Sunday, July 10, 2011

Spa Day at Spa Paradiso

After completing the Windermere Marathon, the Spokane Marathon Mamas decided to treat themselves to a well deserved Spa Day at Spa Paradiso located in the Davenport Hotel.

 After training for 16 weeks and running countless miles, our bodies and poor feet took a beating. So Ashley, Sarah, and Andrea enjoyed their massage, then Ashley and Andrea joined Mirna and Bethany for pedicures. Here are some highlights of our Spa Day.
Andrea enjoying the foot rub
Mirna enjoying the complimentary sparkling cider
Bethany and Ashley relaxing

Special thanks to Spa Paradiso who supported us via Facebook and provided excellent service for our Spa Day.

Final Product-beautiful toes!

Mirna's Marathon Experience

The Marathon That Almost BUSTED Me!

“Please don’t throw up, please don’t throw up…please just let me get through this”.
As Andrea stated, the day of the race already started warmer than any other long run we had trained for. I thought I had eaten and drank enough for 26.2 miles, and was ready to tackle the race! After taking a few pictures, a quick bathroom break, it was time for the race to begin…and we took off!
With adrenaline kicking in, we started running at a 9 min/mile pace ROOKIE MISTAKE #1 (never start a race too fast)-it was much faster than our training runs, but I felt excited and energetic and went with it…until Mile 6. Then I realized I would not be able to keep up that pace, so I slowed down a little bit. Fearful of dehydration I drank cups of water and HEED at every water station which was every 2 miles-ROOKIE MISTAKE #2 (never drink or eat anything you did not train with, such as HEED). I also had been used to wearing my water belt on the long runs and sipping along as we ran our distance-ROOKIE MISTAKE #3 (wear the same gear as your training runs, such as your running belt).
Around mile 10 I started to feel the water and HEED sitting in my belly. But I kept running. We were also given advice by marathon veterans to take GU’s about every hour, no matter what, even if we had to GAG it down. ROOKIE MISTAKE #4, (Don’t change your nutrition schedule from what you did on your training runs). I was used to taking GU after 90-100  minutes, not after every 60 minutes. So I ended up taking more than my training runs. Add that to the warm water and HEED sitting in my belly, it was a recipe for disaster. By Mile 12, I started to feel nauseaus. For the next four  miles I had to walk /run because I was feeling sick. A few times I started to see black spots and heard a “swooshing” sound in my ear. Looking back I probably should have stopped but I was so determined to finish even though I was literally overheating and dehydrated as the minutes ticked along. By Mile 16 it felt like I was walking more than running. I kept “ver-ping” which was vomit/burping, and I literally had to focus on not puking. But I kept going…I could not believe this was my marathon experience. IT SUCKED!
I thought about calling Chris and having him pick me up around mile 18. I was so sick of this trail, we had spent countless hours running up and down this very route –ROOKIE MISTAKE #5 (don’t overtrain so muych on the same trail that you become sick of it! Keep your runs  fresh and fun). Anyway, back to the race…around Mile 18 I heard Andrea! My marathon mama angel! I was so happy to see her, mainly because if I passed out at least I knew she would get help for me! Joking! (not really) It was so nice to have the distraction as well and have her motivate me, chat with me, anything to not think about throwing up!
Picture courtesy of MIM gal Debbie
Those last few miles were a blur. Although I remember being so happy to see some Moms in Motion ladies cheering us on (Kathy and Debbie) which just about brought tears to my eyes to see them support us along. Finally around mile 25 I saw my mother in law who so graciously agreed to run the last mile with me. I started to focus on all the support I was receiving and mustered all I could into running and finishing strong…Okay honestly I focused on staying upright.
FINALLY, the finish line
That last mile lasted FOREVER but finally, finally, FINALLY I saw my daughter, my family, and the other mamas family…and of course the FINISH LINE! Yahoo! I saw Sarah at the end, who had a great race. She totally kicked Booty! Go Sarah! I said a few words to her, trying not to pass out and vomit. I was so happy to be done. So my final time was 4:59:08…just shy of 5 hours..augh…
My #1 Supporter
 My first marathon experience was horrific. I can’t really say I enjoyed it. It was so heart breaking for me as I thought of all the Saturdays I gave up, long hours I put into my runs, the time away from my baby girl…ony to have such a tramautic experience.  This couldn’t be it!!! Could it???
I moped around the rest of that day and the next, disappointment in myself, even though I had just ran a MARATHON! It was no easy feat and rather than being proud and excited, all I felt was disappointment and frustration. Helllo!   Pity Party…reservation for ONE!
So what was my solution to my Pity Party??? Why, run another marathon of course! And to add more excitedment to it, why not run another one 3 weeks later!  (more to come on that)
Anyway, I am greatful for the support my friends and famiy throughout the past 6 months-it has been an exhausting but a very fulfilling journey. I’ve learned a lot about myself and about running. I’ve always grown closer to four amazing women who inspire and motivate me in very different ways.
Thank you ladies and looking forward to more future runs. WE DID IT!!!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Andrea's Marathon Experience!

