For the past 4 months, I have been training for the Ogden marathon. I am getting old and my body has lots of aches and pains. I just kept praying that I would stay injury-free until the marathon. Running is hard enough without a broken ankle or a bum knee.
What I hadn't considered as a hinderance to my race was Aunt Flo's visit. If there are any men reading this blog entry, Aunt Flo is the code name used by many women for . . . the monthly menstrual cycle. I know, I know . . . gross!!
Well, when Aunt Flo comes to visit me, she causes horrible problems when I run. I suffer from fatigue, breathing problems, "pirate stump legs" (this is when you feel like you are running on peg legs instead of the real ones attached to your hips), and other obvious problems like bloating, weight gain, etc . . . The worst problem with Aunt Flo is the potty problems she brings with her visits. I usually have to use the restroom about 6-8 times during a long, Saturday run if Aunt Flo is in town. Looking at the calendar, I realized that Aunt Flo would probably come to town the day before the race or the day of. I had been training for a PR, but I had to reevaluate. I knew it would be impossible to run fast for any length of time with my dreaded female problem.
Low and behold, on our drive up to Ogden, Aaron and I passed a truck that said, "Got Poop?" on the side. I knew it was an omen of things to come during the race.
We got to our hotel, checked in, and went to our room to clean up for dinner. Surprise, surprise . . . Aunt Flo arrived in town at the exact same moment that we did!!
I decided not to let Aunt Flo get me down even though Aaron and I were supposed to be celebrating our 19th wedding anniversary. Poor guy!
We woke up the next morning to rain. Lots and lots of rain. It rained on our walk to the marathon bus. It rained while we were in line for the porta potties. It rained while we stood in line for the race to start. Aaron told me the night before that the rain might actually be my friend. "If you have to poo during the race, just go in your pants. The rain will wash it away." Am I married to a comedian or what?!
Caleb and I ran together the first 9 miles of the race. I was quite an annoyance. Both of my water bottles fell out of my pack. A nice man retrieved one. Caleb picked up the other and carried it for me. After mile 9, Caleb decided to drop back and do his own thing. I kept running, waiting for the potty problems to start. I think my body was in shock from the rain and cold temperatures, because low and behold, I never had to stop to use the restroom.
My legs started to fatigue badly about Mile 16. Those hills are killers.
I gasped, "You go ahead. I'm too tired."
Caleb took off like a bullet. He looked like a pro. That brother of mine is amazing! He reached his goal time of 3:15.
I got a PR of 3:16:16. It was exhausting. It was hard. It was basically a miracle.
After the race, my body temperature dropped quickly. I started shaking uncontrollably. It was not enjoyable. I stayed in the hot shower when we got back to the hotel for about 25 minutes to try to warm up.
I will never forget this race: Aunt Flo, the rain, the cupcakes . . .
We celebrated after the race with lots of food. I found a cupcake shop that sold gluten-free cupcakes and promptly bought and ate two. Delicious!