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CIM Marathon… My Last Shot For The Olympic Trials 

December 7, 2015

Sunday 6th: I got up at 3:45 a.m. To get ready for the race. By 4:45, Corom dropped me off at the bus. Once again the nervous energy was strong in the tent… This is everyone’s last shot at qualifying for trials. Oh the stress but it’s an exciting stress if that makes sense. 
 What was really neat was I knew at least 5-6 other ladies in there from all over the U.S. that I have met at other races (and a few more from Utah). I love the friendships that have been made and are made through running. What is even more amazing is how we all helped each other out out there. It’s not about placing during these races, it’s all about the time! Throughout the race, everyone was sharing their personalized water bottles, extra gu’s and everyone was full of encouragement. We had a pacer that was running an even 6:13 split (the Olympic Trial B Standards), I ran with the group for the 1st 14 miles. At mile 14 I really began to struggle mentally (even before the physical hardness set in). (The picture below was the 1st place female.) 

 I decided that from mile 14 to 20, I would back off and hold onto a slower pace. I averaged a 6:21 for those 6 miles. My plan was at mile 20 to pick back up and hold on to a 6:03 pace to finish in the time I needed. That “was” the plan. 😔 My legs and well entire body was tired (mentally and physically). At mile 20 I was unable to pick it up To the 6:03 pace, so I maintained the 6:21 pace for another mile. I was battling some major demons in this race but I didn’t want to not finish. I knew I had to keep going and so each mile I pushed through. I saw my coach throughout the course (there were 4 other ladies out there that he coaches… It was fun meeting up with them and meeting a few for the 1st time). That helped! I saw Corom shortly after mile 22. I looked at my watch and saw that I had 20 minutes before the 2:42.59 time and 4 miles left… I knew I would not be able to make/catch up to the time I needed. I didn’t have the energy to pick it up much. It was a hard thing to take in… As I came up to mile 22 1/2-23 I saw a good running friend of mine. She said she felt like she was going to pass out… I ran on a little bit but about 30 things went through my head (in a matter of seconds). The few main ones: 

1st: Do I turn back and help her…

2nd: Do I continue on and go for a PR. 

3rd: I keep slowing down so I won’t hit a PR so why not just go back.

4th: If I keep running I will get done sooner.

5th: I even worried about if my time would look “bad”. I know that probably sounds shallow and lame but it crossed my mind a few times (even after I went back to run with her). I know I’m weird! 😉 

6th: I’m not going to get the qualifying time so who cares about a PR and go run with her…

So I chose the latter… I wasn’t going to hit the time I wanted and went back and ran with her for about 2 1/2 miles.  

She wasn’t doing to well. There were times we had to walk because she couldn’t see to well. I’ve been there (at the Grandma’s marathon in Deluth) and it is scary and frustrating. Maybe it was dumb of me not to try for a PR but it was nice to be able to run with a friend. 

 With a little less than a mile to go, I ran it in and waited at the finish line for her (her husband met up with back at that point). It was a bitter sweet race. I knew coming in to this race that it would be an uphill battle. I’ve been running/training on tired legs since Chicago with very little of a break. And there were many times in the 5 weeks sincs Chicago where I wanted to be done. I would ask myself why I was still training. But I knew if I didn’t do it then I would always wonder “What If”! So I gave it one more shot for the Olympic Trials and just couldn’t do it. The marathon is a beast of a race! And I have yet to conquer it! On a good note… They lost my toss bag and somehow it ended up in the VIP section. The VIP section was in a center for all the top racers. The ones that placed in the top 10 or 15 (the Kenyan team was in there and the top Americans, the pacers were in there, race directors, etc). Corom and I were able to stay for the huge breakfast they provided for the VIP’s. We were able to take advantage of the massages if we wanted and the luxury of the things provided. The pacer I tried to stay with and his wife (she qualified for the trials) sat with us. I was going to take their picture but I didn’t want them to think I was a creeper. 🙂 

 We left after brunch and headed back to Utah! We made just a few stops and got in at 9:45 p.m. I had so many different emotions going on in my head on the drive home. This will be tougher than what I thought it would be! But it is what it is and I had fun trying! Corom and I did have a good time being able to talk without any interruptions or distractions. It was a nice drive. We came home to a fun prank on our doorstep.  

 All the things on the plate was eaten and the rootbeer was almost all gone. 🙂 We visited with my sister for a little while and then to bed. 

From → Running

6 Comments
  1. wow that sounds like a rough race! Sorry you didn’t make the goal you were hoping for – it is still extremely impressive in my book! That was really nice of you to run with your friend when she felt so crappy.

    • Thank you for this. It was rough and I’m glad it is over with. It was nice to be able to sleep in this morning. 😉 It was a lot of fun to run with her! Thanks again.

  2. There is just so much here that makes me adore you. First of all, I am amazed that you were able to run so many great races after that frustrating injury earlier this year. Second, your feelings and emotions towards the end of the race were real and yours and you are ANYTHING but shallow. Of course you wanted to go for that PR. And most people would have gone for it. But when I read your mental conversation and the thoughts you had going on, I knew before I read on what you would choose to do. I have been blogging and following blogs for two years and yours is the one I look the most forward to and you are the blogger I have been looking forward to meeting for so long. You are real. You are you. And you are one heck of a runner! But you are also a truly wonderful person. You are a great mom and wife and friend and are deeply rooted in your faith. I am so sorry you didn’t reach your goal but you are a true winner in my book!

    • Sarah… I didn’t know how to respond to this. Thank you! Thank you for so many reasons… For writing this message to me, for being a good friend, for being the example you are to me and everyone, and for being you. You are beautiful inside and out! You always seem to know what to say when I need the most encouraging. Thank you! Love you!

  3. Ashley Solis permalink

    You’re so real & amazing, Jen ! In my humble opinion, you have most definitely conquered those beastly marathons !! Your marathon times are out of this world, my dear !! I thoroughly apologize for not coming out to cheer for you, friend 😦 But, I thought about you a million times on Sunday just wondering about you & hoping for the very best. I’m sorry you struggled. It makes me sad, but you gave it your all, everything you had! Now you don’t have any regrets. And you’ll never have to wonder “what if?!” Sounds like you have learned so much about yourself through this process of training & racing. I giggled out loud at your mental check list of about 30 thoughts that fly through your head all at once while running. I’ve had that happen so many times during my runs (pretty much why I love running.) I’m so impressed, yet not a bit surprised that you held back to help your friend. That’s just the kind of person you are !

    • Ashley… 1st off don’t apologize. I really kept it on the down low even in the blog. 🙂 I knew this marathon would be tougher than others. I don’t know what to say or how to begin. You are an amazing person and I am so glad we have gotten to know each other! Thank you for everything! Your friendship, support and kind words. You have no idea how much it means to me. Thank you!

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