links for 2007-05-01

My husband. Man of the Year.

If you’ll remember correctly – NikkiZ woke up Friday morning covered in vomit, throwing a huge wrench into our plans. My husband spent quite a bit of time that morning irritated that he was missing his golf tournament and no where near enough time (in my opinion) upset about missing my marathon. HOWEVER – he has so redeemed himself it’s not even funny. Here’s how:

  • He changed at least 1 million outfits (on himself and NikkiZ) that were covered with various unpleasant bodily fluids.
  • He change at least 1 million sick-poop diapers.
  • He rocked and coddled a very sick baby by himself for 72 hours.
  • He monitored fever and fluid intake religiously.
  • He bathed a sick baby several times. Some because she was covered in her own waste. Some because it just made her feel better

On top of all of those things that come with caring for a sick child alone, he also did the following to assure I would not have to lift a finger when I came home from my marathon.

  • Vacuumed
  • Did all laundry created from Puke/Poopfest 2007. Grand total of about 5 loads.
  • Scrubbed all floors
  • Cleaned storm door, inside and out
  • Scrubbed bathtubs and toilets hoping to remove germs before my arrival
  • Dusted
  • Washed dishes (by hand, or dishwasher is still dead)
  • Put up toys
  • Made the beds
  • Got the baby to sleep last night so I could go to bed early

I came home to a home cleaner that it has ever been minus a few days before big events. He did all of that even with a sick child. He is truly – a man who shines in a crisis. A man who knows that there are times for sitting on his ass and then there are times that if he leaves things for his wife to do, she may replace his shampoo with Nair and his toothpaste with diaper cream. He is very smart.

And also very cute.

Report from the house of the pitiful

Oh yeah – I guess I should update you on NikkiZ too, huh? She’s not even close to 100%. BUT – she hasn’t run a fever in 24 hours and she hasn’t vomited in 2 days. Her poops are still not even close to solid, but we’re sending her to daycare anyway because we’re kinda awful parents like that. It’s just that other than the poops, she’s better. We’re hoping it’s just taking her body awhile to get back on track.

Now – on to the fun stuff: What On My Body Hurts.

First off? I am FRIED. I haven’t had sunburn in years and I’ve forgotten how much it sucks. I put sunscreen on the morning of the marathon, but I didn’t think to send any with my family so I could reapply. But even if I had – I wouldn’t have put it on the backs of my legs – which is one of the places I’m burnt. Let me tell you – there is nothing sexier than a sock line. Then – add the sports bra burn line on my neck and shoulders, and it’s no wonder my husband could keep his hands off of me.

My joints are all a little sore today. I think the 2.5-hour drive home didn’t help that at all. But that’s not too bad.

The bottoms of my feet are still in BAD shape. I’m trying to walking without touching the parts that hurt which means I’m walking like I was raped by an elephant. (See? SO SEXY.) My Dad seemed to think that I didn’t even need the t-shirt or the medal because you could tell by my walk what I had been doing all day. That was very true in downtown Nashville. You could look down the street and spot who had run that day. But here in Huntsville? I just look like I was raped by an elephant.

I’m heading to work for most of the day – but not a full day. I feel better when I get up and walk around – the stiffness that settles in when I’m sedentary is lethal. I’m supposed to get a massage tomorrow – let’s home nothing keeps me from that because it is one of the many things I focused on to get through the pain.

Oh – and if you have access to the newspaper in Nashville from yesterday – if you look at the bottom of the last page of marathon results – I’m about 30th from last. Which means I beat 30 finishers and almost 1,700 people who started but didn’t finish. MrZ says I also beat the 23,000 that only ran the half-marathon – and I like the way that sounds. So – if you add those numbers up, I actually beat 24,700 people. That’s way more than 30.

I can NOT even move this morning

What’s up? How are y’all? Did you have a good day yesterday? Yeah. Me too. I RAN A DAMN MARATHON.

Okay – first off? Let’s just say that the phrase “I ran a marathon” is not exactly accurate. A better choice of words would be “I ran more than half of the marathon and then hobbled the other half.”

I got to the start line at 7am, but they were doing corral starts and we were put in a corral based on how fast we said we’d run. I assumed that we would all start at the same time, it would just take those of us in back longer to actually cross the start line. Nope. They actually started each corral separately. I started at 7:40am, which means my mile 1 time was almost 1 hour. That’s a pretty depressing start to a race.

Luckily, my Dad, son, and brother were there to cheer me on. I got to hug LilZ right before I started which was the boost I needed. I saw them again at mile 8 (I beat them to mile 3 because I was SO DAMN FAST.) and stopped for a second to eat some of their food. I had been feeling really light headed. Probably because it got very hot very fast.

My longest run of the training has been 16 miles, and I walked a lot of that. I also got blisters around the 14 mile mark, which is pretty typical for me. I went into yesterday expecting the same, and knowing the last half of the marathon would be pretty painful. Little did I know? That something about yesterday would inspire my feet to blister at mile 4.

Mile 4 of 26.2.

By mile 9 or 10, at least one of them had popped and I had them on the bottoms of both feet. I was still running, but not well, and I was being passed by walkers. But – I was still running and was in a good crowd. However, I noticed almost the entire crowd around me was wearing yellow numbers, which mean they were running the half-marathon. I started wondering how thin the group would get at the 11-mile mark when we split off.

Oh – and hearing them all cheer at the 6.6 mark, “Halfway there!” made me want to smack someone. I was all, “Seriously? Are there no other marathoners around me to cry with right now?”

