Hello, I have been running for About 5 years now! I live up on the Iron Range and do the majority of my runs up here, though I do run in races all over. I have run 8 marathons, and a few Half Marathons! Lately my focus has been on getting in more Half Marathons, because after running my first one in June 2012, I decided I loved the distance! Running is a huge part of my life, and I plan on doing it for many years to come. I love participating in races, they are always such a fun time and you can meet many interesting people at each event. I have met several runners over the years and have heard many interesting stories about their runs, and places they have traveled! Running is a great hobby that I feel most people can do, for me it is about competing with myself, and staying healthy at the same time!
February 9, 2010: Fitgers
October 11, 2009: My First Marathon
The Whistlestop on Saturday was my first Marathon, and it was a great event, despite the cold weather. I got to the Civic Center early because I wanted to figure everything out, and not miss the bus. It turned out it was really simple, and there was no line for the full Marathon buses. After the bus ride to the start, I realized I now had a full hour to wait for the race to start. So I made my way into the lounge and found a seat, and started my waiting with a coffee and a water. I met a few very nice runners in there that I was able to talk to for a while, one even made a joke about my Vikings sweatshirt, implying that It must be one of my throw away items. I headed out to warm up and use the bathroom at about 20 minutes to 9, but after I got through the bathroom line I heard the announcer say 3 minutes till the start, so my warm-up was gonna take place from the bathrooms to the start line. I did notice a second much faster bathroom line after I had been in my line a while, and by the time I noticed I was already dedicated to my line so I waited it out.
At the start I positioned my self around a few other people who were aiming for around a 4 hour time, so I felt comfortable there, even though It looked like we were about a block back from the actual start line. After we started I realized I could have been much closer when I started passing large numbers of people, which proved hard on the slick narrow path with out going off to the side in the snow. I really did not want to get my feet wet so I tried to avoid doing that. After a couple miles I started thinking that I was actually there doing my first marathon, and it was a great feeling. After hitting the first water station and seeing the fans cheering I felt even better, I got so energized every station where there were fans cheering and music blaring! It was so great I loved the feeling every time coming to the parts where people were cheering. This was the best part of the whole thing for me! The dedication of these people is so amazing it makes me feel like I should have a small group of people behind them cheering them on as they cheer the runners on! I even imported a couple of fans from Canada (My Dad and his Wife) who were cheering me on. It was funny seeing them standing there as I ran by for the few seconds I saw them, and then a mile or two later there they were again! They jumped to several spectator points, and it seemed like each corner I came around there they were, it was awesome! They were very good fans, I recommend them to anyone! There were a few points where leaves were falling from trees on both sides of the path and it looked like confetti being rained down on us runners! I felt so perfect for the first half, my body felt great my breathing was awesome, I was around a 1:40-1:45 for the first half. I have been sick the previous week, and not fully recovered by saturday I just wanted to finish this event, and hopefully under 4 hours. I was feeling so great around halfway that I felt that I was going to do better than I planned!
around mile 16 though I started feeling tightness in my right quads and the back of my upper right leg. This really affected my pace and I started dropping back a bit and many runners were passing me. I kept pushing and soon my left leg was feeling the same, and they both felt really heavy. After a few miles of this new pace another runner came by and asked how my run was going. I told him my issues I was having and he said he had these electrolyte tablets that help cramps I could take at the next water staton if I wanted. Even though they would not help immediatly I figured I might as well. This never happened though, about a half mile before the next station just before mile 21 my right leg cramped so bad I could feel the muscle bulging out, and this brought me to an immediate stop. For a minute I could not bend it at all to even walk, so I moved to the side and stretched the muscles as best I could, and eventually I was able to walk again on it and then I started a slow run, and it felt really good, my stride felt better, until they cramped again about a half mile later! I stopped and stretched again, and waled some then I was able to do a slow jog for a while with the cramps coming and going. I started walking the water stations and then doing my best slow jog I could after each. I knew I had less than 5 miles left and nothing was going to stop me from finishing. I just pushed through the pain and maintained my slow pace until I met back up with the same guy, and he was having cramps also, so I walked with him for a bit and then we started a slow jog together. We were passed by many runners and we were estimating a 4:30 finish time, and I was a little bummed by this but truley just wanted to finish at this point. After walking a bit Around the 23 mile mark we started a slow jog again, and I was feeling somewhat better with the pain a little numbed now. We came to the last water station and decided we were gonna run past and keep pushing for the finish. We met another runner around then who asked if we thought we would break 4 hours, and we had no clue because we had no time. He said according to his watch we had been running 3:47 at that point. This made me pretty happy realizing me only had about a mile and a half to go, so if he was right we would be right around the 4 hour mark. Much better than the 4:30 we had been thinking. This gave use energy to put a decent effort in to the last mile, and as we came around the final corner the clock said 4:04 and it was a great sight to see all the fans cheering and the fact that we were actually running and not hobbling in which I was afraid would happen right at the end if my cramps attacked again. I made it and it was amazing, and then it was very cold. So cold I found my parents and we made it to the food tent and I ate a lot of everything, I was starved! Then I was so cold and sore I could baely walk and I really wanted to find my drop bag to get my warm clothes on! Which happened to be in the civic center in the warmth. I felt weird and happy and sore and cold and in a trance, and it was so great.
I stayed around and got my medal engraved and watched the awards, which had a small turn out due to the cold weather. I ran into David Hyopponen, after I heard his name called for winning his age ground for the half. Congrats again David. After talking to him I found he finished 4th over all which is outstanding, especially in a group of 1800 runners. I really wish I woul dhave run into other people from Northland runner, or people I have met from other races, but I guess there will be other events where I will get tha chance. I have been really stiff and sore in my upper legs since the finish and I am staying warm and relaxing. I am already thinking about which events I want to do next! I have to agree with the sign I saw held by a couple who made it to several of the spectator points "I love Running!"