Disclaimer: I received a free entry to the Santa Rosa Marathon as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review, find, and write race reviews!
I did it! It may have been painful and it may have been really slow, but I did it! I am now a 19 time full marathon finisher!
The Santa Rosa Marathon wasn’t my slowest marathon ever (my first full marathon postpartum, Orange County Marathon, was my slowest) and a far cry from my PR of 4:28, but today I am celebrating my progress, not perfection. As I wrote in my pre-race blog post, I really wanted to drop down to the half marathon, but I pushed through the full. I wanted to quit, but I kept putting one foot in front of the other.💥
Let’s back it up to the start of race day morning. My alarm went off at 3am with the goal to leave the house by 3:45am. By 4am I was on the road to make it for the 6:30am race start time. Normally, when I’m driving two plus hours away for a race, I stop along the way to grab some coffee and a little something to eat. Sadly, I stopped at three different places and each one was closed. I finally found a place close to the starting line, ran in quickly to get some food/coffee, used the restroom, and rushed to the starting line. I parked my car and made it to the starting line with 10 minutes to spare. Enough time to run into Vanessa and find Holly.
One of the first things Holly said to me was, “Want to drop down to the half?” Although I REALLY wanted to drop down to the half, I told her no and we made our way into corral three.
As we started to run those first few miles, my mind went from, “Oh, this isn’t so bad,” to ” Uh oh! What have I gotten myself into!” and then back again.
By mile six, Holly and I had gotten into a nice rhythm and my hopes were high that we could keep up our run/walk pace.
At mile 10, we had the pleasure of running through DeLoach Vineyards and receiving a shot of chardonnay. Yum!
Shortly after the 10 mile mark, things started falling apart pretty quickly. I could already feel blisters forming on my feet, the sun came out from behind the clouds, and I was slowing down.
By mile 15, I told Holly to continue on without me since she was still feeling good. After a little bit of protest she wished me well and away she went. I proceeded to walk the remaining 11 plus miles. Yes, that’s right. I walked nearly the entire second half of the marathon.
Some of the highlights of the rest of the race include getting to try some local grapes being passed out by some of the residents along the route. They also served ice cold water in mason jars to us.
If it hadn’t been for not wanting to let anyone down, I probably would have called it quits somewhere along the course. I was not in the physical nor mental state to be completing a marathon.
When I finally made it to the finish line, I didn’t even take any pictures. I hobbled my way back to my car, pumped (still breastfeeding), and began driving home. I had thought that after pumping I’d go back to the beer fest, but I forgot to bring my Oofos recovery sandals, I didn’t want to walk back in my running shoes, and I wanted to get home to spend some time with baby.
Now I’m more motivated than ever to take marathon training for the California International Marathon more seriously. It’s amazing the difference proper training makes (and the lack thereof). 🏃🏻♀️ A special shout-out to @inkdchinagirl who stuck by my side from the start all the way to mile 15. At this point I knew I was done. She pushed ahead and had a great race! #beastmode Congratulations to all the other Santa Rosa Marathon finishers! Cheers! 🍷
As for the Santa Rosa course and if I think it’d be one I would recommend for you, I can tell you that we got to see some incredible views of vineyards, it was peaceful, and relatively flat. The aid stations were well supplied with volunteers, water, nuun, and gels, but elsewhere on the course there were few spectators. I may just have to run Santa Rosa again next year to better my course time.
Until next time,
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