Happy smile after my finish!
Ok...guess it's about time we posted about our marathon...someone needs to get the ball rolling so here goes! I'm going to post on just my experience as I think we'll get a different perspective from each person. Here was my marathon experience...

It was a beautiful  morning, though it was warm already. I remember seeing the temperature sign on my way to meet the SMM's and it was already in the 50's at 5:45am. Of course it was...we had trained in nothing but snow, ice, hail, wind, rain and cold so wouldn't you know it, it was going to be a sunny, warm, outstanding day! Murphy's Law...(I don't know if any of my fellow SMM's know, but my maiden name is Murphy!)

The start was optimistic and exciting. Nervous chatter with each other and we just wanted to get going. Bethany and Ashley asked me if I was going to run with Mirna and I said, yes, though it would be a risk as she is a faster runner than I am and I could end up running alone. I was prepared for that is a race and we each have to know we are running at our own pace and I didn't want anyone to feel like they had to wait for me. We did all concur though that our goal was to finish and no one really wanted to run it all alone. We all started together and away we went! We started fast...about a 9 minute mile for the first mile, which is faster than I can maintain for much longer than about 4 miles. We were still in the 9's the first 4 miles and Mirna and Sarah were pulling away from me while Bethany and Ashley were just behind me. There I was, somewhere in the middle. Mirna came back to me and said she wanted to hang with me and didn't feel like she could keep up with Sarah but by mile 6, she was just fast enough to the point that I just couldn't keep up her pace. I looked at my watch and I was at 56 minutes. Too fast. Mirna high-fived the "6 mile sign" and we separated.

The next 12 miles or about 2 hours were at a much slower pace. I got back into my 10 minute mile or so rhythm and just kept telling myself to slow down. And I had to. Flash back to the weather - It was SO FREAKING HOT! I had to take 2-3 cups of water at every water station and gulp them down. I had a hard time cooling myself and was so frustrated that I was just too warm. I had to walk. A lot. Through every water station and anytime there was even a slight rise in elevation. Or long stretches of nothing but sunny trail...any excuse to walk for 20 seconds. I didn't walk for long stretches of time, just a few seconds even, but it helped to keep me going. I was running alone but had the same group of people around me and everyone was doing the same thing. I didn't feel so bad. And it was fun to chat along the way with others who were in the same boat as I was. Some new people would come from behind and I had lots of nice comments on our SMM shirts. The back of mine says "Run, Mommy, Run!" and I had a lot of people say it was cool or ask about my kids. I loved it - talking about my kids gives me great pride and it helped to pass the time. Others would say that they saw more of our shirts behind me and I would ask how far back the others (Bethany and Ashley) were. I was certain that they would catch me. I looked back for them a lot knowing that the slower I got and the more I walked I would surely see them soon. I was praying for it so I could have my SMM support. Instead, I found something else that I wasn't prepared to see. There, at mile 18, like a mirage in front of me, was Mirna. A sight for my sore eyes - I was ecstatic and woo hoo'd to her like you couldn't believe. However, she didn't appear to be in a woo hoo mood.

Mirna and I finished the last 8.2 miles of the marathon together. We ran, I chatted a little, she didn't say much. We walked, I chatted (a little less), she didn't say much. She wasn't feeling well at all. She told me she was nauseous, had been seeing spots, and was overheated. The heat had hit her hard and she wasn't well. I truly thought I should get a medic for her as I was so worried - I even asked her if she would honestly tell me if she needed medical help. She just wasn't her usual self - she is the one who pulls me along and motivates me to run faster and stronger. She gives me pep talks on long runs when I start to drag and is always encouraging. She pushes me and is right there for me. So we finished together. She told me several times to go ahead and go. Another flash back - to the goal - we just wanted to finish. (Yes, once the rubber hits the road you want to be done in a reasonable amount of time - we all wanted to finish in 4 1/2 to 5 hours - so that was hanging out there). It didn't matter anymore - we just wanted to finish.

