Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Illinois Marathon - Champaign, Illinois- Saturday April 30, 2016

The night before the race I traveled to Illinois to pick up my packet and stay in a hotel near the race site.   I ended up sharing my hotel with a girl named Jennifer that I met on the Corridor Running Facebook page.  At packet pickup I ran into one of my 50 state friends, George Southgate from Georgia.  He is 69 years old and was about to run his 289th marathon the next day.  He, with his wife took me to dinner at Bob Evans.  That was so nice of him.

After dinner I went back to the hotel and laid out all my stuff for the marathon.  About two hours later I met Jennifer and then shortly went to sleep.

The next morning the weather was as bad as it said it was going to be.  It was one of those weather days that you just don't want to run in. It was raining and raining hard. It was cold and just miserable. I woke up and every joint hurt. It's like my arthritis said, "No running today". I really didn't want to run. It took everything in me to get ready to go run a marathon again. I was not happy.  But since I signed up, I did it.

I arrived at the race site about an hour early and received excellent parking.  I found a bathroom, used it then went back to my car to just sit and wait.  The rain wouldn't stop.  I knew from the forecast that I would be running in rain the entire time and that was not going to be fun.  I just hoped that I layered correctly so I wouldn't be too hot or too cold.  I wore a hat so the raindrops wouldn't consistently be in my eyes.  I had my usual sports bra and sports bra tank on for the first layer, then a long sleeve shirt, then a rain coat.  I wore all of this until mile 20 and then felt like I had finally become too hot and took the rain coat off and wrapped it around me.

I really don't remember much about this race because I was so miserable being so wet.  I remember hearing everyone's wet shoes squeaking a lot, but other than that I just remember running and hoping I would get through it without chafing badly.

At mile 24 I rubbed my eye for some reason and when I did that my contact went up into my eyelid, way up.  So far up it hurt so bad.  I went over to the side of the road and tried to push on my eyelid to make the contact come down over the eyeball where it belonged so I could see correctly.  It wouldn't.  So I made the choice to run in severe pain.  I ran half blind.  It wasn't fun.  I had to finish the race by being able not to see.  Oh well, I finished and that was nice. I barely made it under 5 hours.  Below are pictures to enjoy.  Here are the race results if you really care that much:  Results

George and I in our 50 State Marathon shirts.
Waiting for the marathon to begin.  I was already wet and wanting to just start running.

Me with my medal at the end.  

The Garmin results!

The race bib and medal.

After a shower and stretching with my new race shirt on.

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