Tag Archives: Marathon

2012 Philly Marathon – Inspiration Through Spectating

First of all, I was supposed to run this marathon with Melissa. I made a promise.  I figured I could run two marathons two weeks apart. I had a bib. Same story: Sandy happened, NYC cancelation happened, Richmond Marathon happened. I decided last minute to sit out of Philly. I was relatively sore after the Richmond and to be honest I’m not talented enough to run two marathons in one week yet and I am definitely to injury prone. I felt like a dick and apologized for 24 hours straight but I had to look out for myself. I did not want to get hurt. Best Solution: Spectate the shit out of the race with Erica and Beth.

I had already made plans to stay at Shannon’s house (roomie from HLS) with Kara and Ritsa, who were running the half. Shannon was an amazing hostess. She welcomed us into her home and cooked us an amazing pasta dinner (that she did not even eat because she is on the Paleo diet)! Philly was her first marathon. She did all of this for us instead of panicking in the corner like I did before my first marathon. Kudos Shannon!

We got there early and met up with Melissa. I hugged her about 14 times and wished her a billion good lucks!

Me, Shannon & Melissa

I went to find my cheering crew and found Ashley & Kristin. More good lucks and more hugs. I also handed out an elephant sticker to everyone, extra good luck to stay with them during the race!

After I said my good lucks to everyone, I went off to cheer for the marathon!

My serious photog face

Photo Credit: Erica

I saw so much and experienced so many emotions from 7:00 am-4:00 pm. I saw the marathon winners, elites throwing up and still maintaining a sub-5 minute pace, leg cramps that stopped runners of all speeds in their tracks, families running to the finish with their marathon participants, tears, laughter, disappointment, ear-to-ear smiles, triumph and most of all COURAGE.

I cried way more times than I can remember. I was proud of every single marathoner. Kara and I stayed out and cheered on the course for a very long time. It was the best thing we could have done. We cheered, yelled, high-fived, low-fived, jumped, chanted, and danced for the runners. I have respect for every single person that crossed that finish line. I am SO happy that the race organizers put everyone’s name on their bibs! Cheering for the runners was made even easier 🙂

Below is a slide show (that of course uploaded backwards) of my pictures from the race! If you see a picture of yourself, feel free to take it as a memento. There are a few that I love that i want to seek out the runners myself!

Thank you Philly for putting on an amazing event, and for welcoming all of the NYC Marathoners with open arms! Congratulations to all of the finishers and to the NYC Marathoners who changed their plans and completed the race successfully, especially to Abby, Jocelyn, Shannon, MelissaAshley & Kristin. PRs all around! It was a pleasure to cheer for all of you and I am SO proud of all of you.

Richmond Marathon

Cliff Notes: I did 9+1 in 2011 to have guaranteed entry into the 2012 NYC Marathon. I started training in the summer. I became much faster than I used to be. I fractured my foot. I was angry at everyone. I got better. I told everyone I would be take it easy during the NYCM. I starting training again (18 miles, Ragnar Relay Ultra, 20 miles, Half Marathon PR). I tapered. Hurricane Sandy ruined lives. NYC Marathon was canceled. I didn’t care. I ran the Richmond Marathon.

Ashley version: I found out the NYC Marathon was canceled while I was at the expo (after volunteering all day). I left with Beth, drank about 10 margaritas and signed up for the Richmond Marathon.

This marathon involved a road trip, with an unreal amount of traffic. Note: if you are running a marathon, do not drive 8+ hours the day before. When we finally got to Richmond (Laura, Jess, Christy, Fiona and I) we went to the expo to grab our packets.

Next up, Katherine’s house. She went out of her way to make us all feel welcome and host a pre-race dinner! We talked about the course and laughed a lot! It was amazing and I am very appreciative. After dinner, we drove to Katie’s parents house in Richmond and bombarded the basement when Leticia, Christine and Katie were already sleeping. It was getting late and I figured a great way to get to know Katie’s mom was to clog the toilet (just pee, I swear). Next was plunging, cursing, temporary tattoo application, shirt decoration, pass out, wake up, eat peanut butter, drink coffee, forget things I need for the race, get puffy paint all over everyone’s race outfit because it didn’t dry, take pictures, dance to Gangnam Style, start race.

