Long Beach Marathon-THE RECAP


October 12, 2011 by Danielle

I found my camera! It was in my shoe. Whoops (sorry manfriend!)

So after much anticipation-a recap of my first marathon! Buckle in…it’s a longggg ride.

I was up and at ’em even before my 5 alarm clocks went off. I was ready to go!

In all honesty..I set 2 more additional alarms.

The morning started off at 5 AM with a tour of LA transportation…LA highways and a ride into Long Beach on the train to avoid traffic.

Manfriend is just about as excited as I am!

When we arrived at the marathon, I of course had to go to the bathroom immediately (I think it’s instinct at this point) and braved the INSANELY long port-a-potty lines.

I attempted to be speedy in all aspects of this marathon experience-especially this one.

At least there was a nice sunrise…

Yes these were the lines...cute beautiful sunrise distraction!

My wave’s go time was approaching, so I cued up my playlist and looked fast for the camera.

No idea what's about to happen to me.

Little did I know that an assigned wave time does not mean that you will actually start with your wave. My assigned wave started at 7:10, but I actually ended up hitting the line at 7:53. The start was PACKED (just imagine the port-a-potty image above at the starting line). Lesson learned.

Anyway, I didn’t take any pictures along the run because I had horrible visions of tripping with my iPhone-so I bring you my Garmin pace map!

The upside to the first 13.1 miles of the marathon course was that the scenery was beautiful-the course wove along the beach and by the Queen Mary 2-and I was feeling good. The downside was that the course was packed with walkers and runners and the path was narrow at times…meaning I did a lot of weaving. I think that’s why my Garmin says I ran 26.7 miles. Oh well.

The first 20 or so miles were pretty uneventful-the course really cleared up after the marathon split from the half marathoners…lucky you know whats. There were plenty of spectators along the course-the best part was going through the CSU Long Beach campus where students were lined up with high fives and lots of cheering. I even saw Monica around mile 16. My thoughts were “This is so fun! I’m going so fast! I love this!”

Then miles 21 through 25 happened.

I wouldn’t necessarily say that I hit “the wall”…it was more like I descended slowly into a painful running hell. My thoughts shifted away from my initial excitement to “Why am I doing this? Why is this guy running soooo close to me? Pain. Legs. Stupid sun. It’s so hot.”

In my defense it was really hot.

Despite this episode, I was determined to run the entire race. My music playlist (I’ll post the entire list later!) and the GREAT fans (can I call them that if I’m not an elite athlete?) along the way basically got me through the tough stuff.

When mile 25 hit I got into an EPIC battle with the woman next to me. She was taking the run-walk approach to the marathon and would run until she was just in front of me and then walk until I caught up with her. I’m sure she was not doing this on purpose and was just sticking to her plan, but I was not having it at that point and my competitive side came out. Little did I know my man friend captured this all on film. Great.

This woman has no clue about the mental battle going on behind her.

When I finally won the battle hit the 26 mile mark, I literally could have grabbed the stranger next to me and kissed them out of sheer joy (I kept running though).  My exhausted and irrational reasoning at that point was the faster I run, the faster I’ll finish…so I BOOKED it to the finish line.

When I arrived at the finish line, I immediately received my medal and of COURSE they make you take a picture. That was the last thing I wanted to do, but I took the picture anyway and the photographer told me my smile looked forced. Really lady? (I’ll be sure to post that photo later…you can judge for yourself).

After finding a shady spot, I laid down, called my mom and told her I was never doing a marathon again. I think I was in a mildly irrational state.

After a bit, my manfriend finally found me and it was time for the thank god I’m done with this glory shots. Behold.

I'll eat anything at this point. Even the medal I just won.

After the race I showered and we had to head back to San Francisco. Most of my time was spent asleep or attempting to find a comfortable position. My stomach was extremely upset after the marathon trauma, so I wasn’t able to really partake in a huge post marathon meal. 😦 . I did consume an insane amount of Diet Coke and sour Skittles, neither of which I consume on a regular basis, but the body wants what the body wants after the trauma of 26.2 miles. Thank the lord for the 7-Eleven Big Gulp.

A drink larger than my head (unnecessary...but oh so necessary)

Despite my initial reaction of never wanting to do a marathon again…I might contemplate another one. After all…I’m just 15 minutes away from breaking that 4 hour barrier…


8 thoughts on “Long Beach Marathon-THE RECAP

  1. […] Oct As you might have read in my marathon recap, some sick person thought it would be a good idea to throw me in front of a backdrop for a picture […]

  2. Gosh I can’t even imagine doing a full marathon! You’re so awesome for not walking! I also get that stomach upset thing…couldn’t really eat much until late afternoon after my half marathon.

  3. Naomi says:

    I’m a new reader and glad that I found your blog for such a momentous post! Congratulations on your first marathon!

  4. […] it was great running with a group again! After training pretty much all by my lonesome for the Long Beach Marathon, it reminded me that running is indeed […]

  5. […] Permanente half marathon which made me a bit nervous since I haven’t run more than 6 miles since October, but when race day morning arrived, the nervousness quickly disappeared.  The starting line was […]

  6. […] also got antsy to get running again-so instead I signed up for another marathon-d’oh! I see a PR in my […]

  7. […] Of course, one large problem stands in my way: I have not been the best at negative splitting in the past.  Although no catastrophic slowing occurs, I tend to get excited,  go out faster than planned and end up slowing down until the last few miles. Exhibit A. […]

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