So I ran.
- In the humid heat of Minnesota, on a state highway with the asphalt melting to my shoes.
- On the backroads of some rural farmland. (No recurrence of ghost possums, thankfully.)
- On crazy hotel treadmills that randomly powered down and instantly froze the belt and sent me flying, repeatedly.
- At the Fargo marathon, uff-da. (Their official tag line no less.)
Yes there was another marathon.
Here is my extensive, detailed race report.
That pretty much sums it up. More detail could be categorized in this way, the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly.
Running with my sis! Actually running with both of my sistahs. The younger older one was running her very first marathon! The younger younger one decided to cheer us on by running four miles with us in combat boots, also yeah!
My family was there and they are the best support crew in the world! The five year old slapped hands with 305 runners. I know this number is accurate because the seven year old spent his time counting. And the three year old kept asking if she could run the marathon. Teh wifey somehow managed this gang of hooligans, and navigated them to innumerable stops along the course. Yeah she's the best crew chief ever.
Great job to sis on finishing her first marathon, and we got to break the tape together! Awesome!
I didn't feel well. Still having the respiratory infection that was going into its second week did not help very much. Breathing was constricted, congestion pain, lack of energy, pretty much the laundry list of exactly what you are hoping for right as you go into a marathon. Right.
Still thinking I had a chance to go under five hours proved to be rather moronic. I went through the first eight to nine miles blazing along. I left the five hour pace group behind without any over exertion at all. Then it all got ugly. No energy, little breathing, a strong urge to throw up, and a burning desire to exit stage left. That and I wanted to find every drop of blue powerade in existence and flush it down the toilet (it was making me sick at that point.) I think Blue Powerade is what they must use to clean all those toilets...
There was walking. There was plotting my exit. There was a whole lot more walking, which probably should be called shuffling. There was even sitting on the curb of the road, in despondency. Then I got a slap on the behind. Not metaphorically, literally. My awesome sis caught up and got me going.
It wasn't pretty (this being in the Ugly section after all) but I finished. The mantra that sort of came through with some truth as I at times started to feel a little better was, "It can't always get worse." I've heard ultramarathoners talk about using this, and it was definitely true for me on this day. The sis and I raced in the last couple of miles and broke the tape in the Fargodome. Final time: 5:58. Yikes, scary. But it wasn't a DNF. That would have been really ugly. Instead I got the blessing of crossing the finish line with my sis. And that Ole and Lena, is what we call the good stuff.