Redemption is sweet. No. Redemption is badass. I know, because I finally got it on Sunday at the Chicago marathon. All the hard work, the tears, the past failures, the mind numbing fear, the emotional and physical exhaustion of it all... it paid off. Finally. The third time really is the charm. I could go on and on with that stuff, but I won't. So here's the goods.
Official Chicago Marathon Finishing Time:
It was hot, really hot. At mile 20 we saw a Bank sign that said 86 degrees, at the finish line we heard 91 degrees. All the stupid hot and humid runs paid off for the Kansas girls. Our saving grace was that there was little humidity, so the heat was bearable. I have so much to say, so many pictures coming, and just so many thoughts that I don't know where to start.
I had the pleasure of running this race with a lot of friends, in all (with friends of friends and dad's) there were eight of us who all knew each other there running together. We even started together which was so much fun. It really helped calm my nerves honestly. Out of the eight, four of us had PRs, those are pretty great odds in my opinion. The fantastic news was that everyone had a great race, despite the heat. It was pretty incredible really.
So instead of blathering on and on, I'm just going to highlight it in a list, of course. Would I do it any other way? Later I'll try and post pictures and write stories, or maybe not. I'm still holding this race pretty close to my heart (which is the biggest reason I haven't posted on it yet), some things I just like to keep inside (believe it or not) and cherish.
So let's get listy.
10 Things From Chicago 10.10.10:
1. I ran that marathon with so much hope and work invested, and it paid off. I never once felt like I was pushing myself, I kept an easy pace and I had a blast. I wouldn't change a thing about how I ran it, or the time I got. I am beyond thrilled.
2. Snagging a 41 minute marathon PR. I'm still sort of in disbelief I did that, in all honestly I was expecting my time to be around 4:45.
3. Sharing this experience with remarkable women who I love dearly. This marathon will always mean a lot to me, it was a truly priceless experience.
4. Mile 10.3 or so, I had the chance to run over to my family who were there cheering us all on and stop (sort of) to say hi and smile at them. It was fantastic getting to really see them! I had called the Edder a few miles beforehand to see where they were going to be, so we could be prepared for a photo op of course, he assumed something went horribly wrong. I was thrilled to tell him all I wanted to know is where they were going to be. Then he was all... WHO CALLS SOMEONE DURING A MARATHON... um. Me. Because uh, just keep reading.
5. Like I mentioned, and as I'm sure a lot of you heard, Chicago was HOT. There were a lot of runners suffering that day, I heard a lot of ambulances, saw a lot of runners on the side of the road, saw some vomiting, limping and saw some tears. The looks on the faces alone were heart breaking for me. I can honestly say I wanted to run over to each and every one of those runners and give them a hug and tell them I know exactly how they felt... and that it would be okay, eventually. That the physical pain and bruised ego fade and it will be okay. Every time I heard an ambulance I cringed... I think that was the most difficult part of the marathon for me, seeing the carnage, knowing exactly what those runners were feeling. It was rough out there on Sunday.
6. Running through Boy's Town. Whooo do those boy's have some spirit, they can sure entertain some runners, hands down my favorite spot on the course! From their shortie shorts, to sparkly jazz hands, boas and batons, to the cheer routines. Just spectacularly hilarious and fun.
7. Calling my lovely and badass running buddy Hannah at mile 7.5 while she and the Wichita running group were around mile 5 in the Prairie Fire Marathon at home (that race started later than Chicago). Good stuff.
8. Seeing some great signs along the way, including a huge banner and stick heads of one guy asking a girl to marry him. Precious and heart melting. My other favorite sign was one that read "you are all very good at exercising." I laughed over that one for a good mile.
9. Calling The Lawyer a few minutes after finishing to tell her my time and just plain talk to her. Hearing her voice, her excitement for me, the squealing, it was all I needed to complete my finish. Period.
10. Crossing the finish line with a huge smile on my face.