⚡️It will hurt. It will be hard. But it will be SO worth it. 🏃🏼♀️ St George Marathon 2016 and finally qualifying for Boston!💙💛🏅 I was kind of a nervous wreck going into this race. I had had a rough week with a lot going on (including emotions and a sinus infection, happens to me all the time!) and didn't think I would be ready. I kind of wasn't but it came and it was time to run. We drove down to our old home of STG on friday morning and went right to the expo. It was so fun to see so many friends there and also the We Run Social and Procompression Meet up with so many awesome runners! My hunny was running too and I was so excited for him to race as well! We met my good friends Tamarynn and Holly and Stephanie, Cory Reese (a fellow Altar Ambassador who signed and gave me a copy of his awesome book "No where near first".) and Adrian. Then met up with Trevor's sisters and our brother in law who were running too. We grabbed our gear and numbers, took some photos and then headed to my mom and dads house for my moms annual marathon pasta dinner. She is the best host and It seriously is so good that we accredit her food over the years with many PRs and BQs the next day at the race. We laid out our stuff and went to bed and I was nervous but ready.
We went to the buses and met many friends at the starting line too. Trena and Tasha, Brittany and Cassidy and Janice. We made it a start line party! It helped calm my nerves. You see this was my 14th marathon and although I know how to run a marathon well, that illusive BQ has always been just out of reach. I wanted it SO bad this time. Even coming right off of a Full Ironman just 2 months ago.
It was almost time. We all wished each other good luck, I kissed Trevor and wished him luck and went to our respective starting places. I lined up at the 3:30 spot with Cassidy and we were both hoping for a perfect race and a BQ today! We waited for the gun......3-2-1....GO! The race started and I was stillmentally was planning on a 3:30 for my plan A race. My training was spot on for that. We started running and I felt really good the first 13 miles as expected. First 10k was a 47:14 and the half mark was 1:44:23 (on my watch). Perfect. I don't really remember much of the first half other then I felt good and was happy we were through the dreaded veto hill at mile 8 and another big incline from 11-13. STGs first half is more hilly so I was happy with those paces for a 3:30. Now time to stay calm till 20 and then try to fly the last 10k. At mile 15 or so I got a terrible side ache (which I never get 😖) and my stomach and quads were starting to cramp so bad, but I kept pushing. My pace slowed a bit, but I was hanging in there. My amazing friend and training buddy @tamarynnleigh and I ran some good stretches together. As we approached the ledges at 17-18 I was really struggling mentally. I wanted to just walk to the finish. Always finish but the pace and heat and everything almost became too much. I was hurting and the hill we were climbing was hard and it was hot. My heart rate started sky rocketing and I knew I needed to calm down. I didn't take any more nutrition either because my stomach was sick which was risky. I stopped and walked for maybe a minute (which I hated doing) but it helped me feel better and then I could run again. My 3:30 time goal was gone now. Plan B was sub 3:35. I was trying but my pace had slowed to an 8:05 average. At mile 21 I walked through the aid station and walked a little longer then I normally would, 30 seconds maybe. Heart rate still high, hot and tired.. mentally done. I saw Tamarynn again and she said "let's go!". I started running with her and she reminded me that my body knows how to run 5 more miles at an 8:45 pace no problem. Bring it home and get that BQ! I'm so grateful for her! Best training partner!
🏃🏼♀️🏃🏼♀️Plan C was in full swing. Get that BQ! Sub 3:40. It was my "Magical year" where I age up in 2018 so I get an extra 5 minutes. I was grateful I could still try for that BQ even though plan A and B were gone. We ran over the last 2 rolling hills and then into St George towards the finish. There's nothing like that finish line to my marathon heart! ❤️ something kicked in. That fire burned in me. The one that has been doused so many times by "failure". The voices that whispered "you're not a good runner... you'll never BQ... you'll never be good enough". I told them to shut up and I ran. I ran my heart out that last 5k. I've never felt so connected and yet so disconnected from my body all at the same time. 3 miles left-8:21, 2 miles left 8:33, 1 mile left- 7:59. I turned the corner and saw the finish line. "Stay strong, stay strong!" I told myself. My mind was clear and I knew if I could push it to the end I could make a 3:37 and qualify with just enough. My legs that had trained so many miles, lifted weights, practiced yoga, ran so many sprints, gave me every last bit of what they had in that moment. I saw the clock, threw my hands in the air and crossed the finish line. 3:37:30 office time. I had finally done it! Boston Qualifier! 🦄💙💛🏅 The dream that I had had since my first marathon, was now a reality. I had ran the best marathon of my life finally even despite a not so perfect race. Sometimes you have to fight, and fight hard for something. Shoot for the moon and even if you miss you'll land among the stars. Initially I was sad because I know a 3:30 is totally achievable for me, but a 3:37 is good enough for a BQ and I am overjoyed! Beyond thrilled and like I said before, never EVER give up! Boston 2018!! 🎉