It started the night before with some fellow runners:
Picking up packets
That would be my name with my number...103
We never took a training photo so this one will do...
The morning of the race I woke up at 5am. I couldn't sleep so I was more than ready to go. I am NOT a morning person so this really was ridiculous for me.
Off to the race...
We had about a half hour to kill before the race started. Let's just say there was some praying and a whole lot of urinating going on...thankfully there are no pictures of this.
Here we are at the starting line. The tall blonde is my dear friend Cynthia who moved to Utah a few months ago, but came to run the race. We had no idea she was coming it was a fun surprise.
While I was waiting for the gun shot I realized that I had lost my knee brace. I thought I left it in the Romney's van. Good thing I brought my cell phone along, Ryan found it and had it for me at mile seven. This is me actually asking for it.
Notice no knee brace...
... and now knee brace.
Can I just openly admit that I am a dork? Here is proof...
Clearly I clap or do crazy things with my arms/hands when I am happy or excited. That qualifies for dorkness.
Do you have any idea how much I love orange shirts?I was so happy and excited every time I saw this orange shirt...not even because I'm crushing on Adam, my new bishop...
...but because I was so happy to see these fun cheerleaders with him!
It also meant we were that much closer to the end.
Physically I really felt great until mile 20. Emotionally I was hurting for my right wing man, Cami. She got sick at mile 17 and had to pull back. Going on without her was the most painful thing about the race for me.
Thankfully I still had Meg to pace me.
As we got to mile 21 I started feeling tired, by mile 22 I had hit my wall. I had to dig deep to get through the next 3miles. I actually called one of my brothers but the poor guy was at work and couldn't talk. So instead I read the texts and listened to the voice mails the Samp's had left me. Then I thought about all the emotional and spiritual marathons I had ran already in my life. I thought about my mother in law and the cancer marathon that she is running. I thought about all the hard things that people in my family have done and it got me through that wall.
I just kept telling my self that I could do it. It's just one foot in front of the other. Until I got to the finish line.
I had my loved ones waiting for me and cheering me into the finish line.
We took a few pictures but it just wasn't right with Cami still out on the course.
(Notice that I am "J Slow" and Jessica R is "J Go!")
This is what a four hour pace looks like...
This next picture is when I was telling Aric that I needed to go back and find Cami. I had rested for about 30 minutes and I couldn't stand just sitting around waiting for her.
I found her less than a mile away, Stacey joined us to cross the finish line.
Now the picture is complete.
Cami and I ran through, hail, rain, wind and snow to train for this race. She ended up with some stomach issues but battled through them to finish it. I don't know if I could have done it.
In the end, I had the best race I could've hoped for. The weather was gorgeous, in fact it was almost too hot. I finished in under four and a half hours, which was more than I ever expected. I was determined to enjoy every minute of the race and have a smile on my face, and I did.
It's hard to put into words how it feels to accomplish such a huge goal. It's something I thought I could never do. I couldn't have done it with out my running partners, I LU HUUUUV them. I couldn't have done it without my wonderful husband and sister who watched the kids for SO many hours just so that I could get my training in.
(The men, minus Mark and Patrick, behind the women)
I share this accomplishment with them and with you, my other loyal fans. Your prayers and words of encouragement helped to drag my tired legs across the finish line.
So here is a high five to you!