I got a little after 3:00 this morning after a restless night. Must have been too keyed up about the marathon. As planned I ate a banana and part of a Clif Bar for breakfast, got ready and did my stretches. Dennis, Kay’s brother, came a little before 4:00 to drive us to Honolulu. He spent all morning with Kay driving to various spots where both took photos of my run.
The marathon started on time at 5:00 with fireworks over the Honolulu harbor. I ran the course pretty much as planned, sticking to a 11 to 12 minute mile pace at first and downing six gel packs, one for every 4 miles. Although I skipped the first water station, I walked through and hydrated myself at every one after that. The stations offered cups of Gatorade and ice water, and wet sponges. Some even had ice cubes available from large plastic bags. The water stations were well spaced, just a few for the first half of the course and then much more the second half about a mile and a half to two miles apart. After a few stations, I got the hang of it first picking up a cup of Gatorade, then some water, ditching the Gatorade cup and picking up a sponge to cool off.
I sort of hit the “wall” again around the 19 to 20 mile mark. My left leg just did not want to move. I think it was my knee. Having experienced a similar “wall” encounter before, I nursed the rest of the run and finished by walking and jogging slowly.
I’m now the proud owner of a “fire engine” yellow T-shirt which I can use running early in the mornings. They’ll see me coming from a mile away.
We all received finisher medallions which I plan to use as a Christmas tree ornament.
Some final questions: Did I have fun today? Yes, although my legs are still sore from being on the road for 5 hours and 41+ minutes. Will I be doing this next year again? It depends if I can convince my “Run Day” logistics support to get up early again.
I just wanted to let you all know that during the run I often thought about all the best wishes I had received. They kept me motivated and focused throughout my marathon run. Kay asked if there was ever a time I felt I could not make it. Told her not really. With all the training I had done, I was confident I could finish. I had a lot of folks supporting me too, and there was no way I could not finish what I had started over four months ago.
This will be my last post. I have enjoyed having you all be part of my marathon experience and appreciated your kind words of support. Thank you all and have a wonderful holiday.