Monday, September 1, 2014

Pink Floyd to the rescue, sorta…



Please bear with me guys.  I have way too much time on my hands time weekend. I was listening to Pink Floyd last night and it's like they were talking to me. I hope this makes you laugh too.

Comfortably Numb
by Pink Floyd

Hello? Hello? Hello?

Is there anybody in there?
Uh, ya, Me! Waiting to run again. Sick of the bike.

Just nod if you can hear me.
Is there anyone at home?

Yes, I'm right here, yes.  RICE'ing all day every day. Compression at night. 

Come on now
I hear your're feeling down.
Well I can ease your pain.
Get you on your feet again.

OMG, yes please! I have a marathon planned. Are you for real Pink Floyd? Let's do it!

I'll need some information first.
Just the basic facts.
Can you show me where it hurts?

Yes, yes! Laura Frey. I live in NC. From NH. But who cares. My leg hurts. My right leg. It's all jacked up. Right there. Yup, by the Soleus.

….

O.K.
Just a little pinprick
There'll be no more, ah!

Are you kidding me? Then I can run 6:30 pace again? Just like that?! What about tempo pace? What is this a Cortisone shot? Can we talk about tendon rupture first? Maybe I'll just foam roll now.

But you may feel a little sick.
Can you stand up?

Sick? Is this a joke? I don't care. I'll puke through a 22 miler, don't care.
Ya, standing isn't a problem. I need the run fixed Pink Floyd. The RUN!


Sigh. 


Just a little humor. I'm still sain, I think : )

Laura

My conversation with a bike shop employee



Morning Guys!

I'm now almost a week on the bike. My leg seems to stagnate for a day then it will feel a little better. It's promising. But the non linear fashion is driving my crazy!   My plan is to bike tomorrow, take Wednesday completely off and then run on Thursday.

But this weekend I wanted something epic to do on the bike. So I looked around and found a bike route called the Triple Hump. It runs up 3 mountains in central NC. My cycling peeps said I needed a bigger cassette to get up those grades. So I headed over to a bike store that was having a huge sale.

Me: Hi. What do I need to get up Pilot Mountain?

Bike Shop Employee: Legs

Me: (feeling the sarcasm and ready to pummel this guy. I respond with a monotone bitchslap) I have legs. That's a non issue. I am a ruthless, badass runner. I love pain. My energy and fitness transfer to the bike. I need to know what I need on my bike to get up the hill, please.

Bike Shop Employee: Ya know what? I don't doubt you. You need a 30…come over here.


The moral of the story is BELIEVE IN YOURSELF! If you don't, who will?  Do you know that intense focus on the faces of runners at the start of a race? I feel like that all day. I am gunning for it. I don't give a shit that I had a 0 mile week.

PS I'm human and a girl so a little retail therapy helped : )


Craft Cycling top
Garneau Cycling top. 

Stay strong Team Honey Badger!

Laura
XO

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Long Bike. Trying to use runner lingo on the bike feels awkward.


Happy Sunday Guys!

Today was not a run day. My soleus is still cranky. So I got on my bike. It was in the high 70's, low 80's so I was secretly happy that I wasn't running. I had a breeeeeeze!

The cool thing about the bike on a weekend is that I can pretty much go anywhere, do anything. Ya know, like reading rainbow. haha Please say you got that, lol.

So I rode from my house to the greenway and then out a county. 51 miles total.


Here are some pictures from my ride:




This was a great day! Oh, so I'm clearly bored after hours on the bike so I decided to make a video while riding. It was hysterical. I was dying. I couldn't wait to upload up it. But then, I edited it incorrectly and butchered it. I'll try again to kick some bike humor over this way. 

video
#notStevenSpielberg

So hang tight guys. Injury doesn't last forever. Let's make the most of it. Have a great Labor Day!

Laura





Saturday, August 30, 2014

Not so fast killa!

Hey Guys, Lovers, Haters and The Occasional Creeper!


