I seriously was not going to write a blog about this race. I was either going to not write at all, or do a picture only recap. But.. I thought about it and decided it might be cathartic to write about it. Needless to say, I was NOT happy with my performance. And the administration of the race was crap as well.
The weekend started off on the wrong foot as I went to the race location to pick up my race packet. The packet pick up was fine.. I got my number bib and my bag, which was nice and my tshirt, which of course was a XL. But it should fit soon, but I won’t wear it since it says NORTH CAROLINA MARATHON across the front and I didn’t run the marathon. But then I asked the lady where to go to the expo, since I wanted to look at some long pants and maybe a hat/ear warmer or something since it was going to be cold as all heck the next morning. And she was like.. “Oh the expo is not tonight.. it’s tomorrow (DURING THE RACE)… they changed it at the last minute…” Wha?? So I stopped at target to get some pants on the way home.
Race day started out well enough. Got to the venue in plenty of time. Was able to wait indoors so I wasn’t freezing my tail off. Cheered on the start of the Marathon/Half Marathon.
And they’re off!
After that I stayed outside (it had warmed up), walked around to warm up and drank my Gatorade Prime… then it was time to line up for the 5K start.
After this point it all goes downhill in a hurry.
My pants were too big and were falling down even after I pulled the drawstring as tight as it would go and rolled the waist. The cold air, which absolutely kills me, had me panting and my lungs burning after about 100 yards. After that I felt like absolute crap the whole rest of the way. They also didn’t have the course marked so I had no idea how far we had gone. This started the negative thoughts of “Shit, I bet it hasn’t even been a mile yet.. can I even finish this?” Which then lead to “How the $%&@ do I expect to do a half marathon?!?!” Needless to say, I was not feeling very invigorated. Well, we finally turned down a street that I knew was close to the expo center, so the agony was finally going to be over……
The Home Stretch.
Ok.. so I finished. But as I glanced at the clock I saw red. 44:12. A mere 43 seconds faster than my previous best. Yes, it’s a PR (personal record), but after 7 weeks of intense training I expected myself to do a lot better than “just finishing”. I was mad. Mad at myself. Mad at the weather. Mad at the course.. mad at everything.
Then came the post race expo, the free food and the free beer…. wait… the beer’s not free? The food is bagels and apples, and the expo center is empty? What the frell? This is a marathon right? This is THE North Carolina Marathon? You have got to be kidding me. So the best part of the race was that I had finished it and it was over? Nice.
At least I got a nice ribbon.
I won’t lie. I was so pissed off and so disappointed I sat in my car in the parking lot and cried. I felt like the training was worthless and it didn’t help me, and I felt like running the race just proved I was fat and slow and would never be a “runner” just a “finisher”… I also had 2 or 3 weeks of other stress crashing down on me. Like I said, it’s a miracle I even started the race, and a bigger miracle I finished it. But that doesn’t mean I have to like it.
The time says it’s my best race. The experience was the worst.