I don’t think I will ever forget the many lessons I learned after literally walking into a marathon with NO training.
It’s 3 am wake up. Fed the baby and kissed both kids and hubby. It’s really happening. I’ve arrived and I see all the runners. Everyone is there all pumped up. Loud music is playing and I’m starting to feel good forgetting that Shay hasn’t run at all and hoping I’m getting fueled by everyone’s energy. We get to HTT suite. Everyone is fired up, relaxed and exited for the run. It hit me again all these folks in the room had been training!
Someone asked me if I was OK since I looked nervous. Inside I was freaking out. What the heck did I get myself into? But everyone is fired up and there’s so much shared energy. I’m back to “I can do this”.
The race has started. I’m running with 7 of the Hirshberg Training Team members and we are off. I was feeling good remembering JR’s words of wisdom “ Enjoy the Journey.”
I was trying very hard to keep up with the 7 members. By mile 3 I couldn’t and it was OK. I was tired and obviously this shows you when you TRAIN, how the stamina is built. By mile 7 my hamstring was killing me. Mile 8, I got down for some stretches. Then I kept going and going. It was a slow jog walk now. A woman went by me and saw how hard I was pushing and I told her all the reasons and also I had to get home to feed my 8 month old which was pushing my butt too. Mile 10 -Good thing I had my knee support
I reached mile 13. I stopped and said OMG I have 13.2 miles to go- how will I do this?
At this point the streets were already starting to get cleaned, they removed signage, no mile markers nothing.
I got to mile 14 and a cop asked weren’t you the gal running at mile 7 and holding your right leg and now holding it at 14. I said yes that was me. He says wow you are a warrior. Got some energy off that and kept going.
It is mile 15 and it was getting harder and it was getting cold. I didn’t see many runners. People walked by saying to stop – the tracking system is off the streets I can stop now. So I said no and kept going. Seemed like the longest walk ever. Walking through the VA grounds crying no way I can do this. Whatever I had done would mean nothing if I’m not going to cross the finish line. I was mentally saying you got this go-go!
I saw the purple balloons and I knew I had reached the cheer section mile 21.2. The whole reason I’m doing this is to RAISE MONEY FOR PANCREATIC CANCER. The crowds had long since cleared but I still felt the energy and that gave me another burst of go Shay go keep going. Well I probably walked 5 min and started crying again should I stop I’m crazy I went this far.
A man out of nowhere showed up and said, “Are you ok? I’ll walk with you.” A lady drove by in her car and asked, “Do you need water?”
I was so grateful. There were 27 more blocks for me to walk. Many things came to mind as I was doing this. I’m so dang crazy, why didn’t I train, what am I thinking? 27 blocks seems so far and then, I started getting texts saying “Shay, smell the Ocean, you are almost there don’t give up!”
I kept going one foot in front of the other. At this point I’m not running with the elite. My goal was to complete this marathon.
At block 27 two gals came to help me. These two gals walked with me every block and they encouraged me every single step. Their shared energy was the runners high I was waiting for.
If I could run I would have but I couldn’t. So one foot in front of the other I went.
I did pick up my speed as now I’m at block 4. And around the corner is the finish line.
Well I turned the corner it was about 5 more blocks. At this point I had no choice, but to finish. There was no way I could stop now.
I could see the light from the finish line. There wasn’t the big sign I was hoping to cross there was no glorified finish line, but there was a line mark where 26.2 ended. I crossed it …
Everyone is high fiving me asking me what made me continue. I told them, I had my goal to finish, I was raining money for pancreatic cancer and I don’t quit. People donated and I had made a commitment. I’m happy to say I am not a quitter and I put those words to action.
I did enjoy it and I learned so many lessons like train, train, train and plan. No one will get you across unless you want it. Mentally, I had to control my thoughts to get across the finish line.
I know most think I was nuts for not stopping but when you have a CAUSE you are fighting for and the vision to get there, nothing will stop you. I promised even if I crawled across the finish line I was finishing.
Pain subsides, BUT this memory of how I completed will last me my lifetime. I can promise this when I do this again I will train and finish the run in 4 hours now that is a PROMISE for next time and once I make a commitment there is no stopping me. LET’S KICK CANCERS BUTT!