I was hopeful that I would be thumping out 6:30 pace this morning. I have zero pain when walking or digging at my leg so I figured I would be good to go. I got up at 5am. Downed a gallon of coffee and headed out the door.

I took 10 strides and lunged back up the hill to my house.  I still get a zap in my mid leg. But the toe off is beautiful. Before that hurt too. So I feel that I'm almost there. I just have zero patience.

So I ripped off the booty shorts and threw them on the kitchen floor in protest and put on the dreaded bike shorts. Instant buzz kill. Paint me ugly. There is no feeling of stealth in those things. Sigh. But I'm doing what needs to be done.

Every year I get on the bike and my fear fades a little. Today I was hauling on the downhills. I think I got to 29.5mph. Which is about the top of my comfort zone on country roads with traffic. So dare I say it's kinda fun out there.

So I rode for as long as it took for my mind to unwind. Which was cut short by my aching ass. Sigh.

Mile 35ish

Stats:
41 Miles
16 mph avg
1611 feet of elevation
Time on bike: 2 HOURS 33 Mins.

Tomorrow if I'm on the bike I am going to try to hit 30mph on the downhill if physics will be so kind. I'm not sure if a 100lb person can pull that off. Any skinnies out there have success with that?

Thanks for listening. Hopefully my blog will turn around soon. But seriously, I google my fingers off looking for people in situations like mine. I hope this helps someone else.

Laters!!
Laura




Friday, August 29, 2014

I thought I broke my leg. That sucked!

Hey My Dears!

What a crazy week! It ends well but a tad bit stressful for a girl mid marathon training for a sub 2:55. Here are some views from my week-o-shit:
Running and Cycle gear explosion

This is for realz. I can't do this anymore!

Insert tears


The stairs. Kinda Badass. Try and beat that, seriously. It's hard!

It's broken, it's not, Close to 7 experts weighed in. 6 voted not broken. The tribe has spoken.

So, long story short. I killed myself on my last long run. I dehydrated. I ran way too early. Up and down 1000 feet in the pitch dark. Somewhere in there I must have twisted my ankle. It happens but usually doesn't effect me. But given the extreme heat and humidity that day I took a beating. I had a horrible pulling mid way up my outer calf. I had an X-ray done to rule out that I wasn't tugging on a stress fracture. My Ortho said I had a very low ankle stress fx all the way through the fibula. I cried and cried. But it didn't make sense. I didn't have pain there. And that was the site of an old stress fracture and clearly well healed.

So I figured maybe he had some beers at lunch and was confused. I gave my films to a few Orthos I know and asked for some opinions. They all independently agreed that I didn't not have any fracture. GREAT! But I still had a bum leg. It felt like a severe strain/sprain. So if you've been reading my blog long enough you know what that means!:

Monday: off

Tuesday: off

Wednesday: 1 hour of strength and stairs at the gym followed by Bike 1: 20 miles at 15mph. Then, Bike 2: 27 miles at 17.1 mph. Collaspe.

Thursday: 1 hour at the gym. Stairs, core and arms followed by 20 miles on the bike.

Friday: A little over an hour at the gym including the stairs, core, ball, arms, glutes. Then 31 miles on the bike on hills. 

It's now Friday night and I feel better. I hate that there is so much drama involved when I go out but timing is everything. And this timing was stressful. I may take tomorrow off and then start up again. Or maybe trot about and see how I feel. Or do a Century ride. Screw it! A special shout out to my cycling friends who know they will get a call when my Garmin runs stop posting. Missed you!

They say you learn a lot about yourself via the marathon. I think you learn more when that's taken away, even if for a few days. I learned a few things about myself this week:

*Crying is allowed for 30 minutes in your Ortho's parking lot. That is it. Move on.
*What's done is done. Deal with it.
*Everyone has an opinion as to how you wrecked yourself. Ignore them.
* Focus on what's ahead. Keep your mind and fitness well.
*If you're not my Coach, back off! I don't want any negativity. I'm on a mission. 
* I will succeed.
*I'm not a quitter.
*I have wonderful people in my life. 
*I have the most supportive Coach who is very talented at feeding my crazy even if we thought it was broken.
*My butt hurts from the bike, bad.
*Being out of commission feeds the fire. I'm gunning. For the mailbox, the street, 26.2.
*I hate pity.
*I'm grateful for all of you. 

