Hi there! I'm Paula and I live in Orlando. I like to run and watch too much TV. I'm a lover of cupcakes and hater of chia seeds, even though I've never tried them. I eat peanut butter out of the jar and think Aaron Paul is my boyfriend.
Tag Archives: Savannah Rock n Roll
So, that marathon thing happened. It’s basically all I can think about for the last 3 days. I’m never like this with half marathons, so I guess running a marathon is a pretty big deal to me. Who knew? So, here’s what’s been going on since Saturday.
First Thing I Did When I Got Home on Sunday
I recover quickly from long runs. I do a lot of cross-training, so I’m going to go ahead and thank Crossfit and weight lifting for that. The day after the marathon, my knees and legs in general were pretty sore. I could walk fine once I got going, but when I got up from a seated position or out of a car – that posed a walking challenge.
I’m terrible when it comes to stretching and foam rolling. So I didn’t do either after the marathon. I did take a rather long ice bath and I wore my Zensah compression sleeves after the marathon and the entire next day. The second day, my inner thighs were a little sore so I stretched and foam rolled (a little) and after that, the soreness was gone. So, I’m sure if I stretched and foam rolled after the marathon, my recovery would have been even faster. But damn. Stretching is so boring. I’d rather sit on the couch and count the popcorn on the ceiling.
I’ve even gone to yoga classes before and I can’t relax in those. All I think about during the class is how many minutes till it’s over or what I could be doing that is more fun than yoga – like visiting a screen door factory.
I haven’t ran or worked out since the marathon, which is unusual for me. Unless you count lifting the fork to my mouth as an activity, then I’ve been very active. Three days might be the longest voluntary non-workout period I’ve ever had that wasn’t during a vacation. Basically, I get home from work and take a nap. Then I wake up and watch TV for a couple hours and go right back to bed.
After the first recovery day, my knee felt back to normal. I hope to get in a short run today or tomorrow just to make sure it’s ok. Or I might go grocery shopping instead. Or sleep some more. Nothing like a marathon to suck all the productivity out of you when you get home.
You know how everyone tells you how you’ll do great on race day because you have that race adrenaline that will keep you going? Race adrenaline stresses me out. I think the reason my training runs were better is because I don’t have that pressure to finish. When I’m in a race, I have to finish and that pressure can really bring me down mentally. Once I’ve checked out mentally, something I enjoy becomes a chore instead.
Next Up with Training
I have a bunch of half marathons lined up right now. I’m really looking forward to the Las Vegas Rock ‘n’ Roll half. I’m going to run that race for fun, not time. I want to dress up somehow and I’m planning on leaving my Garmin at home. I’ve never run a race without my Garmin or at least the Runkeeper app on my phone, so I may have a panic attack. But screw it. I want to see how a race goes without it. I have plenty of races coming up that I will run for time.
Will I run another marathon?
If you asked me before I ran Savannah, I would have said hell no. If you read my post on what I’ve learned from marathon training, I was not enjoying getting fat, missing Friday night’s out with my friends, and any run past 18 miles. Now, I will definitely run another marathon and I will make my goal. Savannah still makes me sad. It’s so annoying that I have to prove something to myself, but I do. Now, I’m trying to decide if the race is going to be sooner or later.
Well, I’m a marathoner! It feels pretty bad ass to be able to say that and now I have a whole new appreciation for people that run marathons. Whole. new. appreciation. I’ve been trying to think about what to write in this post and I almost don’t know where to start. Let’s just say the race didn’t go like I planned and I’m still a little sad about it.
But I’ll go back to the beginning. Saturday morning I had a 4:00am wake-up call to get ready for the race. I did that thing I do which included taking a self-portrait.
And stuffing 3 peanut butter and jelly sandwiches in my running top.
Speaking of those sandwiches, I ate half a sandwich at Miles 4, 8, 12, and 16. I wanted to eat half at Miles 20 and 24 too, but the thought of another one after Mile 16 was making me want to punch small children. At Mile 22, I forced myself to eat two more bites but that was all I could take so I ditched the rest.
