Tough race, Tough love…

I really wanted to start each post with a song lyric, but I swear every song I think of is some kind of love song… do I not listen to anything else?

Regardless, the ING Miami Marathon was a tough race, but an overall great trip. We made it in the nick of time to the expo on Saturday where I was super excited to see my name on the wall! I was also super excited to see how great my bib looked! From there we met up with some of my teammates for our pasta dinner and early night back to the hotel.

The Metromover in Miami is amazing! We stayed about a mile from the start line and with the Metromover running every five minutes starting at 4:30am, I was able to leave around 4:45 from the hotel and make it over to the start to meet up with my team by 5:15. With most of us together, we got some quick photos in and all hurried into our corrals. The temperatures at this point before the sun was already in the mid-70s. I felt the humidity in the air and for the first half, I felt like my head was burning up. Here are some thoughts that went through my mind that day…

  • Mile 1 – “Why are people walking already? Seriously, if you’re going to walk, get to the side. I shouldn’t have to dodge people in mile 1. And stop standing in the middle of the road taking pictures.”
  • Mile 2 – “Geez, this causeway is really long. When are we getting over to South Beach?”
  • Mile 5 – “South Beach is really not as pretty running through it as it is when I walk around in my bathing suit.”
  • Mile 8 – “Why are all these mini bridges unpaved? I’m going to get my foot stuck on these rungs and then I’m going to sue!”
  • Downhills – “Why is there is a sign that says, ‘This downhill is brought to you by ING?’ Didn’t ING bring me the uphill before this as well?”
  • Water stations – “Why is the water warm? Why won’t you hand me the water instead of making me fight my way towards the table? These are precious seconds.” (Yes, this was me thinking I’m an “elite” runner where I may actually lose a race over seconds.)
  • Mile 13 – “The split off is not clearly labeled. I almost ran through the half marathon finish, but I guess that wouldn’t have been that bad, huh? I hate you, half-marathoners, I wish I could be done now too.”
  • Mile 14 – “Peace and quiet. No more runners, no more crowds, and no more music. How am I going to make it another 12 miles?”
  • Mile 14.5 – “If I don’t see Josh here, I’m going to kill him (like that time he missed me at the halfway mark in Philadelphia). Phew, I see him, but I don’t want to acknowledge him. It’s too hot and I’m too tired.”
  • Mile 17 – “Coconut Grove is really quiet. Man, this sucks. Where are the people?”
  • Mile 18 – “Everyone around me is walking. Coach Brian said to me before the race to relax for this because I have nothing to prove since I already ran my first marathon. Well, I’m going to walk. I don’t think walking is what he meant, but I’m too hot and I don’t care.”
  • Mile 18.2 – “Walking is dumb. I’m running again. I can do it, right? Only another eight miles.”
  • Mile 19 – “Nah, let’s walk a little more. Glad I did because I met a Chinese woman who is here from Baltimore. It’s too bad I didn’t get her name or bib number, but this is my first conversation with another human in over three hours!”
  • Mile 20 – “Okay, this view of Biscayne Bay is much better than Coconut Grove homes.”
  • Mile 20.5 – “A little push. This volunteer at the water station was like yeah, ‘@cindyruns, I’m going to follow you on Twitter. You better follow me back!’ Okay, buddy, I don’t even know who you are!”
  • Mile 22 – “Really? Why are we running part of the way towards a bridge and then turning around? Did the course creators realize that they were two miles short so they needed to add this? This is such an after thought”
  • Mile 22.5 – “How do I figure out how to look at elapsed time on my watch? This is why Josh wanted me to practice swapping between views on my runs. Ugh, okay, got it. Haha, can’t PR on this race anymore. Might as well walk a little more.”
  • Mile 23 – “This causeway is really hot. I need water and oh apparently, I get a side of cheerleaders in your face too! They are really too close to me. But there’s only a 5K left, that’s easy.”
  • Mile 24 – “No, a 5K is not easy after running for over four hours already. Finally, land, okay, Brickell Avenue, I can handle this. Two more miles.”