Cheers to running again! 

Laura XO





Thursday, August 21, 2014

Another close call, gulp

Hey Everyone!

I'm sure you're wondering why I'm going blog-a-palooza lately. I guess I've missed sharing the good and the bad with you guys. Thankfully, it's been very good lately. I'm doing some marathon training that is unlike anything I've ever done before. Massive training blocks, hills, sprints, miles, doubles…It's so much fun that I feel like I should be doing more work. I've harassed my coach on several occasions for more mileage to which I have been shut down. haha. More on him later, I promise! It's good stuff!

But this post is more about recovery. I had a little scare that I ripped my own legs off, again. But my situation went from tragedy to triumph in less than a day. First here's how I ripped my calves off:

Saturday: 23 miles solo at 7:04 pace in high humidity and heat.
Sunday: 20 min warm up 3x60 meter hill strides, 4x4 minute hill repeats, 20 min cool down.
Monday: Off
Tuesday: 20 min warm up, 2x100 stride, 4x2 min hard hill, 5 min recovery, 10 min tempo at 6:15 pace, 20 min cool down. Wait for it….Double! 1 mile warm up at 7:24 pace, 3 miles sub marathon pace @ 6:25, 6:36, 6:24 and 1 cool down at 6:58 pace. It was 90 degrees at 2pm when I ran.

So I'm doing my happy dance by now! I feel strong, excited! I nailed distance and some sub marathon paces. Golden!

Then I woke up.

I woke up Wednesday hobbling. My calves were balls of steel. Most likely due to the fact I ran in a 4mm drop shoe for the fast double instead of the typical 14mm Adidas I normally use for speed. Ugh. I did my recovery run, a 7-miler and winced almost every footstep. I was sore, very sore. It was the slowest training run I've EVER done in my life. 8:50 pace.

So I contacted my LMBT, John Stiner. I said something to the effect of, "It's bad. I need help. I can't toe off." Like an Orca that just spotted a fat seal I think he was excited. He enjoys fixing people. I was in his studio later that day.
John Stiner, LMBT

Long story short. He worked on my calves and legs for close to 2 hours. Fiber by fiber unwinding the mess I made. I left feeling great. But I'm a skeptic. The truth would be the next day. My alarm went off. I still felt great. I headed out for my 6am run and it was like nothing ever happened. BRAND NEW legs. I was swearing in the dark of my cul de sac. Screaming thank you!!  Unbelievable, nothing less.

I've been fortunate to receive treatment by John for the last year. I was first floored when he took me from a hobbling walker to a runner in 24 hours here. You may remember he contacted me saying, "I read your blog. Get in here. I can fix you."  I've been hooked on maintenance ever since.

You guys know by now I only talk about product or service if I really believe in it. I'm not one to push product your way for the sake of a free water bottle from some random company. I perseverate, evaluate and really put thought into the companies and services promote. Which are like none, because I'm never happy. haha

But because I want all my running friends to have a similar story to mine I wanted to get this on my blog. I know there are so many people that say, "Oh, I have a LMT. It's great." NO, no and no! Not all LMBT's are created equal.

John Stiner, LMBT relocated to the NC just over 5 years ago in 2009. He worked with the Oregon Project 2008 in Park City, Utah and Eugene, Oregon. He worked with amazing talent such as Kara Goucher and Galen Rupp. He is a former 1:11/2:42 guy who loves the sport of running. "Loves the sport" is an understatement. He is savant on everything running. You'll get this when you meet him.

He will watch you walk and move for 10 minutes before even touching you. It's like he has X-ray vision and can see the problem. He WILL fix it. And then he'll tell you what to do on your own to stay healthy. His intent is not to see you back on the table but to get that thank you letter. He wants to hear that you feel great and raced well. That is why he's in this business.

He is the reason I'm gearing up for my 2nd marathon this year. I feel indestructible. My muscles are long, soft and healthy from continuous monthly maintenance. It is such a great feeling to know I can mess up like I did and I can be fixed. It's peace of mind.

I recommend putting John in your contacts so if you rip your legs off like me you know there is a solution!!
Website
Facebook Page
Phone number: 919-381-7006

He is located in Durham off I-40. 5 minutes off 540.

Thanks for reading. I want the best for all of us. I have an EPIC weekend on deck that is almost making me nervous! I can't wait!!

As always, happy running!

Laura






Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Grit

Happy Wednesday My Dears!

I dictated this post to Siri because I feel we as runners need a little pick me up about now. I touched on it during the winter. See here. But again, I see the vibe on social media. I hear what everyone is saying. I'm here to tell you that you are doing GREAT! Great, despite:

*wretchedly high temps
* high humidity
*dehydration
*sun burns
*feeling sick all day post long run
*swollen feet
*tearful long runs
*feelings of failure

I live in North Carolina. It's sick and nasty for a good 3 months out of the year. We are almost to the end. Fall is near! But I see some of you, and sometimes me, who want to throw in the towel, quit this shit, get your life back, become a cyclist, play softball.  DON'T DO IT!

I do not have the attention span to write or read a long drawn out, paragraph laden post so let's go bullet style on this one.

 You are a ROCKSTAR if you are running with any type of remote consistency during the summer months in the South or similar climate.

When you head out the door every morning remember these things:

*humidity is our altitude. Don't make me google statistics, please. Take it for face value and trust me. If you can survive running is high humidity you are working just as hard as those high in the sky. So like, we've all read before: humidity is the poor man's altitude. Embace the suck.

*Speed. I'm just going to throw out a statistic on my recent study involving N=1. You will suck on your garmin but you really don't suck. I would say a 6:35 pace tempo run will feel like a 6:15 pace. I'm pretty good at judging effort and this seems about right. Even if I'm off a little it's good for your ego. Running is mostly mental, right?! You are a Supa-star darling!

*Keep your mind strong. You did not shit on your spring fitness. You're not a has been. You're not an old man/lady. Your fitness is actually stronger. It's just hiding. As soon as the first cool week comes through we'll all be giselles bouncing through the greenway sans water bottle.

*The hardest part of all of this is not the embarrassing pubic sweat on a group run, but rather it is keeping your MIND strong. It's easy to fade into the land of "I suck" and throw in the towel. But hopefully if you're still running with me you know it's too late now.  You've sacrificed too much. The end is near. We are like Submarine the shark (shark week reference) that can smell the chum in the water 5 miles away. Don't get blinded by the light! Keep going forward and get to your race and kick some fucking ass!!! And then tell me all about it.

Stay strong Honey Badgers!! We have got this!! You have my love and support.




This will turn into…
Your equally insane running friend,
THIS, soon!

Laura XO


Monday, August 18, 2014

In the long run…

Hey Guys!

My wit is about as shitty as the summer weather conditions here in the North Carolina. So, I'm having trouble keeping you entertained! But, when all else fails we can talk about running! Running forever! Long runs!  The "get your ass there or you'll have to explain why you suck on social media" run.

I have changed my training some. This marathon cycle I have a lot more 20+ milers. Before I did 1-2 total pre race. Before it was a big deal to run 20 miles. Now, it's becoming customary every Saturday.

My last 3 long runs were:

8/2: 20 miles. Every 4th at marathon pace. About 6:35-6:45 goal on the fast miles.  My average pace was 6:56 and the last 10k was uphill. A great run!

8/9: 20 miles. 10 hard/10 easy. Avg 6:50 pace. It was pouring rain so hard I have no idea how that one happened. I think the term hard was relative that day.

