Monday, December 30, 2013

Run For the Ranch Recap / My First Marathon

Saturday, December 28th 2013 I ran my first 26.2 in Springfield, MO. I was supposed to run the St. Jude full this year but due to the unfortunate weather - it was canceled - so I signed myself up the next closest marathon - and Springfield it was... I have dedicated my life since July to training and NOTHING was going to stop me from putting 26.2 under my feet. Shall we re-cap?

The Day/Night Before the Marathon...
Friday morning, the family and I left for Springfield (about a 3 1/2 hr drive from home). Packet pickup went off without a hitch and the hotel was nice with an indoor pool for the kids to tire themselves out. I ate dinner the night before: a steak, baked potato, salad, and bread. I also loaded up on water that whole week prior. That night I laid out my running attire - I was definitely running in my St. Jude shirt and pinning the St. Jude bib to my back - it just made sense. The weather was unseasonably warm so I was able to wear shorts with my purple Pro Compression socks - YAY! I am a minimalist when it comes to racing. I just need my shoes, a good hat (did you know you waste energy squinting?), well made sports bra, Vaseline (for my whole body), and my loom that Elle made me (it's my security blanket). Dinner was good and I got to bed at a decent hour (after yelling at the kids 72 times to stop kicking one another and hit the hay). I was ready.

Race Day
Saturday morning I woke up around 6:30 AM or so and drank my cup of coffee, got my gear on, and started drinking my water. I ate breakfast (bagel with cream cheese, banana, and 1 hard boiled egg) around 8:00 AM. We loaded up the car and got the kids ready for their big day at Bass Pro with E:) We headed out and got to MSU Campus around 9:30 AM or so. The kids wanted to see me take off. I met up with Theresa and her husband before and we chatted for bit - she is a doll. She was running another half - she is a HALF FANATIC, literally. Snapped some pics with the family (and Theresa) and it was go time.




I chose not to wear my headphones for the first half of the race. The first 16 miles were good - I was doing around a 10:00-10:30 pace - I did go under 10:00 a few of those miles. The course is a loop of 3.2 flat miles and I was unsure how I would like this. I hydrated every 1.5 miles - water, then Gatorade, then water, etc... You ran through neighborhoods around the MSU Campus and there were quite a few turns but it was a really beautiful day to run and I was enjoying the scenery. Those doing the half tapered off after the 4th loop as they finished, and the marathoners became scarce. This was a smaller race - about 200 doing the half and about 115 doing the full. As I rounded the 6th loop around mile 18 I heard "mommy, mommy, go mommy go" and at that moment I had that knot in the throat, eyes starting to fill with water, heart growing bigger moment. It WAS MY BABIES and....they ran onto the course. At that moment I had two options - cry and lose all my water that I have been trying to keep in or yell at them to get off the course - hahaha. I slapped their hands, laughed, and told them to be careful and get on the sidewalk so racers can get through. Mile 18 I heard was the hardest, but seeing them made this mile the BEST. I turned up my tunes and thought SEE YA baby I AM doing this...


I kept running (slowed a little) - mile 19 passed, mile 20 passed, 21 passed (I saw the kids again and I put up one finger - like ONE MORE LOOP BABY)... and then 22 hit and I had the strangest feeling. I felt like I was going to get sick. I started sweating that icky "your going to puke" sweat and my tongue got really heavy. My heart started racing and I felt like I was going to pass out. I kept telling myself - "keep going"... but I knew I was about to get sick on some one's lawn so I took a moment to let my feet hit the ground, catch my breath, and get my mind right... I walked at a fast pace for about 30 seconds and picked it back up - MUCH slower pace but hey... I was ALMOST there. I wasn't sure if I hydrated too much, motion sickness (you know how BAD mine is), too little/too much Gu Chomps, or what? Mile 23-24 got better - I was running - slower... but I was still out there - mile 25 was a blur... and as I rounded the lest leg, the finish line, there my babies stood...I DID IT and they were there to see it - they will always be in the memory of "mom's first marathon". At that moment I was beyond grateful for all the wonderful things in my life and humbled for the strength I have been given.



My kids came running out and we hugged and squealed - I received my medal and in that moment I knew I could do ANYTHING I set out to do and this was proof to my children to NEVER GIVE UP...


I finished in 4:57 and my goal was under 5 hrs. I could go on and on about how I wish I hadn't had stopped to catch my breath or how I held it back those last couple of miles... but it doesn't matter because I only have one place to go from here... UP!!!!

Few More Deets
The race was great - I would highly recommend. Very well organized and the course was nice. I would run this again. My attire was perfect and my Asics were amazing. Running in them was a complete different feeling - my feet felt great. I ate Gu Chomps at mile 8/16/22 and a few gummy bears along the way;) I wore my compression socks for my 3 hr drive home and my calves feel great. I hydrated mucho;)  And... on that note... I will be running more marathons in the future:)

Thank you ALL for your continued support and encouragement through all my training and this weekend - it means more to me than you can imagine. I am humbled beyond belief and grateful for such wonderful family and friends. 

If you have any other questions about the race or want to know more - you can email me at missmel_joy@yahoo.com - I would be happy to share whatever I can.