When the 11-mile split came, they divided us down a closed 4-lane road. The marathoners were running on the left side while the halfers were running on the right. The right side of the highway was packed full of runners. The left side? Was me and, like three other people. That would be when I started getting a wee depressed. I just suddenly felt lonely. Everybody had a running buddy it seemed, but me. I started thinking about how my husband and daughter – half of my family – were 120 miles away. I was thinking about how I had so far to go. How my feet hurt so bad. How much my family would hate me if I quit.

Around mile 13, we turned to a more secluded area. Since the roads were shut down, the only activity you saw were marathoners and anyone at water breaks along the way. Part of the road past 13.1 turned down this greenway by the river. Gorgeous. But so quiet and lonely. That was probably the darkest part of the race. I was still running, but barely. I was upset with my feet for crapping out on me so early. I was upset with the corral start that had me in a group 40 minutes slower than I should be (I felt like if I were 40 minutes ahead, I wouldn’t be so alone.) I kept being passed by pairs of people talking and chatting their way down this lonely stretch of road. I was not in a good place.

I called everyone in my family twice for the next 2 miles or so. I cried to my Mom. I cried to my husband. I called my brother and tried not to cry but he could hear it in my voice. He was going to meet me at mile 20 and run the last 6 with me. After hearing me he said, “We’ll head to mile 19 and just walk backwards until we see you.” I was happy he didn’t tell me to get over it since he’s the man who ran his first marathon AFTER swimming 2.4 miles and biking 112 miles.

Around mile 14 or so, I started walking/running. My feet were just hurting so bad that every pound to the pavement on my blisters made me want to cry. Around mile 15 a girl started talking to me. Jennifer. My angel from Texas. She was all, “The bottoms of my feet hurt. And they never hurt!” and I hugged her and asked her to be my BFF. We walked/jogged together for the next mile or so and then committed to just walking awhile. I felt happy again. We got out of the damn stretch of the course where it was just us and the river and we got back into civilization. I was thanking the spectators and the police men still holding the course for us. I was a barrel of sunshine. Like a totally different person. I was walking, but I was HAPPY.

My brother met us at the 18.5 mile mark. That was great. We jogged a couple of feet every mile, but mostly it was me hobbling. We were going to see my Dad and LilZ at mile 20 and I joked I wanted to run toward them so it would look like I had been running the whole time. We ran and then I popped the other blister on the other foot. AWESOME. That’s what I get for showing off.

Jennifer ended up walking ahead of us a short while later, I was going very slow for miles 21-23 or so. Like 22 minute miles. I kept telling myself, “It is not this race that should represent my accomplishment. It’s the 400+ miles I have RUN up until this point to train.” I was trying not to get down on myself for walking so much, I wanted to remember all of the running I had done until that point. But it was hard. 22-minute miles is slower than I walk in normal life.

Around mile 23.5 or so I started feeling the finish line getting close, so I was able to pick up the pace. I think those last 2+ miles were about 18-minute paces. I looked at my watch at one point and thought, “The 25-mile marker should be here soon.” Then, this lovely woman who was still there cheering us on said, “Good job! The 25-mile marker is hiding behind that ambulance right there.” I about kissed her I was so happy. 1.2 more miles.

At the 1-mile to go mark, there was a huge sign that said, “We (heart) Kim!” I told the people sitting next to it that my name was Kim and thanked them for the sign. It was the first sign I had seen with my name all day. I thought I would see more since “Kim” is such a common name. But if I were only going to see one? That was the best one ever.

My Dad and LilZ were at the 26-mile mark. I asked LilZ if he could run the last stretch with me, and he said “Yes” which was awesome since he’d been walking all day. We ran, I mean, ran to the finish line. My Mom and Aunt were there cheering us on. I crossed the finish line with my son. My husband and daughter couldn’t be there – but crossing that line with my son was amazing. And then being able to do it with the rest of my family watching? Was the most amazing thing. It was as close as it could have been to perfect without MrZ and NikkiZ there. It wasn’t the showing I had hoped for, but the medal represents more than those 26 miles. It represents me not even being able to run half a block a year ago. It’s the 2 half marathons I ran before. It’s the 300+ miles of running I did to train. It represents me – a girl who hates to excercise – a girl who loves her TV and donuts – proving that you can really do anything once you put your mind to it.

I want to run another one someday, after I have a life more conducive to the training requirements. I had to short myself on a lot of runs because where do I find the time for a 10-mile run three times a week? I will stick with the half-marathon distance though. It doesnt take too much to train for that. I want to stick with running, maybe 20 miles a week if I can. And then run one or two half-marathons a year (I love getting those medals too much!) but I won’t do another marathon until I’ve got all of my kids at least in school.

But I did it yesterday. And I have no idea if you all realize how much you were in my heart. Especially those miles 11-14. I kept telling myself that my friends inside the computer were cheering me on. They believed in me. They think I can do it. And if they think I can, then I must be able to because they’re always right about everything else.

Thank you.

(Coming next: A list of things that hurt on me. Starting with my sunburn which is sexy because I now have a sock tanline. SO HOTT.)

I Am SO Proud of Her!

Done

This is LilZ here.We just got back from the Country Music Marathon.The only reason I am writing is my Mom, MissZ is laying motionless, watching Jurassic Park, I think it is 3, with her bro’ and dad. I am really tired and my feet hurt.:( I know she should be the one complaining, but we have been walking around all day looking at Tennessee and meeting Momma at her mile markers.

We went and ate at the place below our hotel and ate breakfast, then we came up to the hotel room and chilled for a second, other than that, we had no time to rest. OH!And we rode he elevator to the 23 floor. I got really scared. Well, I gotta go watch JP3. See y’all kitkats on the flipflops later!