We crossed the finish line together at 4:59:08. We looked strong and I am certain I felt better than Mirna, though the first words out of my mouth were "I am never doing that again!" My dad and step mom were there to witness my finish and those words. Hold that thought...

It was grueling but we did it! We had completed our first marathon!! Sarah was there to cheer us across the finish line - she had an amazing run and I am so proud of her! Just a few minutes later here came Bethany and Ashley - we ALL did it. The last year of consistent running together and the last 4 months of marathon-focused training all culminated in our success at all crossing the finish line, and for the most part, in one piece. I couldn't be more proud of my friends and running family, the Spokane Marathon Mamas!

We didn't talk much after the race, just some well-wishes to each other, some "that was totally awful" words and we went our separate ways. We checked in a little the week following and then we celebrated on Saturday, May 21 at Spa Paradiso! Check them out: Nothing like a little pampering of the muscles and a little polishing of the toes to help us recuperate! We also got to share all of our experiences from the race - it was so good to decompress and just let it all out to each other. It was mostly good and fun conversation and laughter - the pain from the marathon had already subsided. (Oh, and literally, I had very little pain. I decided to do my first ice bath after the run and was a little sore going down stairs on Sunday and by Monday was fine! Hooray!)

So ok...the happy marathon revisiting only made me more excited to do my next one! Yes, I know...I mentioned above that I would never do it again, but by Monday I said I could probably be talked into doing it again and then by Tuesday I was fully ready to go ahead and plan for another one. Very strange. The torture of it all disappears very soon - sooner than I thought! Not sure when I'll actually take the time to do it though...such a time commitment and hard on the family.

Final thoughts: It was tough to run in the warm weather, so that made me frustrated. I walked more than I wanted, so hit frustration there as well. I am proud of myself for setting a goal and accomplishing it. It's been nice to receive congrats and compliments on my achievement but I don't feel like a super woman or anything extra amazing for doing it. Maybe if I was faster, finished in the front of my age group or was competitive, I would feel like more of a star. I went out a did a long run with my friends, part of it great, part of it stinks and overall, am proud of myself for the length of time and distance I ran. I am glad I did it and finished and couldn't have picked better mamas to train with and finish with. I am proud of all of us and know I couldn't have done it without them. They are the best and I look forward to the next race we train for!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Week 16 Complete: MARATHON or BUST

We ALL survived our first marathon. However, some of us have been too traumatized to post our experience...okay just kidding, we are still recovering!

However, we promise to post our marathon soon! But thanks for checking us out!

-Spokane Marathon Mamas

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Week 15 Complete-Total Weekly Miles=19

Our last weekend run and of course it has to rain!!! But it was nice to have the whole gang back together again one last time before the MARATHON!!! It was a misty, cool 8 mile loop beginning at Manito Duck Pond up to 57th off High Drive and back to Manito. It's amazing how 8 miles seemed so short compared to all our previous Saturday runs. Thanks for a great run ladies!

Mirna, Sarah, Ashley, Andrea, and Bethany

-Posted by Mirna

Friday, May 6, 2011

You Might Be A Runner...

You might be a runner if ...

1. Your shoes have more miles on them than your car does.
2. You run farther in a week than your car travels for work.
3. The dogs have to hurry to keep up.
4. Your calves are bigger than your biceps.
5. You schedule life around your long runs.
6. You spend more on work-out clothes than work clothes.
7. You wear those same work-out clothes on the weekends regularly.
8. You carry a water bottle with you everywhere you go.
9. You're running in your dreams.
10.You combine phrases like "8 miles"and "short run" in the same breath.

-posted by Mirna

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Mid Week Run

"Some running is good, more is better, and too much is just enough." - Anonymous

We are down to the final weeks before M-Day! Andrea and Mirna made plans to run early Wednesday morning again at 5:30 to get through their long mid week run. After completing 8 miles in the beautiful morning weather, they felt ready to tackle the day.

However, it wasn't until later that evening that Mirna discovered that they were only supposed to do 5 miles that day! Oops, oh well, now time to enjoy the Taper!

-posted by Mirna