Saturday, June 11, 2011

Utah Valley Marathon

Yes, you read that correctly. Today I ran the Utah Valley Marathon. It was so much fun!
I didn't know how it was going to turn out, but it was a really fun day!

Here is what happened leading up to and through today. Mike (coworker), Jeff (coworker), Tonya (roommate), and I have been training for the marathon for the last 16 weeks or so.
Yesterday after our work retreat we went to the marathon expo to pick up our bib numbers and our shirts. We were all really excited! Last night, Tonya and I ate a lot of food, did some pre-marathon massages, read up on some other marathons that look interesting because we were too excited to really sleep, but we finally did go to bed.

Tonya and I got up at 2:15 am so we could eat enough and our food could settle before the start of the marathon. Then we layered up our clothes and at 3:30 we left our house to go catch the bus.

We arrived up the canyon at the start of the race (Wallsburg, UT) at 4:45 and it was quite chilly up there, so they had fire pits and water and Powerade and bathrooms. Actually, it was quite interesting because Wallsburg reminds me so much of home, just a small town up in the canyon.

About a quarter to 6 we shed our outer layers and put them in the truck that would take our bags to the finish of the race and went to the bathroom one more time. And then we started...

The first 7 miles went around Wallsburg and then around to the highway by Deer Creek Reservoir. I am a fairly slow runner, so I just ran by myself. I listened to a book called Blink about how quickly we make first impressions about everything/everyone we see. I stopped at chapter 4 and listened to the sound track to Wicked (the Broadway musical).

There were lots of hills over the first half of the course. I wish I had done better at training on the hills because I was awfully slow. Once we got to the halfway point, the landscape was a lot more familiar because that is where I have done my long runs. So from the road, I could see the parks I go by when I'm on the trail. Each of the odd miles had an aid station to get water or Powerade and some of them had bananas and oranges, or Gu, or otter pops, or shot blocks to keep us going. I drank at every one of them and I felt like that did keep me going. I probably should have eaten more of the Clif bar I had in my belt, but it just didn't taste good to me while I was running, but I knew I needed calories.

My chip time was 5:21, which was not quite as fast as I had hoped, but better than I thought it would be when I reached mile 14. Overall, I am pleased at it being my first marathon. I really had two goals for it: 1. finish and 2. not be the last one. :) I did both, so I felt good about it. (A friend later told me that there were still people coming in after 7 hours.) For the next one, I will probably work more on my speed and I need to do more on hills.

When I got to the finish, my friends were all there because they are faster than I and Lori, Jordan, and Mckenzie came down too! It was exciting to see the finish line at the last aid station and to know I just had a little bit left to go!

Here's a picture of us at the finish. Not too bad looking after 26.2 miles!

We walked around a little bit for the muscles to stop spasming and then Tonya and I stopped at Kohinoor (Indian food) to eat when we got home. It tasted pretty darned good! Taking a shower was amazing and I felt so much better afterwards. I tried to take a nap, but my body had a hard time really resting. So I got up and went to the store so I would walk around and bought some chips that were salty.

Tonight Lori and Jordan took me to eat at Outback and it was a lot of fun! I came home and we did massages. As long as I keep moving, I am not so stiff. I must say, I'm not too fast moving, but as the marathon shirt says, it's "Pain you enjoy."