|L-Me, R- Selene....our shirts say "she runs a mother mile (play on words...another mile, get it?) with arrows pointing at eachother :)|
We headed to the race, where we met up with Heidi, in the loooong porto line. They did this girly warm up with an aerobics type thing...but we were rebellious, and figured that we'd save our calories and energy for the run. We stretched a bit and then lined up with the other 2300 women. The mayor of Vancouver welcomed us and made some strange comment about getting his friend to rub down ladies legs to warm them up. It sounded weird coming from the Mayor. It WAS cold. I heard it was 37 when the race started, but it was crisp and beautiful.
|not sure why we look more like power walkers here, but we were happy :)|
|Nicci and Tamara (taken by my hubby)|
On our way back, we were looking for sweet Heidi. We knew that she was worried about her knee holding up, so we were hoping hoping hoping that it would and that she was having as much fun as we were. We saw her...all smiles! Yay!
We saw Heidi's family again...and were impressed...one dad, 3 kids, two locations! Shortly after, we saw Selene's family. That was so fun! Channing, Selene's little 4 year old was fist pumping, saying "Go, Mama,Go!" so sweet and gave us a nice little boost.
We ran back through seeing all the cheerleaders again, which was AWESOME! So nice to see so many friendly uplifting faces! Around Mile 8-9, we saw my mom, and my hubby again with my kiddos, which was fantastic! They were ringing little bells and cheering loud! Again, impressed with my man, getting around! Shortly after, we saw Alli and Rosemary again, with Nicci's brother Brandon added, who were doing the wave for us! It made us giggle and we appreciated the spirit! We saw some other families, and AGAIN Heidi's little family. Colin, Heidi's hubby got the MVP cheerleader award, we saw them 4 times!!
This was another out and back, sort of, and so we saw many of our friends, again! It was so fun to see our girls killing it at the front of the pack! (Nicci, Tamara, and Mere---going for sub-2). After we rounded the Fred Meyer complex I think Mile 9-10, we got a fun little surprise, my friend Lisa was there on the sidelines, cheering for us! I was SO HAPPY to see her, i had to give her a drive by hug. She's been on a long vacation, and I hadn't seen her for a few weeks, SUCH a treat! We looped around, and ran through the Fort Vancouver park, which was really beautiful. Alot of this mile was uphill, but not as bad as we'd been told, we didnt' think. We were expecting this horrendous hill...but it was doable. We knew that at the top of it, we had just one more mile. During that stretch we saw Alli and Rosemary again, and they told us how easy we made it look...we truly were still enjoying ourselves, and I think we may have even been chatting at this point about running a full marathon :). Looking at my watch, I knew we were right at the time Mere should be crossing if she made sub-2 (which I KNEW she would). Getting up that hill, was work, but we knew we were getting close to finishing. Once we hit Officer's Row, we picked up our pace. Our game plan was to keep it at our consistent 10:30 pace (which was nearly impossible...so hard to hold back!) We bounced around 10-10:15 much of the race. Our uphill pace was around 10:40. Once we hit Officer's Row, we knew we could let all go and run our fannies off. So, we did. 9:50, 9:40, 9:30...our pace kept getting quicker. Selene was telling me," you got this, you got this!" and I was saying back, "WE got this!" It felt good to just haul a** and hold nothing back. The last time I looked at my Garmin, about 12.75 miles, we were hittting 8:40 pace. My Garmin said my best pace was 7:50. Once we saw the 13th mile marker, just around the corner from the finish, the line of runner's was single file in a tight area. Selene was ahead of me and I was just off her shoulder. We passed several runners, which felt so great (sorry, runners! iknow it's not fun to be the one being passed!). Selene was on FIRE.
|Selene, hauling it in to the finish!|
|Me, flying towards the finish--I like that neither of my feet are touching the ground in this pic|
|PUSHING it to the finish.|
I felt like Selene got a block ahead of me, but in reality, she crossed the finish line 10 seconds ahead of me, and only one runner was in between us. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw my mom cheering, and Meleea again, and I was glad I'd looked up from the ground. I pushed one foot in front of the other, and felt SO relieved to see those blue mats in front of me! Selene turned around as soon as she crossed, and I came in just behind her....we hugged and cried. We held on tight, and I thanked her for inviting me on this crazy journey.
|Finish time 2:14:50--average 10:18 pace|
|oops, some of these gals are probably annoyed that we were right on the mats, but we were having a moment!|
When we let go, Meredith was right there on the sidelines...calling me over for the hug I'd been waiting for! We hugged sweaty and tight, and I asked, "did you do it??" And she said yes...1:56. We told each other how proud we were of each other...it was one of my favorite moments of the day. I found my family, and hugged them, and we went back to watch for Heidi.
|The fam at the finish|
|Heidi, coming across the finish line!|
It was a fantastic day. We grabbed our bagels and soup...said goodbye to our families and we sat on the curb eating. I cried some more, telling Selene how much us sharing this had meant to me. I told her how much this experience, not just the race, but the training for the race, had TRULY changed me. Changed my life. We hugged again. We ate...we went and got our free massages and chocolate. It was such a fun race to be a part of!
|Me, Heidi, and Selene at the massage headquarters- GREAT perk of Girlfriends!|