My sister was doing the 1/2 so when the gun went off, we hugged and said good bye. I started off with my friends Teresa and Jim, both experienced marathoners. I stayed with them for the first couple of miles and decided to back off as the pace was too fast for me and my bum knees.
I felt great for the first 9 miles, then like clockwork, the right knee started to hurt at mile 10. I tried to stay positive. I found a grassy spot on the side of the road sat down and stretched it out. I don't know if it was the stretching or the little girl who told me that I was to pretty to be in the race, but the pain was relieved for a while.
I made it through the first 1/2 and thought it's all downhill from here. I started hitting the wall at mile 18, but got over it pretty quick. Then came mile 20. My legs started cramping so bad, I had to stop a guy standing in front of his house if he had any salt. He brought out a salt shaker and I thanked him and poured salt into my Gatorade. I had read in Runner's World that salt helps in cramping, and it did.
The last 6 miles were really hard. My longest training run to that point was 18 miles (due to my knee trouble). I struggled with leg cramps and sore knees the entire 6 miles. When I would stop and walk, my legs got stiffer and the pain got worse, go I had to keep moving as much as possible. Once I saw the Gateway (where the finish was) I prayed for strength. When I got to the corner, I saw Jim, Jen, Teresa and Bob cheering for me. Once I turned the corner, David and my sister were there cheering. When I got to the chute, David and my sister ran the last 100 yards with me through the finish! It was great!
After crying for about a minute I went right to the aid stations for ice packs!
David and I at the Finish!
Me and my sister sportin' our new "Bling"!