8/16: 23 miles. This was a time on feet run. Personally, I prefer to spend more time on my ass than my feet so it was at 7:04 avg pace. No fast miles. It was 100% humidity and the temps started at 72 and finished at 80 degrees. I think I was stabbing myself in the eye after 2 hours. I dropped my nutrition and had maybe 10oz of water. Certainly, a toughen the *uck up run.
*this day had a 4 mile double at night at 8 pace.

All my runs start no later than 6am and are solo. It's kind of lonely but there aren't many takers who like this distance so early.  I carry a handheld water bottle and 2 gels. No stopping allowed. I try to keep my serious face on for as long as possible. I start each run like there is a starting line. I don't have the patience or personality to shit around for 2+ hours.


I try not to waste ANY energy with emotional junk, crying about humidity, exaggerated arm swing, an unsecured hair bun…I try to get the cadence under control and just move without thinking for as long as I can.

That turns into…Why the hell am I training in the summer?! Can I please get to mile 15?!

Which inevitably turns into: I'm a mother *uc*ing badass, it's time to fuc* this shit up and go! I've never felt crappy the last 5k of a long run. Mostly because I'm so excited to say I DID IT!






















This weekend I have a harder 20 miler on deck. I may put out water bottles pre run because my hand and arm kill me after a while. And no, I do not possess the talent to switch hands. Which is why I dropped my gel last weekend. Too fancy for me!

I hope you are all doing well and getting in some distance. Fall in almost here!! Happy Running!

Laura

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Knock knock, it's me!!

Hello out there!!!!

It's me, your horribly truant blogger!!

I feel terrible for not updating since, uh Boston 2014 pretty much. I think of you guys all the time and tried to will myself to post but in the end I succumbed to: slacker-itis. Also, I became a Master! So maybe I'm just forgetful now? haha

But fear no more. I am going to keep you up to date on my current training, successes and fails. Even if it's short. Because it's good stuff lately!

I know pictures rock so I'll try to go through 4 months in photos.
Start of summer 2014 in North Carolina
YES, it's hot in the Carolina's. I refuse to acclimate. 

I try to beat the heat and get up by 4:30am 7 days a week.

I run hills in the dark at times. THAT sucks!



So I nailed down a little fitness with the help of my new coach. He deserves his own blog post. I hate to throw him in the middle of my sweaty photos so hold tight on that!

I decided after years of not racing anything under a half to throw myself to the dogs. I did 5k's, 10k's, 15k's…track races…I wanted to flush out the fear of the shorter stuff. So I went on a racing binge for 5 weeks. IT. WAS. FUN! 

18:44 July 2014

Hey, it's been YEARS. I didn't get the memo about no iPod in a 5k. lol

My Mum

4th of July. 10k turned 12k. 


Summer running

Then I got on board for probably the BEST race EVA! Boilermaker 2014 in Utica NY. It's the largest 15k road race I believe in the country, if not the world. I think it was close to 14,000 runners. I placed 4th Master, 4th American, 20th female, 200th runner overall. This was the course:


9.3 miles in 58:52. 6:19 pace on a hot and humid day.

Here are some Boilermaker pictures:
Top 4 Masters. Olympian Jen Rines, far left

Fernando Cabada!

No caption needed. The Godfather of Masters Running Kevin Castille.

The start of Boilermaker. I. have. balls.

58 minutes later, the finish is right there! July 2014

So until now, the summer was rocking! But I had to throw in one more race. So I did the USATF Masters Championships 5000 on the track. My first track race ever. It was fun. I did it for the experience more so than the time. I was 6 days off Boilermaker and kinda fried. I ran the same time as my 3 other 5k's in the previous weeks. 18:44. 


I'm in the yellow top with my very own chase pack while in 2nd place before getting my ass handed to me.


And today. After a few months in the heat and humidity I've clearly lost my fashion sense! Oopsie!



So that's my running in a nutshell.  I am training for a fall marathon. I can't wait to get past these wrenched temps and high humidity. I've never trained for or ran a fall marathon and now I understand why! It's hard work and takes absolute dedication. Extreme focus as well. I love it more than I hate it though!

I hope you guys are doing well. I still stalk your blogs and social media to check up on you. 

Peace out yo and happy running!!

Laura




Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Live and Let Live!





Good Morning Guys!!

I am probably preaching to the choir here because I always receive such support and encouragement from my everyone who follows my blog. But, it's my blog and I feel a rant coming. Please understand. Feel free to X out. But I hope some of you feel me on this. Sometimes I scratch my head at the things people say.

I don't put a lot about my personal life on my blog. It's not a diary. It's supposed to be about running, racing, and conning every muscle fiber I have to play along. And encouraging someone else that all of this is wicked fun!

But I've received a few comments lately that have pissed the living shit out of me. Such as:

*do you have a job?
*Is everyday like the weekend for you?
*So you have lots of downtime while the kids are in school..right?

 Please keep in mind I have 3 children in elementary school. Before that I worked 2 jobs for most of my life to pay off my 100k college education. I worked as a dishwasher when I was 12. I worked after school in high school. I worked 3, yes 3 jobs during college and maintained a perfect gpa. When my twins were born I hated to leave them. I would wait until 10pm when they were in bed and I'd go to the gym. I'd run. Then wake up at some ungodly hour to 2 screaming babies and do it all again. I still hate to leave them, so I run when they are sleeping most of the time. Blah, blah, blah...

But you know what? This is all irrelevant. It shouldn't matter. I don't pick on my friends that have jobs or any lifestyle that is different from mine. I don't whine that someone else may get to punch out while my job never ends. I don't care if you run in an Alter G and get daily massages.  To each his own! Put on your shoes and let's go for a run!

Who cares!! We all have our own lives. We all make it happen. I love hearing how people cope with life and still manage to train and succeed. There are so many phenomenal people out there that have a balls out training ethic. I admire you.

I would never say or even think anything negative. Some have it worse and some have it better. But that's life. Why can't we all be happy for one another?  Kumbaya?

These questions seem to pop up when my running is going well. Almost insinuating that my athletic achievements are a result of me sitting on my ass all day.  Whether or not I sit on my ass all day or not is no ones business. However, if you would like me to drop my 3 kids off on your doorstep at 7am I can arrange that.

3 kids, 10 kids, 1 job or 5. This is my personality and I will always get the job done. I'm a tough cookie.

Everyone has their own story. We all bond through our love for the sport of running. Live and let live!



Thanks for listening! That ends my rant : )
Laura

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Afterthoughts on Boston 2014

Hey guys!

It's never so easy as a high 5 at the finish line for me. I have analyzed and ridiculed my every footstep of that race to try and find my take away lessons. So far, I'm 50/50 on how I feel about my performance. I'm very upset that I didn't get my sub 2:55. Ok, fine, me and 30,000 others it seems. But then again I'm grateful I didn't tank so hard like so many other amazing athletes did. It could have been worse.

I guess this is the problem when you only run 1 marathon a year. It got too hot. I died. End of story. I don't think there was anything I could have done to help me in the later stages of the race. So for that I feel I did my best.

So what is next? I'm not sure yet but my leisurely summer of swimming and biking may be over taken by another stab at marathon training. Maybe. I'm testing the waters and seeing how I feel this week. My first run back was a 10 miler at 7:10 pace and then a 9 miler a little faster. So it appears I may be back at my usual very soon. I took 3 days off. Well, I swam and walked.

I don't want my fitness to go to shit. I want satisfaction at 26.2 this year. I don't want a slow death that still looks spiffy to some. Screw that! I didn't train for spiffy. No way! So I'll keep the wheels turning, both physically and mentally until I figure out my plan for the summer.

Here are some race pics:



My mom and my sister right after I finished.

That smile took everything I had. 
Y'all know the Citgo sign. Mile 25.
In the cab a few hours post race heading to BOS
I found this in a BAA feed. That's my bun!
Day 2. The dog and stairs. Ouch.

I hope you guys are recovering well. Thank you for all the awesome feed back!! Have a great weekend!

Laura

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

The Boston Marathon 2014!!

Hey Guys!

I don't even know where to start! Boston 2014 was quite possibly the most amazing display of humanity ever. Boston pumped love, perseverance, support, empathy every second, all weekend. I have never in my life experienced this type of non-stop caring and selflessness from every single person I bumped into during my entire trip. Everyone wanted to help make the next person smile. It was contagious.  It is one thing to read about it or hear it on the news but the experience was simply amazing. Beyond words, but I will try.

I left home on a flight to Boston kind of freaked out by the incident earlier in the week at the finish line. I couldn't handle it again this year. I couldn't deal with hoaxes either. I was kind of on edge not knowing what to expect. I happen to meet an older gentleman in the airport who was headed home to Boston. We started talking but had to board. Thankfully, he ended up sitting next to me on the plane, by chance. He has lived in Newton for over 40 years and has cheered for the Boston Marathon runners for just as long. In conversation I asked him, "are you afraid, at all?" He emphatically said no. He explained how he would not let fear torture him anymore. This was his city. This was their city. He basically explained the term we all know as Boston Strong. He was a honey badger of sorts. I said, ya know, you're right. I deplaned with a new attitude. 


I arrived Saturday night so that day was gone. I awoke Sunday morning and did my shake out run and showered before leaving for the expo. My coach and I met up and went in to get our bibs, jackets and hopefully leave soon.  That was a fail. 

To pick up your race bib you need your ID. I lost my ID at security in the airport but I had 2 other forms of photo ID. So I asked the lady holding my number to accept an alternative form of identification. She said no loud and clear. She sent me to here:

Long story short. They said: no ID, no bib. My immediate response to this was a complete and total meltdown into hysterical, uncontrollable sobbing. For many of my close friends you all know I don't cry! I later made jokes that I didn't know why water was coming out of my eyes. lol. So anyways, the waterworks didn't sway them. After a few minutes of this the police started to gather as my coach tried to fix the situation with an escalating voice. I said, let's go. We are not getting arrested for crying! I went back to my hotel on another $25 cab ride to hopefully find my ID in my luggage. Luckily, I found it in my laptop case!! I could run now! I took another $25 cab ride back to the expo with my bloated face and dried tears and got my bib. YAY!

My day was planned out pretty well by this point and I had to move along. Next, I had planned to meet my new running BFF from Texas that I met online in a Boston Bound run club. We have motivated each other for 16+ weeks and ran and compared notes on every painstaking mile. We were beyond elated to run Boston during such a special year. Just as I imagined Lisa was so sweet, kind and beautiful on top of being a phenomenal marathon runner with a hardcore training program that I have admired from day 1. : )


By now a few hours had passed and my eyes weren't so puffy. Perfect because it was dinner time with my gorgeous sister and loving mother who probably expended more energy crewing me all weekend than I spent running a marathon. 


After dinner I was ready for bed. I laid out my outfit, gels and shoes and prepared my drop bag. Then passed out…until my 4am alarm. But who the heck cares! It's time to run the Boston Marathon!! Sleep wasn't needed Sunday night. I had enough energy to run 2 marathons, so I thought. lol.

I took a shuttle from the hotel at 5:15 to the Boston Commons to catch the bus to Hopkinton. Pretty smooth. Our bus driver took us to the drop off location for the charity runners accidentally. Normally, that would be alarming but we had 3 hours to spare so it wasn't a big deal. Next up we sat on the grass for 3 hours waiting to be loaded into our corrals. Again, it's all part of Boston. No one really complains.  It was about 41 degrees while I was sitting in the grass but over the next few hours it warmed up. People started stripping down early. I refused to make any negative weather comments at that point because nothing could be changed. This was my race day and I was going to deal.

Okay, now let's talk splits, strategy and focus! My official goal was 2:55 but it really was 2:54 inside. I just couldn't say it out loud. I felt very prepared and confident in my training and fitness. I was going to do this because it's what I trained for. It wasn't a stretch for the shape I was in. 