41 comments:

  1. Love this post!! I won't lie, it made me cry! (the client waiting in the lobby is looking at me, like wth?!?!) I am so proud of you, Mel!! And SO SO happy that E and your babies were there to see you hit that goal! Your journey is beyond inspiring, my friend! And man, what an amazing roll model you are for Elle and Wes!!! xoxo

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  2. I am so proud of you!!! I am definitely teary eyed after reading that! Makes me want to do a marathon, not sure if I could handle the loops but so glad you got it done!!! You are a rockstar my sir-hugs-a-lot friend!!!!

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  3. You inspire me! Congratulations on the HUGE accomplishment!

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  4. ahh so happy for you! You are an inspiration...i hope I can grow up to be a bit like you ;)

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  5. Good job, friend! I'm so proud of you! It was such a joy to meet you!

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  6. Big Crocodile Tears!!! I loved this post. You did it and owned it! Congratulations to you!!!

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  7. Congrats girl!!! You are amazing!!!

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  8. Ohh Mel, this made me cry... like literally 'I need to catch my breath and wipe my tears before anyone in the office sees me'... not only am I incredibly proud of you, I'm also so happy for you! You are most definitely an inspiration and an amazing example of what a woman should be <3

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  9. Amazing! Glad you got to run your marathon. :)

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  10. Yay!!! I'm so happy you got to run your marathon!!!

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  11. Is it weird that I feel like it was meant to be that you had to miss the St. Jude race so that you could experience your first marathon with your family by your side? Just reading this I had such an "oh it was just meant to be" feeling. As I've said repeatedly on the IG and twitter, I'm so very happy for you. I'm so inspired to get my run on in 2014 and get the 26.2 under my belt. You did such an awesome job. I'm just so happy for you that 26.2 finally became a reality for you and you are officially a MARATHONER.

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  12. You are such a ROCKSTAR! Congratulations! I can't wait to read about more marathons in the future.

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  13. You are dabombdotcom! Congrats girl!!!

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  14. WAY TO GO, MEL!!! You had me holding back my tears when you said the kiddos came running out. That's so special, and will really make this event even better than it already was! Great job!!!

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  15. This post made me cry when you talked about your children being there! Awesome job!!!

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  16. Wow great job! I even teared up a bit!

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  17. So proud of you, girl! Awesome job.

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  18. Congratulations! I don't know why, but I'm tearing up, haha. That's an amazing story, and so proud of you! Also I'm shipping your package tomorrow. Sorry for the delay- these holidays have been BIZZAY. Not in that way, just regular busy actually.

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  19. Congratulations on your HUGE accomplishment!!! That's so awesome your babies got to watch you and were there at the finish! Love this post! Xoxo

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  20. You made it sound like a breeze girl, haha! So so so proud of you! Makes me want to do on next fall!

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  21. Yay!! This was awesome!!! I love that your kids were a part of this! Congrats!!!!

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  22. AMAZING!!! Loved reading this. Can't wait to join you. :)

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  23. So after reading the other comments, I felt like less of a softy for tearing up while reading this...what an inspiration to overcome a cancelled race and a stinky article!!! YOU ROCK :)

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  24. You are absolutely amazing, a true inspiration!

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  25. I don't cry when I read people's race recaps...ever...but I just did. I love that your sweet babies were there to cheer you on! You did so amazing!!!

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  26. Omg totally just got tears in my eyes!!! Love your race cap and congrats! I am planning on running my first half this year and cannot wait. Love reading your blog !!!

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  27. I'm beyond proud of you and I cried, like a baby! Thanks for sharing!!!

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  28. YYYYYaaayyy! You rocked it! Now I must know.... ready for another? ;)

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  29. You rocked it! Congrats! What an inspiration you are to us all but most importantly to your kids!!

    Kate @ Raising the Rogers

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  30. Congrats! I am happy for you. I know how hard you worked to run the St.Jude and how disappointed you were that it was cancelled. Great job!

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  31. Awe. I'm crying like a proud momma! Im so beyond proud of you for not giving up all that training, for pushing through it. I'm so proud of you for showing your mini's what determination, hard work, and dedication can do. You my dear friend are amazing and an inspiration!!! Great job girl! Welcome to the 1%'er club. Many will try but only 1% of the worlds population will ever finish a marathon! Be proud and shout it out loud. You are a marathoner!!!

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  32. I read this last night at 2:35am and then proceeded to lie in bed with huge tears streaming down my face. I am so proud of you for this major accomplishment! I love that Elle, Wes, and E could be there to cheer you on. Congratulations, Melanie!

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  33. Add me to the list of criers! You are an amazing inspiration to all of us and especially those kiddos. Way to Rock it! Thank you for sharing your story and keeping me motivated!

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  34. Knew you could do it! Way to go!!

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  35. You are such a rockstar at running, I love reading all of your recaps. You make it seem so effortless! I did get teary-eyed when you I read about Elle and Wes running out onto the course, so sweet. Congratulations on your first marathon lady, and here is to many more!

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  36. Way to go!! Sounds overall like a really great race experience except for feeling sick in there! I actually teared up when I read about your kids cheering for you...that must have felt amazing!!! Congratulations Mel :)

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  37. Que the water works!! You are such an inspiration!!! I LOVED THIS!!

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