2:30 AM … buzzzzzzzzzzz!
me : “Oh God, already? I want to sleep! I do not want to run a marathon.”
me: “I hate John. I should text someone to let them know.”
me: “Now that I have professed my hatred of John I should get ready.”
I love to run but I really, really, didn’t want to run a marathon that day. I wanted to sleep. I ran a decent half marathon the day before and was expecting to have a pretty rough day out there. But not going wasn’t really an option so I forced myself through it.
It turns out that I did have a very rough day but not like I expected. I thought I’d blow up around mile 16-20 due to lack of energy. Instead I found myself pulled off the course time and time again massaging a painful abdominal muscle. I estimate that I stopped running 15 times to deal with my stomach. On top of that I stopped 5 times to pee. I stopped counting after I had stopped five times in the first 4 miles. I tried to stay positive and for the most part I succeeded but I was a bit frustrated.
Late in the race some guy started chatting with me. He had noticed that I had stopped many times because of my stomach. This man was the savior of my race. When I was talking with him my stomach did not hurt! I was able to run for a few miles without stopping from pain! He was having a tough time too. He had run a very good half marathon the day before and was tired. We talked and ran together for at least the last 10k of the race.
With a little over a mile left we stopped talking much as our pace quickened. And as we stopped talking the pain in my stomach built. With less than a mile to go I had to pull off to deal with my stomach again. I didn’t want to finish looking like I was in horrible pain or with my hand crammed up into my rib cage.
I finished in a little over 3:26. I was very happy! I completed the entire Goofy’s Challenge in less than 5 hours (1:31 the day prior). This was my sixth marathon and I’ve only done one marathon faster than this. Considering my stomach issues I was extremely pleased! I wonder if being forced to stop and walk so much actually helped my overall time by forcing me to pace myself. I’ll never know.