Christina's Boston Marathon 2016 Recap
So it has been about a month since the Boston Marathon and I can still feel the stabbing pain in my legs...haha. just kidding. To summarize Boston.... it was my 10th marathon, my best training for a marathon, my worst marathon in regards to time/pain but overall...a blast of a weekend and a wonderful experience filled of memories that I will have with me forever!
This year I ran for the Melanoma Foundation of NE in memory of Leanne, a young girl who lost her life to Melanoma in December. The cause is very near and dear to my heart and is something that I am very very passionate about. I raised $10,400 for the foundation. It took a lot of hustling and hard work and I am very proud of myself for making my goal and spreading the word about Melanoma. I received countless messages and emails from people thanking me for educating them and telling me that they went to their Dermatologist for a skin check, etc. Pretty empowering.
The day of the race my team had their own tent with private bathrooms...it was prettyyyy awesome. I was so nervous before the race. As I normally am, though. Everyone was pretty quiet. Once we got to the start, Mary and I had to part ways to go into our own corrals. When we said our goodbyes I got choked up and almost cried... she later admitted that she did, too...haha. My PR for the marathon is 3:34:10. I was going for a 3:30 which is a pretty significant decrease (~8:10/mi >> ~8:00/mi). When the marathon started, I felt nice and strong. I had to hold myself back from going too fast. As you can see in the checkpoints I posted in the photo slideshow above, I started slipping around the halfway mark which is exactly when I started cramping up. I remember feeling like "YES, CHRISTINA, TODAYYYY IS YOURRR DAY! PR HERE WE COME!!!" and then all of the sudden, I felt a stabbing pain every time my leg hit the ground. and THAT is when I knew.....TODAY WAS NOT MY DAY. For the first time, I had to stop running. Which is where you see my splits drop to 9:00 and then to 10:30s...ah! I had to. I had no choice. The pain was bad. I almost stopped at a couple medical tents but mentally talked myself out it. I was DETERMINED to make it. As you can see I was able to pick it back up at the end a little bit (the net decline at the end helped plus walking beforehand).
Right as I turned on Hereford I saw a girl from Ireland walking. Even though I was SO close to the finishline...I still felt like "Am I going to make it?". I tapped her on the shoulder and motioned for her to start running with me. She did. We both picked up our pace and ran side by side and crossed the finishline together. We hugged and then both shared with each other practically the same story...that we cramped. It is odd...it seemed like mostly everyone I knew cramped that day. Around the halfway point, on top of it. I think it was the temperature that did it. Not that it was insanely hot (like that one year) but it was much warmer than ideal and no one was used to it. I really think that's what it was. It is too much of a coincidence that everyone cramped, you know? Misery loves company, as they say. It was frustrating, I will say. I KNOW I was trained for a 3:30. I even PRed at the NYC Half Marathon a month before that (1:39 7:35/mi pace). I KNEW I was capable. But 4/18/16 was not my day. and guess what...that is okay. Every race teaches you something. I KNOW I will get my 3:30. Maybe at NYC in November, maybe not. But it WILL come. This race taught me to (1) never give up and (2) when you THINK that perhaps you should alter your race plan due to weather....you PROBABLY should. Be smart.
At lunch afterwards my Dad asked me, "So, are you done running Marathons, T?". I looked at him and said "HUH!? No! NYC Marathon here I come!". haha... I have a love hate relationship with running!