I could not sleep the whole night before.... Just laid in bed with my eyes closed till 3:40 am. I had called the front desk of the hotel and asked for a wake-up call, but I knew I wouldn't need it. Got dressed, had a teeny bowl of cereal, and went down to the lobby. In the lobby were over 200 hyped up marathon runners... We took a bus to the Port of Miami (American Airlines Arena)... where we stood in 91% humidity waiting for the race to start with 18,000 other people. There were photographers and news cameras. There were beach balls being tossed around over our heads. They announced all the charity teams (us- yay!) and welcomed us all. This started at 5:15, and just before 6:15, which would be the start time, they had fireworks, and steam blowers and confetti... It was really festive! Really exciting!
I'm not sure that you all remember but I was kinda stressed about wearing spandex and what I'd look like in it. Well, my shirt was so big that I did not even have to worry about it. Between being 5 feet tall and getting a size too big, it basically looked like a mini dress. Oh well. At least I didn't have to worry about people staring at my butt the whole time... Cuz trust me I was looking at everyone else's. I mean, when you are running for hours what else are you supposed to do? There were all types of bodies running.... pears, apples, stringbeans, Kim Kardashians... I was wondering how one girl fit all that booty into her spandex. Then there were those hard bodies that made you want to run faster in hopes of looking like them!
It was so humid, that even at mile 2, when it was still dark, everyone was totally drenched. Kinda gross huh? At around mile 4 or 5 we must have been in south beach. On the sidewalk I saw the back of a tall, thin woman with long black hair, and thigh high black fringed boots, and little tiny black booty shorts. She was about to turn around, I was totally expecting to see a topless woman with big giant boobs, but when she turned around, she was a HE. And I couldn't stop laughing, which I think was the point. It was hilarious. There were so many people on the sidelines cheering us on... it was really awesome!
I felt really good the whole way. Mile 12 and 13 each felt like 2 miles, but with all the people holding out cups of water for us, I made it through. I cannot stop running, because my muscles tighten up, so I would grab 2 cups while running drink a little and let the rest pour down my shirt. It kept me cool and totally worked for me.
What I didn't expect at the very end, was how emotional I would be. When you reach mile 12 and you know you are almost done, it is so overwhelming you want to cry, you don't, but you feel like you want to. When I saw 2 kids and their dad with a poster that said "We love you MOM! You can do it!" My chest kinda tightened, I felt overwhelmed with a sadness knowing my family wasn't there waiting for me. But I saw my friend's kids and my other friend's husband, and waved to them! I waved to anyone in a Team Lifeline shirt, because there is just some sort of special camaraderie you have with other marathon runners suddenly.
But it was also such a happy and proud and overwhelming feeling too... knowing that I was at the end, that I did it, that it wasn't as hard as I thought it would be. That I actually felt amazing! I felt like I could really do anything I wanted to do in life!
Well except continue to run... cuz after I crossed that finish line I wanted to sit.
My time was 2 hours and 32 minutes. I was really happy with it. I had wanted 2 1/2 hours but got sick at the hotel (my throat had been hurting and I lost my voice) and wasn't sure I could pull it off.
When I crossed the finish line a woman put a medal around my neck and told me to go get a drink. I drank 1 1/2 water bottles and poured the rest over my head. I sat on the curb and stretched my legs for a little hoping to see my friends. I didn't, so I started walking to the Team Lifeline tent. People were sitting around eating bagels and muffins and granola bars and I just felt nauseous watching them. I totally cannot eat after I run. Not for a few hours. I was really hot and looked around for something cold, but there was nothing. I felt like I needed something so I drank the juice of a fruit cup and sat on the grass till I felt better. Finally I found the Team Lifeline tent and made my way over. I told the guy in charge that I wanted to go back to the hotel and needed to know where the shuttle bus was. He told me it was 5 blocks in the direction I had just come from!!! Oh man. I was tired and needed to cool off, but there really was nowhere to do that. I am used to running in the freezing cold, cooling off immediately and sitting on my couch with ice afterward. I started to walk away, but suddenly did not feel well at all. It had been a half hour since I finished and all I wanted to do was lay down somewhere. I decided to walk back to my group because I didn't feel great, and as I did the world started turning white, which as a fainter (happens a lot to me, especially when I'm pregnant, very hot, or low in sugar), I know means I only have a few seconds. So I laid down on the grass and told a random stranger that I might faint.
I guess that guy told the other person in charge who came over and asked me if I was ok. I said that I wasn't and that I needed him to pour water on my face and head. He did, a little apprehensively, and I started to come back. It was totally embarrassing, but I did start to feel better after a few minutes. He called the medic over and they took my blood pressure and my blood sugar level, told me to eat, to which I answered I couldn't. And when I sat up and saw a stretcher... I told them that I was totally fine, that this has happened to me lots of times, that I know how to take care of it, and that there was no way in hell I was getting on that thing.
Then my friend Orah came over and took care of me. They finally got me some ice which she held on the back of my neck for me till I felt better. I felt totally fine, and truthfully I hate having to be taken care of, but I appreciated it from a friend perspective. Thanks Orah! Then we walked to the shuttle bus together. A few minutes later I felt on top of the world. I got my bag from bag check, called Jon who had actually texted me my time, he had been checking on the internet! It was sooo good to talk to him. I was so happy to share this awesome feeling with my husband and family! Then I called my Dad, who has never been so proud of me in my whole life!!!! He was so proud, and so excited! I never heard him sound like that! It felt great!
Anyway, here are the pics that I have. They were taken after the near-fainting episode, so I am totally disgusting in them. But I don't care. I'm really proud of myself, no matter what I looked like... If anyone wants to share a picture of themselves after they don't sleep, get out of bed in the middle of the night, run 13.1 miles, almost faint, and have 2 bottles of water poured on their head... I would be happy to post em!