Sunday, February 10, 2013

Yes, I really did walk a half marathon!

And I'd like to tell you about it :)

Warning:  this entry is long, picture-heavy, and may not be in complete sentences.
about to begin our epic adventure

So ... where to begin?

It was hard.
but not impossible.
Cheering Gramma and the Boyz

We set (and kept) such a good pace that my poor brother-in-law who had planned out all the cheering spots on the route, based on me telling him I did 15-minute miles ... totally missed us (but they were all there yelling at the end!).  I felt horrible that he'd worked so hard to get my mom and 3 squirrelly little boys to those spots on the map and then he felt bad for not meeting us and then Sharon made a good point:  if we were missing our cheerleaders because we were walking at such a fantastic pace, that was a pretty awesome thing.  Also, at least one of the boys thought one of us would win and/or break a record.  Love that.

There was a point at which I thought, "am I going to have to stop?"
and shortly after that I thought, "I'm just going to have to tell Sharon to go on ahead and I'll just finish it much more slowly."
I got a little bit choked up when I realized we were on the final incline into the stadium.
...and shortly after that we were done!

Yes, I'd do it again.
Although maybe not in cold, wet Seattle (but there's something to be said for sea-level).
    obligatory fog shot
And in case I didn't make it clear in my "night before the marathon" post, let me be clear:  although my legs will never be shorter, losing all this weight has made a HUGE difference in how I feel about flying.  Seriously.  While not actually "comfortable", my flights to/from Seattle and again at Christmas to/from Vermont were totally new experiences for me.  Flying 50+ pounds lighter is just plain nothing like it was when I was heavy(ier).  Fitting into the seat and not spending the entire flight pushing down the armrest that my fat is pushing up makes the whole flight so pleasant!  And although I never used a seat belt extender, I'm pretty sure I was on the way to needing one.  Thankfully I will never experience that and even though my hips are still pretty wide, they now fit in the standard coach seat just fine, thankyouverymuch.  Amazing. 

Love this pic of my sis and her oldest
There's a picture at my sister's house I've always liked.  It's from when we lived in Turkey, and for some reason my sister (age 5?  6? no older) went jogging with my dad, who was the Chief of Police on base.  The pic was taken by an "official" photographer and I think ended up in the base newspaper or something.  When I saw this one of my sister her and her (oldest son) manchild, I got choked up because it reminded me of that other picture. I love their smiles here, I love that even though she told him to go on ahead without her he stayed with her, and I love the man he's becoming!

And here is my fabulous oldest niece.  Her foot hurt, and she had to slow down, but you'd never know it from this pic.  This is the happy, sunny girl I have known since ... hmmm ... since she was 4 months old at our wedding.  I love this beautiful, smart, funny, thoughtful girl so much!  I'm so, so glad she did this race with us!

And here we are, about to cross the finish line.  I realized later that all the stuff I had in my vest pockets made me look pregnant, but oh well. Those kinds of things don't actually bother me as much anymore.  Funny, that.  Also?  In all the official pictures of the race, my mouth is open.  I may or may not have talked Sharon's ear off.  Whoops.

Here is the whole squad at the end.  I  seriously love this shot. We did it!  We all did it! (sis is wearing a warming blanket -- that question has come up a lot)  See our medals?  They are surprisingly substantial-feeling.  And I wished I'd worn mine on the flight home.  Oh well.  Now I know.

And here are some of our cheerleaders and two of the runners, warming up ... in the warming room.  I have very cute nieces and nephews, no?

If you are considering walking or running a half marathon, I can recommend a great post-marathon routine:
  • Go to the evening service at church.
  • Try to stay awake.  It's HARD.  I'm not gonna lie.
  • Have Chipotle for dinner (seriously, a burrito as big as your head is a GREAT way to begin to fill the huge hole in your gut that won't be satisfied).
  • Followed by chocolate chip cookie dough.
  • And a pedicure the next day.
    chocolate chip cookie dough: post marathon win

Or a lemon-basil martini the next.  I recommend all of the above :)


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