these 2 miles went by pretty fast. kat and i were together and just talked about how cold it was and how we couldn’t feel our toes at all. there was a water station at mile 2 and although i was freezing and didn’t necessarily want water, i knew i needed to stay as hydrated as possible. it was here that kat and i unintentionally split up. i lost her in the crowd!
-good luck, kat! i know you can do it!!
i don’t remember anything in particular about these miles. there was a GU station at mile 4. i got strawberry banana flavor. yum! i passed through the water station at mile 7 and some guy said something to me about ice. i quickly realized that he was telling me to watch out for the ice on the road. it was so cold outside that the water people were discarding was freezing almost instantly. CRAZY! at the end of mile 7 there was a good sized crowd of people cheering. it was really encouraging!
-i’m over 25% done! i still have a looong way to go! i’m still freezing!
this was probably the prettiest part of the route. it went through highlands and avondale. somewhere around mile 8 or 9 my bladder reached capacity.
-noooo! i DO NOT want to have to wait in line to go pee!
since there was a total of 5,000 runners running the first loop, there were lines to use the bathroom. the average line was probably 4 people, but that was 4 people too many for me! i didn’t want to add several minutes to my time waiting in line to pee.
-just try to hold it ‘til after the course splits!
i went through another GU station at mile 8. vanilla! i was still feeling good and FINALLY starting to warm up. i decided to toss one of the two pairs of gloves i was wearing.
-over 33% done!
-this first loop seems really long. i really have to do this whole thing AGAIN?!
shortly into mile 12, the runners were divided: the 4,000 half marathoners were directed to the right side of the road and the 1,000 full marathoners were directed to the left side of the road.
-i can’t believe i’m one of the runners on the left side!
although i was mostly happy to be on the left side, i couldn’t help but feel jealousy toward the runners on the right side. they were almost done and i wasn’t even half way done.
-OH NO! my ankle! NOOOOO!
at this point in the race, my ankle just barely started to hurt. i flashed back to the last 15 miler i ran before the marathon. on that run, out of nowhere, my left ankle, which up until that point had never given me any trouble, started to hurt so bad that it brought tears to my eyes. it eventually went away though and i forgot all about it. i didn’t even think that it could become an issue during the marathon. i slowed down a bit and prayed it wouldn’t get any worse.
-where is casey?! i hope we don’t miss each other!
suddenly i hear, “GO SHEENA! WOOOOOOO!!” what perfect timing! i looked over to see casey and hank cheering for me! it made me feel so loved and happy to see my main squeeze enduring the freezing weather to support me! i smiled, waved, and i’m pretty sure “raised the roof” at them. i felt like an appropriate roof raising moment.
finally the course split. the half marathoners stayed straight and the full marathoners turned right. just as i suspected, with 4,000 less runners on the course, there were no lines to use the bathroom. the first port-a-potty i saw was unoccupied!
-YES!! this is perfect! especially since i’m about to burst!
the door wouldn’t latch so as i was squatting, i was also holding the door shut. all of a sudden, i felt the door pulling open. i pulled it back…
-someone is in here!
the door pulled open again. i saw a woman standing there, but she wasn’t the one pulling the door open. i pulled the door shut again.
-SOMEONE IS IN HERE!!
i heard the woman say, “i think someone’s in there.”
the door pulled open AGAIN. this time it was pulled with enough force to open significantly enough for the culprit, an old man, to see me in there…still squatting.
-OH MY GOSH! I’M IN HERE!!!!!!
the old man looked shocked as he said, “OH, SORRY!!” why did he think the door kept slamming shut every time he tried to open it?! i didn’t really care that much and i wasn’t embarrassed. it was more ridiculous than anything else!
when i finally had some privacy and finished peeing, i discovered that there was no toilet paper.
it was at that moment that i decided i didn’t need my beanie anymore, if you catch my drift…
exiting the port-a-potty feeling much better, i took a deep breath and set out to do exactly what i had just done one more time.
-i CAN do this. i WILL do this.