I think I need a bigger pair of shorts, or a smaller ass.

I ran the first 17 miles with Katie and Christy (Fiona took off around Mile 3). It was a comfortable pace. We chatted, we met other NYCM runners and Richmond runners, we laughed, we passed the 4 hour pace group and swore they wouldn’t pass us for the rest of the race, we cursed at the unexpected nowhere near flat course, we saw Bart Yasso cheering on the sidelines. I thought about all of the destruction near my hometown. I dedicated each mile to a town on the Jersey Shore. I wanted to be strong for my hometown. Those miles went by so fast I am pretty sure I blacked out.

I picked up the pace a bit around 17.5 (I think). I waved a quick goodbye to the ladies, turned my music up and continued at a pace that felt comfortable.

Then Mile 22 happened. I was alone. I hate running alone because I am my own worst enemy. I did a full body check. How was my breathing? Good. How did my legs feel? Relatively ok, good enough to keep running for sure. Then I hit a water stop, and STOPPED. I walked (even though I told myself that I didn’t need to). I knew it would be hard to keep going afterwards but I couldn’t stop myself. For the next 3 miles, it was the same story. Run, curse, talk down to myself, tell myself I should stop, tell myself I will never be able to finish. I even drank beer some college kids were offering. That is a first. I figured anything would make me feel better than I had at that moment.

Once I passed the mile marker for Mile 25, I told myself to suck it up. I am going to finish and finish strong. I ran the last 1.2 miles for Point Pleasant. I thought about my childhood memories and about how grateful I am. I pushed forward. The last half mile or so was a very welcomed downhill. The last hundred feet or so was a serious freaking decline and I was LUCKY that I did not faceplant or somersault down it and over the finish line.

Thank you Dori for capturing me on my feet!

I finished.

Garmin stats: 

Official Stats: 3:57:40. PR by 1 minute and 1 second.

I hung out at finish line and got yelled at for not moving but stayed and waited for Christy, who dominated the race and PR’d by over 2 minutes! We walked through the finisher’s chute to get our medals.

5 seconds later, the medal man took away our medals because our bibs had a blue X and our medals we be mailed to us. I threatened to run away with it but he said he could catch me since I just ran a marathon and all. He was right, I gave it back.

The finish area was great. Bagels, massages, smoothies and beer. I got my first post-race massage from a wonderful woman who kneaded out the legitimate knots in my thighs. I’m sure by the way I was talking to her she thought I was trying to pick her up. We got together with all of #TeamRichmond for a serious photoshoot.

Seeing this flag throughout the course was so wonderful.

Jess in front, Laura, Christy, Meggie, Gia and I

PR City

Meggie and I tatted up

All pics courtesy of Katherine.

Crossed the half at the same time 🙂

Photo courtesy of Dori

After we gathered our crew (hours later) we met the #runchat men and laughed (and cried a little, I think) over the whole NYCM to Richmond experience.

Then I ate and drank (until…still doing it).

Exciting things: there were a lot of PRs, there was a first marathon, there was a BQ. Most importantly, there was friendship. We went through the last few weeks together and I appreciate these ladies more than I could say. I also appreciate Richmond. They accepted us and welcomed us and the course was beautiful and challenging. It was an amazing experience.

Shitty things: I can’t help but think I could have done better. I walked when I did not have to and did not put the effort into the race (at the end) that I know I could have.

A PR is a PR and I am happy. In line with most marathoners, I am craving more. Will I do another race sooner rather than later? I am still unsure. We shall see.

Want some more #TeamRichmond race recaps?

JessMeggie, Leticia, Christy, Fiona