Tuesday, July 31, 2012

we survived our first ever full marathon!

we finished! my medal and bib number

i cannot tell you how happy i felt when i crossed that finish line on sunday after having ran 26.2 miles. it felt soooooo good. just knowing that i put myself through 5+ hours of constant running and actually finishing it, it felt amazing. i felt so accomplished, so proud of myself. who knew that i would be running a full marathon, ever?! 

mark ran the full marathon as well. and like me, it was also his first. his pace was so much faster than mine so he started 2 waves ahead of me. i won't bored you all with all the details. but all i can say is, everything you've ever read about running a marathon, the stories from people who've ran it… yup, i agreed with all of them. it's all true. at some point during the run, you think to yourself, "why did i sign up for this? am i crazy? i'm never doing this again. ever!" that's exactly how i felt. your body starts to hurt in so many places, you're not sure you can keep going. it's a lot of mental as it is physical. mark can say the same too. but funny how the human brain works. we sure have a short-term memory or something. later that day after the race, mark went out for his usual evening walk. when he got back, he told me, "i'm going to run every san francisco marathon until i get my time under 4 hours; even if it takes me several years to get there. no other routes but this one because i want to compare my times." i'm thinking… "are you crazy?" i'm not so sure about running every sf marathon, but i know i will run that race again. i just don't know about next year. it's too soon to make a decision right now after having just ran it. 

i must say, we felt fantastic (okay, maybe a little tired, burnt out, whatever you may call it) after the run; but overall, it was a great feeling. again, like i said above, the thought of knowing that we've ran our first marathon was so great. it's one of those things some people talk about, say maybe.. maybe not, and just leave it at that. we're the ones that said, "okay, let's do it" and actually did it. one item checked off our bucket list. now mark cannot wait to run his next one. you can say he's got the bug. i think i kind of have it too. i just don't want to make any quick decisions right now. i want to make sure that when i do sign up for a full marathon again that i put in the time and commitment to train for it properly. i really want to improve on my race time. 

so how did we do and what were our times? i finished in 5 hours, 25 minutes and 16 seconds. mark finished in 4 hours, 30 minutes and 10 seconds. not too bad for our first marathon run -- especially without proper training! and for me personally, anything to make me feel good about myself (hehe), it's not too bad considering i did it 9 months post baby #2. that's quite a fete! now, i just wonder if we did train properly, would our finish time had been better? i don't know. we'll have to see how we do on our next one. right now, the only race i would do without thinking twice is a half marathon. yes, having ran a full, i feel like i could run the half in my sleep! with my eyes closed.. whatever! it's nothing like the full. and plus, you can go so much faster… no need to reserve any energy because it won't be as long. of course, i must train for it properly too. but i also know that if i don't really have the time to train, i can still wing it and do okay. of course, i want to improve my half marathon time so i may have to put in some effort and train for it. do it right or something to see if i can improve my time. the last time i ran one (the nike women's marathon in 2010 -- half marathon distance), my time was 2:04. i think i can do better.

oh, how am i feeling 2 days after the race? i will have to say my body is pretty awesome. it remembers very well or was much more forgiving this time around compared to 2 weekends ago when mark and i did our practice marathon run (i ran 24 miles, he actually ran 26!). i still feel a little sore, a little stiff, but i also feel like i can definitely run today if i have to. of course, i didn't and won't for the next several days. the earliest day i'll run again is next tuesday -- at least a good week after the race. it's pretty cool how i didn't get anything major or minor like i did that last time. yes, after that 24 miles, my body was in so much shock, my left foot hurt so much, i could barely walk. but this time around... easy peasy, i'm up and about doing a-ok. just still a little sore, but no biggie. :) mark on the other hand? ahhh... he's still in pain. but he said that's probably because he didn't give himself enough recovery time that last time (he ran 2 days after that practice run while still feeling achy and some pain). i'm such a chicken these days, any hints/signs of pain and i stop. i don't want to injure myself and have to stop running for weeks, months, years, what have you! i should know better as i've experienced it first hand 3 years ago.

alright, that's it for now. so yes, again... we survived! and we're so excited for our next marathon race, whenever that will be -- for me anyway (mark's next june 2013). :D

got my running stuff for the sf marathon @ the sfm expo
me at the expo on saturday, getting my running bag for sunday's race

at the start line, waiting to start
a quick smile at the start line, waiting to run

the starting line
making our way up to the starting line @ 6:10am

all finished! me with my finisher medal
all smiles at the finish line holding my finisher’s medal. pretty awesome. :D

in-n-out as a post-race meal -- delish!
somewhere along mile 20-21, i heard two people behind me talking about a nice juicy burger. i told myself after the race that's exactly what i was going to have. either super duper or in-n-out. this WAS the perfect post-race meal.

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