The 5 runners: B, L, T, W, and ME
At the starting corral....the upside down hamstring stretch view.....
The starting corral was divided into A, B, C, D, and "open." The "open" corral was waaaaaaaayyyyy behind all the cool elite athletes. "Open" translated into "those who are so slow they're really not "running" a marathon but would like to be humored into believing they are." It took us nearly 20 minutes after the official start to get from here.......
Just to put that into perspective for you.....by the time we actually made it to the Start line the elite runners were probably already 5 miles into the marathon.
T and I lost B early on in the race because by mile 3 she was vomiting on the side of the road. She had taken an antibiotic before the race for a sinus/throat ailment and it wasn't agreeing with her. It took her a while to shake it off.
The next 2 photos were taken around the 10K marker.
Absolutely loved running through this part of Chicago with the old Brownstone style homes. There were people outside their homes with hoses squirting all the runners down.
Had to get a picture of all the trampled water
and Gatorade cups....
The next 2 photos were taken around the 25K marker....we're still not looking too shabby. But you'll notice that I didn't get another photo until the finish line because we were hitting the wall somewhere around the 18 - 20 mile mark. The heat was unbearable and it was 10 degrees cooler than last year's marathon. I couldn't imagine trying to get through it with 90 degree heat.
If you look waaaay off in the distance you can see the finish line. There truly is NOTHING like finally seeing that finish line after running 26.2 miles in the sun and heat. It was a wonderful moment!
T and I after we met up with the rest of the clan after the race.
W in the middle finished with a personal best of 3:57.....WOW!
Me and Papa Smurf
I finished the marathon with my first ever running battle wound. This is my 2nd marathon and I've never gotten a blister from running. Can you believe it?
Because of the heat and sun there were hoses everywhere....home and business owners had hoses held up for the participants to run through to cool off. There were fire hydrants opened up every couple miles or so. We hit EVERY single one of them. It was hot. It felt good. The problem was that by the time we finished we were soaked from head to toe. I was running with squishy and sloshy running shoes. My feet were pruney and rubbing in places they normally wouldn't.
I apologize in advance for the following photo...but I really just can't help myself. Check out my first blister ever (yes, my FIRST) on the inside of my big toe...it's about the size of a quarter and wraps around under my toe. I'm really quite proud of it. Please don't pay attention to the nasty old paint job....It's obviously been awhile since I've painted the toes.
I hobbled on over to the podiatry tent shortly after taking this picture and felt like a big baby for complaining about my little old blister when I took a look at the feet on the woman on the cot next to me. Holy Hell! Her feet were encased in 2 gigantic blisters. She was in a lot of pain. It took everything in me not to whip out my camera and grab a shot of those bad boys. She won't be wearing shoes for quite some time.
And that's it.
It's officially over (read with dramatic sigh of relief).
The 1/2 marathon is in April. I have 6 months. My goal: I'm going to finish the 1/2 in 2 hrs 10 mins.