The gun went off and we started to move. This year I was in corral 4 as opposed to 5 last year. 4 was smoother. People ran! It was all good until the 30K. Then I fought dehydration and the chills on and off till the end. The best way I can describe it from that point on is that I felt like I had woke up hungover on a beach with a sunburn and then someone clapped their hands and said GO, go run a marathon, and now!


 I ran through the hills as the sun stole my energy. I didn't care, I had a gel for that. Around 21-22 people started cramping an getting sick. The sides of the race course were littered with runners cramping and crying. It was hard to look at. People who had elite bibs on their back were running 8 pace. I saw many of my friends trotting along. I always slowed down and said, c'mon let's go! Some people just stared back at me in pain. It was horrible. I wanted everyone to be happy and run well. 

I did okay through Newton and Heartbreak Hill, but I didn't fair so well on all those smaller hills afterwards. At one point I refused to look ahead because I didn't want to see another hill. My splits went in the shitter. My garmin average pace plummeted. But oddly enough, it didn't matter at that point. I didn't do my usual bratty face and stomp home a fail. I kept looking at the crowd. They were willing me and the others with their eyes to keep going. I felt it. I shuffled harder. I saw so many people walking within a mile of the finish. It killed me. I wanted to help. 

By now I wasn't looking at my garmin for sanity reasons. I knew I blew my goal but was still sub 3. I crossed the finish line and almost smashed into a wall of stopped runners heaving, hands on knees 2 feet beyond the second timing mat. It was not a happy joyous time when I initially looked around. People were trashed.

This included me. I didn't realize how badly I hurt until I tried to walk. My legs were shit. I started shivering so badly that medics kept trying to scoop me up. I smiled and tried to will my shivers to stop and said no thank you. Then it got worse. It was obvious I was freezing. I kept refusing help. Then a kind spectator gave me her jacket an her husbands jacket and piled them on me. She would not accept no. It was embarrassing to shiver like that. I just wanted to be normal! 

Keep in mind these events took what seemed like hours. I couldn't find my family. I couldn't do anything useful. I wanted by body back! But I had to go to the loo…..

The loo was an experience in itself. I hope I'm only speaking to marathon runners right now. lol. But I learned that fried quads do not assist in trying to squat over a port a john seat. My dainty squat turned into an ass slam on a nasty dirty port a john seat! I fell. I was appalled and disgusted and even worse, I could not get up off the seat! I wanted to cry and bang on the door for help but decided against that. haha. So I grabbed the pipe that is in the corner of the john and hoisted myself upright. GREAT, but I still needed to pull up my shorts. I have never laughed so hard while in pain and filth, by myself in a john. But in true honey badger style I washed my hands with antibacterial and exited ready for a selfie, like nothing happened. 

So finally, I was reunited with my mom and sister. AKA my 2 new crutches. I was falling apart even worse. I hadn't yet had food or water post race. I think my mom ripped a banana out of a kids hand and gave it to me. It helped. I was starting to come around. We slowly walked to the Commons for my drop bag. Another hour passed. We sat in the sun for about 30 minutes. It was a gorgeous day punctuated with runners on all 4's vomiting throughout the Commons. It was like The Sound of Music meets a scene from the Termintor.

From that point on it was a slow hustle to catch a cab, go to the hotel and then the airport. It ended so abruptly. But I had to get my kids to school in the morning. Life goes on!
my son's class and my sister's class tracking me. So cool!!



It was a whirlwind weekend but of the best type. I can't thank you all enough for every kind word throughout my training and this weekend. I definitely do not exist in a vacuum. Without all my friends and family and all the amazing people I have met along the way this would not have been possible. Thank you!!! 



PS you know I'm praying to the quad gods for a quick recovery. 2:55 or bust is coming next!

Thanks for reading!!
Laura
aka your 2:58 Boston Specialist 
(I did 2:58 last year as well)