Ok, back to the morning. Michelle, Dan, and I headed to the Savannah Mall where all the buses were picking runners up to take to the start. I was freezing and worried I had underdressed for the race.
Traffic was a little heavy, but once we parked we got on a bus right away without problems – around 6:00am.
That’s when the lines got longer. We heard from others that the buses weren’t exactly organized at first and a few drivers got lost. Thankfully we missed all that.
The bus ride took about 40 minutes and once we arrived at the start, we hit up the porta-a-potties. That line took another 30 minutes. During the wait, I made Michelle take a picture of the sweet throw-away sweater I “borrowed” from my friend K.
No Good Will needed. Just ask your friends for embarrasing clothes.
I also found Brad during that time. Brad and I are in the same training group and have a similar pace so we run most of our training runs together. We were all in Corral 12 and by the time we were out of the port-o-potty line, 9 corrals had already started the race. So, Michelle, Brad, and I ran to get into our corral and made it just in time to take a couple pictures before we started.
The start of the race was surprisingly awesome. An entire bridge was closed for all the runners so there was no bottleneck. The rest of the course was rather unimpressive. Very little of the course was scenic and we ran through some questionable neighborhoods. But all the residents of those neighborhoods were out cheering for the runners which was amazing. They were an extremely supportive community.
Mile 3: We ran into Allison, who along with her boyfriend, may be the cutest people I’ve ever met. Then, Brad and I saw at least 6 people from our running group, Marathonfest, which was fun.
Mile 4: I wondered what the BFDeal was about Rock ‘n’ Roll races. I’ve heard from everyone how awesome they are and this one wasn’t even in the top tier of awesome races.
Mile 6: I started having left shoulder pain that I thought was because of my Camelbak. I didn’t use my Camelbak during the race, so I guess it’s just me?
Mile 7 (I think): We ran through downtown Savannah which had the most crowd support. My favorite sign from a spectator said, “something inspirational.” I thought that was cute and it gave me a good laugh during the race.
Mile 8: Left knee pain started. It felt uncomfortable at first and wasn’t constant. So when I didn’t feel it, I could cruise along at a 9:30 pace. When I did feel it, I dropped to an 11:00-12:00 pace.
Mile 8 or 9: Michelle, Brad, and I saw Dan along the course. I know it was for just a second since we were running by, but it was really awesome seeing someone on the course cheering for you. That was a first for me. So, all of you runners that have people willing to go to multiple mile stops for you – consider yourself lucky!
Mile 9: Brad and I walked through a water stop and Michelle kept going. So we lost her.
Mile 11.5: We split from the half marathoners. My shoulder was hurting, my knee was hurting, and I never wished so much that I had signed up for the half instead.
Mile 13.1: Port-o-potty stop. I wanted to stay in that port-o-potty forever so I didn’t have to finish the race. <— words I never thought I’d say
Mile 14: Everything was going to shit. I kept thinking about my 24 mile training run that was so much easier and how I finally worked out all my stomach issues and now I have a shoulder and escalating left knee problem out of nowhere.
Mile 18: Brad and I started taking more walk breaks. He wasn’t doing so well so he told me to go on without him if I thought I could still make a sub-5 hour marathon. So, I did.
Mile 19: The only mile during the whole race where I felt great. No knee pain and my energy kicked up a notch.
Mile 20: Walk breaks aplenty.
Mile 21-24: These miles were on a deserted highway with no crowd support and no bands. The highway had a lot of steady inclines and a nasty headwind that just took everything I had left in me. My knee was so bad after Mile 20 that I felt if I didn’t stop to walk, that my knee would have buckled under me. So for the remaining miles, I ran until my knee couldn’t take it anymore and then walked.
Mile 25: I started to cry. Not because I was about to finish my first marathon, but because my shoulder and my knee were killing me and I finally realized I wasn’t going to make a sub-5 hour marathon after all. I can’t even talk or write about that mile without tearing up.
The last 2/10′s: I was tired but my knee was surprisingly ok right at the end. So, I ran through the finish because there is no way I was going to walk any part of it. I was finally a marathoner and it was kind of bitter sweet.
