I am going to fucking KILL IT at the marathon in 2 weeks. (yes, there it is, the whole word. I am too serious to put dashes or asterisks.)
Let me explain why, but the above statement is not what I am talking about when I say brief.
Becky and I had our last long run yesterday morning, we went 24 milesssssss. Some people might think that is overkill for a marathon, but it is what my confidence needed after my showing last year. At this same marathon last year, by mile 21- which I know is where everyone usually hits their wall, I was dead. My pace was that of a snail, I could barely run for more than a few steps at a time, and the road seemed endless. So this time around, I wanted to taste the fear before the race, so I knew exactly how to dig down and get through it.
I felt amazing during the run, and ran it similar to how I want to run the race. I ran negative splits for the second half. Advice I had been given before, but some lessons you have to learn on your own. Instead of charging out and sticking to goal pace from the beginning, I am going to settle into it, get comfortable, and get stronger as the race goes on. And during this run, that is exactly what I did.
One of the greatest things about running a race with my girls is that we get to pick out a new outfit for each race. We are HUGE fans of Running Skirts, they are comfortable, have a lot of pocket room, and we look adorable in them! Right?
So Kim, Becky and I (missing our Amy) headed down for a trip to the Running Skirt Store, to pick out our new digs and have a yummy pasta dinner. We were hoping to find something on sale, that they had in all of our sizes, and preferably one that would match the black tank tops we already have. As the manager brought out the sale skirts, the other girls got so excited that they found the perfect skirt, in all 3 of their sizes. Well, low and behold the same skirt was in a pile I had with me in the dressing room. I normally wear a size 1 (these are their sizes, not true to a real size 1 of course) in the athletic skirt-that has shorts built in underneath. But this skirt was the real running skirt...briefs underneath. I went to pull it on...and man I had to PULL! It was waaaaaay too snug. No problem, just get me a size 2. Oh wait, you don't have another size 2? Super. They did have a size 2 in the athletic skirt, but it was too big. And that is one problem you don't want to have with a running skirt when you have 26.2 miles ahead of you.
So, being the AMAZING friend that I am, I took the size 1, itsy bitsy, teeny weeny, running skirt with brief bikini. Now we all match, and I look mildly inappropriate.
Well, I have to tell you, after running in our game-day-uni yesterday...I am now a believer in the brief! I was so comfortable, and it was nice to have the skirt fit snug. I didn't have to mess with it for the first 6 miles before it would stay tight on my hips. And, Becky assured me you couldn't see my thighs rubbing together from behind. Bless her heart I think she's lying but I am going to turn the other cheek and go with it! Haha get it...cheek.
I really hit my stride at mile 20 and was off for the final stretch of our run. I heard some cheering and looked up to notice 2 girls with skirts on cheering and jumping at the light. How funny, who on earth was running this way? As I got closer I noticed on the other side of the street there were more screaming people. And as my haze broke, there they were, some of our Moms on the Run running club members there to give us an extra boost! Now you all know what happens next, I of course start to cry. So sweet of them to coordinate to meet us...but then again, this is just who they are!
To our surprise they weren't only there to cheer us on. They parked at my house, ran the 3 miles to meet us, and were running the 3 miles back with us! Already pumped, I grabbed Karla and Vanessa and we started to book it. A few lights down, I looked at Vanessa, and told her she was responsible to bring me home. I was ready to push it and I needed her by my side.
I felt stronger with every stride, and it felt great to peek at my Garmin and see the pace number getting smaller and smaller. We rounded the corner to my neighborhood and I was determined. I dug deep, and Vanessa followed. We had to run past my house and loop back around to get the 24, but we did it...and it felt amazing.
Right as we stopped, there was the rest of the group charging down the street. We started yelling and screaming for Becky and her entourage as they raced home. She finished strong and fast, and the smile on her face told me everything. She was proud of herself, and thankful this run was OVER!!
Our friends waited on us hand and foot for the rest of the morning. Fetching us beer, watching my kids, filling up our ice bath, and feeding our egos. As always, it was wonderful to share in this moment with them.
Although the four of us (me, Becky, Amy, and Kim) will be alone on race day, away from our group, we know we have all their strength, love, and support. And that can get us through any wall we might encounter. So cheers to our Moms on the Run, words cannot describe how my cup runneth over.