to take us to the start and actually timed it perfect to get on the last bus group going and we only waited about 10 minutes in the brrrrrr . . . cold before the race started!! Didn’t have a chance to visit my fav spot, those special porta-potties, but I knew I would see them again on the run.
I took this picture right before the start of the race . . . and can we say – emotional moment!!! Amazing moment!! I was about to run my first marathon with my girls . . . doesn’t get much better than this . . . hence, the tears began . . .
To our surprise it was actually warmer at the start a nice warm 33 degrees, 8 degrees higher than expected!! Yay!!! Little did we know at that moment that the temps would drop as we ran, down into the 20’s. But . . . ignorance is bliss, right?!!!
We lined up with the 4:55 pacer and after my (few-miles-in-and-the-lines-don’t-look-too-long) porta-potty stop, we ended up tracking right along with the 5:25 pacer. It was cold, but not unbearable. I tossed an old sweatshirt I was wearing about mile 6. The girls ended up passing some of their outer layers to their husbands along the way. It seemed like it warmed up a bit in the sun before the half-way point and then got colder with a bit of a north-wind the second half.
Seeing my little Allie made me smile even bigger than I already was. We had a great cheering crew. Mike (my husband), Matt (Jenna’s husband) with sweetie Allie, Joey (Emmi’s husband), and Teri (Steve’s wife – Steve was running his first marathon ever with his two kids. They rocked their marathon). They should receive a medal of honor for standing in the cold to see us, take pics, cheer us on . . . they are the best!! Thank you!!! Thank you!!!
The picture of all three of us was at the 20 mile point. I think a few of the smiles may be fake, not sure . . .
It was always easier to smile when we saw our cheering team there for us.
For fueling, I have been using a product called UCAN – I love it!!! It is made from cornstarch and no sugar. It kept me at an even energy level with no highs and lows, which I experience with too much sugar. It surprised me that I needed to take it sooner than I expected. Not having run in such cold temps for that length of time before, I learned that my body needs more of everything . . . I must have been burning calories just trying to stay warm. At mile 22, I believe, I took a V-fuel, which is a gel, for that added boost I so desperately needed and at mile 23 I sucked on a strawberry-banana gel they were handing out . . . can’t recommend that flavor, but the effect was great!!!
Two very cool things: Deborah, who you have seen in previous blogs of mine, wasn’t running, but was CHP on duty at mile 11 or 12. It was so cool seeing her in uniform and hugging her. She even ran a few steps with me in all her heavy gear!!! I love you, Deb!! Thanks for working in the cold that day to keep us safe and give us hugs!!!
The next was Kari, another dear running friend, who showed up at mile 23. I knew she said to watch for the yellow sign, but honestly at that point I think I was in a daze of some sort . . . I remember looking to my left and seeing yellow and Vander Dussen on a sign and wondering who else was there with that name, when Kari came running up to me with the sign. I started crying . . . smiling . . . laughing . . . she ran with us for a mile!!! What a treat . . . what a gift . . . she was at the perfect place at the perfect time. Thank you, Kari, Alex, and Max for braving the cold to cheer us on!! You made a difference!! You kept my smile going!!!
We did lose sight of the 5:25 pacer, but Kari assured me he was just about a minute ahead. I looked at the girls with that look of ‘lets catch up’ and they gave me that look of . . . are you crazy?!!!!
I’m just amazed at how long and straight L Street is. It seemed like it just went on forever. I kept asking Jenna, who is familiar with downtown Sacramento, “Do we turn here, do we turn here?” and she patiently would respond, “No, mom, but soon”. . . she said that for what seemed forever!!! Jenna reminded me that as soon as we round the corner the finish line will be right there . . . it was . . . yep, the tears flowed again . . . we ran the last .2 side-by-side wearing shirts that said “Persevere” and we held hands and raised them as we crossed the finish line together. 5 hours, 25 minutes, and 54 seconds after we crossed the starting line we crossed the finish line. Okay, now I have tears again remembering that amazing moment!!
I received my CIM 26.2 medal around my neck and joined the wonderful group of marathon runners at that moment!!! I AM A MARATHONER!!
After any long run, I have to keep walking for at least 10 minutes. Mike had my UCAN recovery drink for me and walked with me, trying to find the sun to warm up. They also had a nicely spiced tomato soup with bread at the end. How perfect was that?!!!
This was the perfect celebration for this season in my life, which God has given me. He has proven Himself faithful. He has gifted me with good times and bad times, but He has been with me every moment of every day in the midst of it all. God gave me this verse back in July 1981 and I have held it closely –
“Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling, and to make you stand in the presence of His glory blameless with great joy, to the only God our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen. ” Jude 24-25
I love this pic . . . it says it all . . . It’s all for you, God!!
He has kept me from stumbling and He has kept me standing!!!
Through my race, I held close in my heart so many . . . remembering them . . . praying for them . . . trusting God’s plan for them . . .
I have many more thoughts and things to share about this amazing experience, which will wait, as I process that I have just run 26.2 miles and am a Marathoner!! Woohoo!!!