Although I was properly rested and hydrated, I didn’t feel awesome at any point during the race. I put in 5 hard months of training, I finally solved my stomach problems after a year of making friends with race port-o-potties, and I get taken out by a knee problem I’ve never had before. I never even hit a wall. It’s just that $%#$& knee that held me back. <—- insert your own expletive
By the way, Brad finished too. He didn’t want to take a picture, but I made him.
Around Mile 14, I was sure I was never going to run another marathon. Now, I alternate between never wanting to run another one to wanting to run another one while I’m still trained so I can prove to myself that I’m capable of my goal.
On one hand, I’m so proud I finished something that most people in the world can’t do. On the other hand, it’s hard to accept that I couldn’t achieve my goal, and with all the time involved in training, who knows if I’ll get another chance to find out.
Overall, I had a really great time in Savannah. And I can’t even tell you how awesome Dan is for driving us to Savannah, back to Orlando, and all around town all weekend. The guy is a freakin’ saint. We also had some really fun blogger get togethers that I’ll tell you about in another post. So, thank you Michelle, Dan, and Brad for making my first marathon weekend so memorable! It’s really amazing to have supportive friends with you the whole way. No way I could have done it alone.
So, we made it to Savannah in one piece. The drive was easy and uneventful except for the semi that actually ran us off the road. Good thing Michelle’s husband is the most mellow driver on the planet. After Michelle and I freaked out, Dan said, “what’s the worst that could happen?” I guess “death” was the first thing that went through my mind.
Other than that, we’ve only been here a day but this is what I’ve learned so far:
1. Food is cheap in Savannah. $4 burgers? WTF? I pay $10 for a burger with less toppings in Orlando. We ate dinner at Cheddars last night and ordered edamame because it was $4 and chips and salsa because it was $2. We didn’t even want them. But it’s like Savannah is drawing us in with its cheap food prices.
2. Anyone that hears you are going to Savannah tells you to say hello to Paula Deen. For the record, I WILL NOT SAY HELLO TO PAULA DEEN. It’s like telling people you got married in Vegas and everyone assumes you got married by Elvis. (Yes, I was married in Vegas, and no, it wasn’t by Elvis.)
3. I thought the thermostat in my hotel room wasn’t working. Nope. It’s working fine. The maintenance guy that came in my room and looked at me like I’m a complete idiot told me that. I’m supposed to use this one by the window.
I suppose this is decoration then?
This morning, after our free hotel breakfast of cute mini-waffles, Michelle, Dan, and I headed down to the Expo. We
got a little lost on the way took the scenic route.
Once we did arrive, holy sweet Moses there were a lot of people there.
The expo is staying open at least an hour longer than planned because of delays, probably in the parking area, because when we left the cars were seriously backed up and we were glad we got there when we did.
Packet pick-up was really fast despite all the people. We had to throw some elbows to get near all the vendors with free stuff. I was hoping to find a bunch of cute things to blow all my money on, but I couldn’t find anything. At least the race shirt is really cute.
After the expo, we ate a late lunch at Mellow Mushroom and now it’s already time to get ready for dinner.
This marathon thing is starting to feel more real!
I’ll go ahead and add this to the list of worries already forming in my head.
Well, I did it. Today I registered for my first (and possibly only) full marathon – the Savannah Rock n Roll.
Yeah, baby. I’m actually feeling a little woozy thinking about it. And I might have to poop a little. As Anthony Michael Hall once said in Weird Science, “I’ll see ya in the emergency room.”
I also registered for the Gasparilla Half Marathon next month. I’ve been putting this one off but it’s been on my radar for awhile now. Only $60 – that’s a cheap race!
This one is sponsored by Publix, and they seem to put on a good race. The Women’s Magazine Half that I ran in November was sponsored by them too. Lots of goodies afterwards. And by lots of goodies, I mean there were cookies.
I’m also about THISCLOSE to registering for the San Diego Rock n Roll half in June. But really, that race is just an excuse to get to see my family more often.
So, how many of you have already run full marathons? Go ahead and tell me how your first one was a breeze and you loved every minute of it and that I have nothing to worry about.