Marathon No. 22 for me is in the books and my love of the St. George Marathon is still going strong. The way I run it has changed dramatically in the 12 times I have run, but fast or slow, it is still an amazing course and has somehow become a part of me. For the past several years we have had a big group of family go down for the marathon and the entire weekend has felt like a big party. This year though it was just my little family as well as Sean and Jessica so I worried that we might feel a little lonely. But with several thousand other runners and their friends and families, there was still plenty of love and excitement. Because Ruby's birthday was on Thursday, we didn't drive down until Friday morning so there was not a lot of time to wander around and get nervous. We headed straight to the expo to shop, sample, and pick up my race packet. Dinner that night was a carb fest with lasagna, bread, and pumpkin cookies and we all went to bed pretty early with dreams of Gatoradae and Gu.
We all got up and going without too much difficulty which if you know how Broadbents sleep, that was a small miracle. Jesse had made Kodiak cakes the night before so we made ourselves peanut butter and banana sandwiches, did one last check of our gear bags, and headed out for the starting line. On the drive there we had Tad's OU Theater Department Dance Party Mix playing, so by the time we arrived we were excited and ready to run - ok that might be a little bit of an exaggeration, but at least we were awake and not entirely grumpy. The bus ride was smooth and we made it to the top with about an hour before the race was set to begin. As usual, we spent most of that time alternating between the bathroom lines and trying to figure out how to stay warm. We took care of the most important pre-race ritual, the hand mantras, and with that, were ready to go. Sean and Jess were planning to do a run/walk, but we all started out together and ran the first few miles as a group. I knew that I needed to keep my pace even and watch my heart rate if I wanted to have a good run so we eventually separated, I turned up my music, and settled in for a long run.
As I approached the end and crossed the finish line, I felt so blessed - blessed that I found something in running and racing that brings me so much joy and satisfaction, blessed that even though I've slowed down, I'm still healthy enough to run and race, and blessed to have so much support from those that I love best. My overall time ended up being 4:46. This was a minute faster than last year but somehow felt so much tougher. Unfortunately, within a few minutes of finishing, I suddenly felt super sick and like I was going to puke, or pass out of both. I wandered into the park and found a space blanket to lie down on and just laid there for about 20 minutes, feeling quite miserable. After a bit though everything settled down and I was able to get up and go welcome Sean and Jesse to the finish line. They finished so much sooner than expected, and I was impressed that they were able to power through on so little training. Once again, we all did it and as always, the accomplishment felt great!
Best cheerleaders ever!
It's tough work spectating so they made sure to fuel with Kodiak Cakes - best pre race fuel ever. Tim sent me this picture with a test message of "Go Mama Go" and it came through mid race. The picture made me smile and the chant gave me a boost for the next several miles.
The focus of the weekend is definitely the marathon, but we try to make it a vacation for the kids as well. Their favorite part of any trip to St. George is time at the swimming pool and we had a great time playing in the water. The kids made some friends and had plenty of space to splash and play.