  • Mile 25 – “Our hotel. I should just go into the air conditioning. And oh, the pool, that would be nice. Oh wait, that’s Josh! Why is he here? He said he would be waiting for me at the finish. Man, now, I really need to look like I’m trying for the camera.”
  • Mile 25.1 – “I need to remember to tell Josh later that I never want him to run a marathon. No one should ever put their body through this. This is the worst. Why do I do this to myself? <looking up at the sky> Right, thank you Nin-nin (grandma), you helped me realize how much I loved running… but this is the reason Chinese people don’t like their children to do physical activities.”
  • Mile 25.8 – “Uphill, really? Okay, not a real uphill like Queensboro Bridge, but any elevation change at this point is not welcome.”
  • Mile 26 – “But for every uphill is a downhill brought to you by ING. I hate you ING.”
  • Mile 26.2 – “I finish. Man, I really I hope I finished in under 4:40… crap, I cut it really close.”
  • FINISH – “Where’s my double spinning medal? Crap, my watch thinks I ran it in 4:40:07. Ugh. What’s the official time? How do I figure that out? Oh, I have a QR code on my bib. Crap, how do I scan that thing again? <Fumbles for phone> Okay, I need Google. Got it, scan, man, they’re better at this than Philadelphia was. Crap, 4:40:08. Shoot, I easily wasted a lot of nine seconds throughout the course.”
BIG disappointment is how I felt when I finished. I knew I mentally I broke down, but how could I let myself do that? I ran faster in Philadelphia with injury. I mean I know it was a lot hotter than the 16 degree weather we were training in and I know that I just ran two marathons in the course of two months and with my injury, I trained for less than a month for this race. I know, no excuses. But really, I can run 26.2 miles straight, no walking, why did I give in? Running is 90% mental and 10% physical.
However, I felt much better as soon as I saw my teammate, Julio and then Josh made his over to the finish. Over iMessage, my mother-in-law said to me that she knew I’d be disappointed and somehow that made me feel better too. Then I talked to my mom, and she’s like, “Why are you done so soon?” Oh mom, clearly you’re weren’t tracking me as closely as you said you would! 
Regardless, the next couple of hours after the marathon were actually pretty amazing. I was able to walk, a big difference from Philadelphia. The weather was warm and we were able to stay outside and watch the rest of the team finish. The next day was even better, most of the team spent it on the beach and over “refreshing” drinks in South Beach reminiscing about the brutal, flat, scenic course and our training to get to this point. What a team, I have truly have the best team ever!
Days later, we’re back in the cold and I am swapping emails with my teammate (who shall remain nameless here, but she knows who she is!) and she’s like, “I’m thinking about signing up for Providence full.” Too bad she couldn’t see me, because my jaw dropped! She’s the one who originally said one marathon was enough. So we swap some more messages, and we both agree that maybe our bodies have had enough but our brains still want more. I sign up for a couple more shorter NYRR races – you know a 5K and 4-miler are short… a year ago, if you told me I’d think like that I’d tell you, you were crazy.
Brain still not fulfilled. I am swapping messages with another teammate and I’m sharing my thoughts on this with him. Of course, he’s like let’s sign up for Jersey Shore half-marathon and I’m like, ugh, no, I’m already running two half marathons in March and April. The half is not as much fun and waiting until November to run a full seems so far away. (Someone please remind me how I felt starting at mile 13 on this race.) He’s like, yeah, let’s definitely run the full in May… haha, okay, compulsive me didn’t sign up for the race yet. I promised I’d think about it but I don’t handle peer pressure very well. Tough love, huh? I drag my brain and body through months of training, a disappointing race, and I want to run another one? Clearly, this is the thought process of an addicted and insane runner!

One thought on “Tough race, Tough love…

  1. Pingback: As seen in Florida... - cindyruns

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *