Sunday, March 9, 2014

Princess Half Marathon 2014

Going in to the half marathon on Sunday morning, I knew something was wrong.  As I was walking to the bus, my right pinky toe felt like it was overlapping the toe next to it, and every step hurt.  I left it alone until I got in to Race Retreat, untied my shoe and loosened it as much as possible, then put my foot in and made sure all of my toes were flat.  Laced my shoe back up, and it still hurt just as much.  Damn.

I got my picture with the Alice crew, which I was super excited about.  Then was a stop at the restrooms, and I went outside to meet Rachel who introduced me to Karen and April.  I read both of their blogs (which you should check out) and it was exciting to meet them!  Rachel and I then went in search of her friend, who we didn't end up finding, but we did find this guy with a sign that said "I'm your Prince Charming"! It was so cute.  We took pictures, but I can't find them right now to post.  After that, we headed out to the corrals.  It is seriously a long walk, and I was just trying to ignore my toe hurting the whole time.  It was then I also realized how much my feet hurt, from doing the 10k and the park the day before.

Once I was finally completely locked in to my corral (M), I realized I had to go to the bathroom, but there was really no way out at that point in time.  I ended up stopping just before (or just after) the first mile, and waited in line about 7 minutes.  That put me way behind pace already.  I knew I wouldn't be able to stop for any pictures, but I knew that already.  I got to the 5k mark and really never got into a groove and never felt good about the race at all.

At this point, I was just upset and angry and every bad emotion.  This was supposed to be my race.  Princess Half Marathon is what first inspired me to run.  This was supposed to be the culmination of all my hard work, my destined race.  And it was just all falling apart, getting worse with every step.  Around mile 5, I texted Ray (who was waiting in the Magic Kingdom) that I was just going to walk the rest, and if I got swept then it was whatever.  By the time I got through the castle, I decided I was just going to turn myself in to the next medical station.  At the pace I was going, I knew I'd get swept eventually, and there was no point in putting myself through more pain.  I was crying, in a really bad place, and just wanted to be done.

I stopped in front of the castle and Ray took a picture of me trying to keep it together, and I finally got to a med tent.  I stopped my Garmin at 6.44 miles, but I'm not sure how much it was off from weaving and everything.  I got put on the "parade bus" and waited until everyone else was done.  We were the sweepers, and stopped to pick people up along the way.  There were a few tears, but most people had good attitudes.  Some people had injuries and knew they wouldn't make it the whole way, some didn't have a goal to finish, just to get as far as they could, etc.   I wasn't happy, but I wasn't crying anymore, and these other women were helping to lift my spirits.

To summarize my experience, this is what I put on Facebook:

While I'm still, of course, a princess (and have an amazing Prince Charming) and got a medal, I did not finish my half marathon today. My feet just had too much around mile 6.5 and I couldn't make myself go anymore. But in the past few days I've had an amazing time with Ray, who continues to be a wonderful motivator even when things like this happen, watched him experience Disney for the first time, ran a great 10k, gone 25.25 miles in two days according to my FitBit, seen and met great friends, and had a wonderful time. I'm disappointed that I didn't finish but I've decided it's ok and I have another half to try again next month.

So, we'll see how RunTheBluegrass goes at the end of the month.  I'll include the few pictures I have from Sunday in my picture dump post, along with pictures from Epcot Saturday afternoon.

Have you ever had a DNF?  This was my first.

Lauren

18 comments:

  1. Oh Lauren, I had no idea! I'm so sorry, I know that had to be so disappointing. I'm SO SO SO glad you had Ray there to support you and continue on with your trip! I've never had a DNF, but I haven't run that very many races and it's a fear. I think it sounds like you found a way to make peace with it, which is all we can do. DNF is far far far better than did not start. I know you know this and it sounds cliche, but it's so true and we can only do what our bodies will allow! ((((hugs)))

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    1. Thank you Karen! I really appreciate it. I have come to peace with it - I know that I just physically did too much and my body said stop, so I had to!

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  2. as for the toe overlapping thing, what are you wearing for socks? i had this happen to me a lot when i was wearing standard running socks like balegas and thorlo. that said, i would get this awful blister on my baby toe, and it was always super painful. i switched to injinis and have never looked back. in fact, i have replaced all of my socks with them, and wear them all the time. that with a little runguard on the toesies before i put the socks on, no more painful overlap or blistering.

    i'm sorry you took a DNF. i dread the day i take my first one... but there is something to be said for using it as a learning experience though. you will be stronger because of it, i am sure.

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    1. I wear Feetures, always have. I don't think it was actually overlapping, I think my pinky toe actually had/has a stress fracture. If the problems do start up again though, I'll definitely look into Injinis!

      I definitely did need to use this as a learning experience - don't do anything you don't have to the day or two before a half!

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  3. I'm so sorry you had this experience! But it sounds like you handled as well as anyone could possibly ask. How is your foot? Did you find out what was wrong with your toe? You are indeed a Princess - you handled this situation with grace and dignity!

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    1. I'm like 99% sure I had/have? a stress fracture in my pinky toe. I've broken both before, and it feels basically the same as when that happened. For the most part, it doesn't hurt, unless I wear certain shoes or step funny, so I'd like to believe it's mostly healed!

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  4. It was great to meet you! I'm so very sorry you had a DNF, but I'm glad you had great support and that you've come to terms with it. I know it can happen to anyone (it almost happened to me at Tink!). You have to listen to your body, no race is worth risking injury or illness! And just starting is more than millions of people ever do! Hope to see you again at Space Coast!

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    1. That's what Ray always tells me, this time, when I come in last, etc. He always says "Think of all the people that would never even try this" and it makes me feel better. And yes! I'm so looking forward to Space Coast!

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  5. I'm so sorry, Lauren. :0( I know that must have been the hardest decision to make to decide to stop yourself, and I am glad you had Ray there to support you. It sounds like you made the best decision for your health, though, and I truly hope you can go back next year and run the race of your dreams! You deserve it. You are a winner in my book no matter what! Best of luck at your half next month, and I will see you at the Nike Women's Half in April!

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    1. It was really difficult, but I knew it had to be done. And thank you so much for the winner comment, it really means a lot! I can't wait until Nike!

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  6. <3 I am so sorry for you because you worked so hard! I am happy that you have come to terms with it, for the most part, and so thankful that you have Ray to keep your spirits up! Can't wait to see how you do at the end of the month! You're gonna rock it!!!

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    1. Thank you! He is pretty great =)

      I'm super excited for the end of the month and I'll be certain to let you know how it goes!

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  7. Whoo I'm running the RunTheBluegrass this month as well!! So excited!! Also I have technically had a DNF, during Ragnar I switched out with a teammate in my last leg after I tweaked my knee...Not gonna lie there were tears involved and not from the knee pain but the frustration from "quitting." Gotta listen to your body though.

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    1. I'm super excited about RunTheBluegrass!!!! And I'm impressed - Ragnar is tough!

      That's exactly what I was feeling though. While I normally probably would have cried from pain in that situation, it was coming purely from frustration with myself, but I'm glad I listened to my body!

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  8. I'm so sorry about your DNF but listening to your body was the right thing to do. Good luck on your next race.

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    1. Thank you, I really appreciate it!

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  9. So sorry about your DNF...you were so smart to do what you needed to. What a total bummer, but I am so glad you shared. Hoping your toe is feeling a little better and you rock your race the end of the month. There is so much that goes into preparing for a half, be proud of yourself.

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    1. I appreciate the positive words =) It's really great to hear reassurance from so many bloggers I look up to!

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