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A Goal Not Reached- Grandma’s Marathon

June 21, 2014

Well it is a little over 12 hours after the marathon… I would be lying if I said I wasn’t bummed!! I was on my 6:10-6:12 pace up until mile 20 and then my legs felt like a ton of bricks! I didn’t hit the wall but my body just gave out. I felt like I was lacking something… I have never felt like this before… Throughout the 1st 19 miles I felt strong, my thoughts were positive and I knew I was going to hit my mark of 2:42…

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We had a good group of women all going for the same goal. My 1st 10k was 38:26, my 1/2 marathon was 1:21.46, & at 19 miles I ran a 1:56.33. Then it hit. I began to feel a little light headed and I couldn’t get enough water at the water/aid stations. The second I ran past the water station I was wanting more. As I stated earlier my legs just felt like they stopped working. Oh I forgot to add that within the 1st 2 miles I accidentally dropped my shot blocks and at mile 7 where I had my 1st bottle of XOJO at the “elite” table, I missed grabbing it. I kept thinking, ok, no big deal… I had a gu and a caffeine strip left. I took my caffeine strip at mile 11 and it was great!!! I wish, wish I had another strip for mile 19! (But I know that caffeine can make you more dehydrated :/). Anyway… The weather was great today… Perfect temperatures and a fog coverage. The humidity was 93%. We had a very light head wind but nothing big to hold you back or effect you (it was 2-5 mph). It was beautiful out and being in this atmosphere was magical! So many excellent runners trying for the same goal!

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So why did I crash so hard and so sudden? I felt dehydrated and I didn’t have enough food/calories. I didn’t drink at all this morning and I couldn’t stomach down a decent breakfast. Yesterday I didn’t drink to much either… To be honest, I was afraid I would have to go to the bathroom while I was running! Dumb, right! I’m going to break up my last 10k… The 1st 5 miles of it was about an 8 minute pace. But at mile 24 and 25 I kept blacking out. I would be running and everything would start to spin around, I wouldn’t be able to see (I’m guessing for about 1 to 2 seconds), so I would have to shake my head to see straight. It was the weirdest feeling because I knew that I was not doing well but my body/legs kept moving forward. I felt like I wasn’t really there but yeah… It is really hard to explain. My last mile was a 10 minute mile. I finished and one of the volunteer helpers ran over to me… Right when I leaned on him my legs gave out and I pretty much dropped on him. I was so dizzy and couldn’t see straight. Oh why we runners do this to ourselves :).

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In the tent (which Corom was not allowed in), my legs, feet and back (even my ribs) starting to seize up-Charlie horse. It was so bad… Due to no water!!! I guess I was in there for 55 minutes with the medics and a physical therapist filling me with liquids and rubbing/stretching my legs. Oh and my feet hurt so bad when they took my shoes off! I was able to get up after that time and walk out without the dizziness and blackouts. Oh it was not fun!!! When I walked out… I saw Corom standing there and I just broke down! I could not stop the tears. Yes I was so sad and disappointed knowing that I was so close and felt so good. I really, really thought I had that Olympic Trials qualifying time! I really did… And to see it slip away so quickly (because it really hit me fast and hard), I didn’t realize how sad I was until I saw Corom!

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We hung out there for a while, Corom grabbing all the food for me to refuel (the lady in the tent gave me a slice of pizza…so good)… We eventually went back to our dorm room, I showered and then crashed into a good nap for awhile. Back to the morning… I did meet up with Amber Green. We rode the bus up and everything. She, too, was on pace. We were within a few seconds of each other until mile 20. She was able to keep going but also felt a little blah. I guess when I finished, that was the 1st question I asked Corom, was if she made the time. She barely missed it and I was truly sad for her. She deserved it!!! She is a strong runner and it was so fun to hang out/run with her. Amazing person! We will go to the trials together!

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The top 2 pictures and the bottom left were at the hotel where the “elite” bus picked us up. The bottom right is Amber in the blue tank top and pink shorts and I am in the white tank top a little behind at mile 15 I believe. Corom showed up at so many places during the course! He was amazing and so helpful (at mile 21 or 22… He had “Sail Away” from Enya playing… Love that song)… Anyway, after my nap, Corom and I met up with Amber at the awards ceremony (amazing runners) and then we all went and grabbed Mexican food.

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Then we hung out after dinner for awhile and Corom and I headed back to the dorms. We have met so many great people here. A great experience here. As I stated earlier… I am bummed about the results, but something did spark in me knowing that I can do it! I will take this experience and grow and use it as a positive!!! I am so grateful for everyone for supporting me and helping me through this!!!
Grandma!!!

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From → Running

5 Comments
  1. allie permalink

    Hi Jen. Congratulations on your race. I am sorry you fell short of the OTQ goal, but that was a very impressive run. The last 10k sounds intense and scary with the blacking out, etc. I admire your determination and grit to forge ahead and finish the race. The fact that you were on pace through 20 shows your strength and your ability to get the OTQ. I hope to see you give this another go — you can definitely hit that standard. Great job out there.

  2. Makelle permalink

    Oh Jen. I am so sorry about that. It must be heart breaking to give it all you have but to still come up short. Sorry. You truly are inspirational.

  3. Anonymous permalink

    You are still a rock star Jen! I’ve loved reading your daily posts about all your training…..there are very few that can do what you do! Chin up….recover well! You’ve still got it in you!

  4. Toby permalink

    The above post was from Toby…not anonymous 🙂

  5. Rock and I have been feverishly following you. He read your post and said to make sure I read it and sent you a note. First I am so glad you are ok. So scary. The humidity just is a killer. I can’t imagine how disappointing your finish was but I absolutely think you are right that you can meet your goal. Your level of overall fitness is incredible! So glad Corom was there with you too. It helps to have your best friend there during those times. They just “get” it. And glad you two had some fun together afterwards. Take care of yourself!

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