2018 C.I.M. RECAP: (better late than never)
I made this an Instagram post but decided to post it here too, on the blog I haven’t posted to in about 2 years! I’m posting here because I think it’s much easier to read a long ass recap via a blog post rather than a Instagram one with my 5 comments describing my race experience. It’s an easy way for myself to look back on the details from the day and it gives me an opportunity to phot dump the 84,000 pics I took that weekend.
I registered for this race back in March of 2018. I was still injured(2 pelvis fractures; one in front/one in back on min weight bearing areas) and starting to run a few miles (slowly) at a time. Looking forward to something that was so far away made me extremely excited and ready to work hard to get myself back into PR running shape after taking 6 months off.
December 2, 2018:
I had a great race; a Dream day. Almost every single thing went right, the stars aligned and those wonderful weather gods smiled down on me. But to back up:
Number pickup and leaving on a jet plane!
It was very early no judging pls
We stayed at the Sheraton Grand: it was the CIM host hotel & we wanted our stay to be as easy as possible. Kristina and I live in Massachusetts, north of Boston. This was a big trip for us; Leaving our kids and husbands and 🐶🐱was a HUGE deal.
I met with my coach on Friday for lunch (Esther was running it too) to discuss my race plan.
Me and my coach, Esther! (Who ran a friggen 2:36 on race day!)
Plan was to stop at every water stop for the 1st hour. Reason being that your body takes an hour to use the water that you’ve taken in: if I waited to take in water; i wouldn’t be using it efficiently and would become dehydrated. Water stops stress me out & I’ve never been skilled with stopping at them. She suggested I start with a bottle & eventually toss it.
As for fuel; Plan was to fuel at the start of 7; every 5 miles after that. I planned on taking 2 Maürten gels & 3 GU with me.
One thing that really helped us was that we purposely did not adjust to the time change. We went to bed/ woke up on east coast time-this helped a ton. The 7:00 am start felt like 10:00.
K before the race! We are very cheerful for people who are about to go through so much pain, haha!
What am i doing with my hands? I have no idea.
BUS to the start! VERY exciting, I know.
Race day came; K and I were up at 3:30ish. We knew that we wanted to be down at the buses for 4:30-4:45; we were told by a nice expo man that bus lines get long and to get there before the 5 am pickup. (We were also told that no one gets left behind 😍)
Breakfast was a plain bagel. And 30 min before the race, I drank Maurten 320 & half a serving of UCAN (K & I split one serving bc it was 😝🤮)
The bus ride was long but we just talked quietly about our plans & reassured one another that WE CAN DO HARD THINGS and that we didn’t come all the friggen way to Cali to run a crappy race.
We peed 30 min before the start; I got my fuel in order, we checked our bags and Then it was time to line up! The time before the race went by SO fast; i didn’t have time to be nervous.
got to hug my Mel too 💜
We walked to the corral and seeded ourselves accordingly. The corrals were FULL & somehow we would up outside of the barriers; trying not to start at the back. K got to the 3:20 mark, kissed me, pushed me forward; my bambi-like legs stumbled to the 3:10 pace group (there was no 3:14/3:15 pace group lol). some nice fellow figured that he could actually open the corral and we outsiders could slide in. Thank you, Mr Man!
National Anthem🇺🇸, hand over my ❤️…i welled up a bit; the National Anthem gives me the feels💙GO TIME.
I was amazed that i didn’t feel bottle-necked in this large race. I found my groove very quickly and didn’t weave at ALL. I started with a water bottle. It was way too heavy so I tossed it before mile 1. I stopped at every water stop & took in a sip of nuun and water until mile 15, then after that I just grabbed the cup and gulped. I was fine stopping-it was only a couple of seconds. I took Maürten gel at the start of miles 7 & 12 and then GU at 16 & 21. I wish I had brought along more Maürten; I think that worked much better for me than the gu. The annoying part of Maürten is that you’re basically eating it while running but i think i could’ve handled it! My stomach felt great this whole race and I think it was due largely to the fact that I followed the plan for water and nutrition exactly as my coach prescribed.
