This past weekend I ran another full marathon. I know, I know... I said I would never do another full. But a friend of mine from the last one was coming to run the Utah Valley Marathon and I "got the bug" when I saw that and signed up! I ran about the first 3 miles with her, then had to use the port-a-pot [of course, the first set which always has the LONGEST lines!] and ended up chasing her the rest of the 26.2 miles... finishing just 4 minutes after her. I went easy on myself with this race too- easier than I should have. It started in Provo Canyon and had a lot of gently rolling hills with some mad head wind- so I pretty much just speed walked the uphills when I probably could have run at least some of them.
About 4 miles from the finish, I was listening to my music [something I only do on marathons apparently... it gets to long & tiring that I need a beat to stick to!] and walking, of course, when a man in his 50s or 60s asked me where the finish line was. Which I thought was strange, because I figured anyone running a marathon would pay special attention to know where the torture session ended! After talking for a few minutes [and turning my music off], I learned that he had run this exact marathon a few years ago and the course was different- hence the confusion about the finish line! He was wearing a 50 states club shirt- which means he has run a marathon in all 50 states. He's actually working on his 2nd round of running in each state [something only 100 or so people have done!] He had some interesting stories, and I was too nice to blow him off saying I really needed to try and shave an extra 10 minutes off my time by running faster, so I jogged at his easy pace the rest of the 4 miles.
But when all was said and done, I ended up being 21 minutes faster than last year, I didn't have a major sciatica attack, and other than a couple spots of soreness I actually felt fine! We even walked around the booths at the Orem Summerfest Fair afterward! We would have stayed for the evening parade and fireworks, but it was too cold & windy so we went home. But it was a great day, with a great race [just a little more hills than I would have liked!], with great company, and my great family waiting for me at the finish! I'll probably do another full marathon, but not for a few years when my kids are both in school and it's easier to find time to train.
Serra also ran a kids race- well, by "ran" I mean walked... she gets so excited, but when the actual events start she kind of freezes and freaks out. It was also blazing hot at the finish area and she was begging Daddy to get out of the sun instead of running. But she did technically complete her 1k race!