Something I need to put in this recap (so i don’t forget next year, ha) is that the one strange thing about this race course were the raised street dividers. I don’t have those near me; i was very afraid that I would trip on one (#clumsyaf) and in fact a friend of mine had it happen to her. So if you have run this race before, or plan to in the future: be aware of the raised dividers in the road!
I really tried to hold back the first half and not focus on the times on my watch; I only looked when it beeped. The miles clicked by and felt effortless. I saw my time at the half and it was 1:37:10..obviously it was not right since the clocks displayed the official start time. When I viewed my splits later, it was 1:35:47-it was actually a 1 second half PR, ha!
One of my girlfriends Mel came up beside me at mile 16ish, and we stayed together until 18. I felt great through then. It was almost too easy!
I love that a photographer caught Mel and I together! And Yup, I’m refusing to pay money but thank gosh for screenshots!
Around mile 18, My right quad started to hurt a lot. I was worried the muscle would seize up so I slowed 15-30 seconds per a mile with my paces for the remainder of the race. I let Mel go because I think staying with her may have done damage (she went on to finish in a fast 3:08!) When I finished the race, My husband told me that I had been on pace for a 3:11 through the 30k; that is really cool.
My quad hurt all the way to the finish but there was no way I was stopping to walking or stretch it out. I picked off people mile to mile and I knew I was looking at a huge PR & that i just had to hold on for a little longer. My confidence never wavered. I was so happy and proud of myself during this race. The marathon usually defeats me; not this time.
My last .35 mile was an 8:04 avg and that kills me bc that was the difference between 3:15 and 3:14! I didn’t smile while crossing the finish line (I regret this!); I think I was in shock.
but I was all smiles after the race! Photo cred to McKirdy
Photo below: Jessie, (she ran a 23 min PR to nab herself a 3:32!) her friend who also BQ’d, Kristina & I post race! We all BQ’d And PR’d! K got a shiny new 3:26 PR. I’m so proud of her, let me tell you that she worked her ass off for this, in between having two babies and breastfeeding she continued to work and it paid off with her smart training! I could write a whole (very long) post on how much I love her and respect her. She is my lucky penny!
Some of the food post race.. we got room service; best idea ever after a marathon!
Just a little photo dump here, don’t mind me!Kristina & I! We wanted to ring the PR bell but the line was SO LONG so this pic in front of the capital building will have to suffice!
Immediately after finishing I called my husband, (cried!!! He was so happy for me! He knows how hard i work, even though running drives him nuts) then my mom, then my BFF Joelynn who is my OG of running support (she has always been there for most of the marathon finish lines since the beginning of my crazy running days) I cried to all of them and thanked them, and then cried some more after hanging up. .
Finally hitting a goal you’ve trained for is HUGE. My heart was overflowing in the best way possible & this finish line moment will forever be a bright light in my mind.
Looking back: i don’t remember details of scenery except that it was pleasant. I was laser focused on running & fueling. The rolling hills were not as challenging as past runners had warned me that they would be. I personally found the most challenging section to be the last 6 ish miles because they had flattened out. I actually would’ve preferred more of the same thing we had just done! I’m sure the rolling hills caused my quad to start screaming; the flat miles didn’t help it though! If my quad hadn’t seized, I know i would’ve held onto my 7:20 pace and would’ve been able to push at the end instead of a flat pace.
This race meant a lot to me. It made me want to throw up with anxiety and also push myself as much as possible: I think that’s the best way to toe the line for a goal race: equal parts fear and excitement. I kept telling myself that i wasn’t going all the way across the country to run a sub par race: NOPE. This was the way I was going to fully close the door to the past. I’m no longer injured; running this race was the way that chapter finally ended for me.
During the last 6 miles when the pain was hitting my quad hard, I started doing MATH. When i hit the 20 mile mark i knew that even if I ran 8 min miles, I would still PR. That motivated me to start picking off people and pass them by.
I held on tightly to my PR desire and pushed myself to keep going-I knew i wanted that big PR & dammit I was going to get it! Crossed the finish line in 3:15:03. A 10 minute and 22 second PR & the absolute best way to cap off a wonderful year of running 🏃🏻♀️
It’s been 4 weeks & I’m still riding that PR high! I’m very happy with the day & I’m excited for what 2019 will bring 🏃🏻♀️🥇🏅