Run Life's Course

Run Life's Course
It's The Course and the Finish that Counts

Sunday, October 10, 2010

10-10-10 The Date to Motivate

It's 6:30AM and time to go to the starting line. Okay hopefully elite status at Hilton lands me a late check out at the Palmer House ( A FABULOUS HOTEL) and it did! 
Walking down Michigan Avenue and there a thousands of people heading to the start. OMG! This is a lot of people. They did not lie about 45,000 participants.

7AM and the elite runners have started. Rock on! There are over 150 women in line for the bathroom still and we have 20 minutes to the first start. Glad I used the restroom in my hotel room. I am in my corral and now people are climbing the fence to get to their respective corrals. We're starting and the alert is still green.

It's very humid. We're off and running. The new meaning of clustrophobic or not being a "people-person"- running with people in front, behind, and beside you with less than an inch distance and no way to move away from the people. Timeout - I can not get into a rhythm. People are EVERYWHERE!

Someone just stopped suddenly and now we are all bumping into each other.

1 mile down and 26 to go and I am completely drenched. This is a problem at 7:40 in the morning.
6MI - The alert is still green. How can this be? I am drenched and it is humid as hell. Now we need sprinkler systems to run through, wet sponges to hold over our head, and extra water. Event organizers are screaming at us to get water, water, water, and more water! Note to self - Didn't you just run in a hot as hell marathon at the end of August? Why are you putting yourself through this?
10MI - No one should ever ask me where I ran because there are too many people around me to know my surroundings. Medics are called and there are two people on the ground panting. 11MI - Water, water, water, and more water! No gel, no banana, no orange, but WATER! People are taking off there pace wristbands and bibs with their desired completion time. It's hot as hell!
12MI - Alert is now YELLOW! Finally!!! Timeout - Why are there so many people around me? There is no breaking point where I have space. I am a NYer but I still need space.
13MI - 19MI - This is the marathon that 3 participants died at or near the finish line because of the heat.  Lord, please forgive me for running in this heat and humidity.  Don't take me out!  And thank God for churches. Three churches passing out water, orange juice, and ice in between our water stops. And this is why I tithe! You never know when you might need help from a church.
20MI - Alert is now RED! Medics coming to the rescue again. 6 more people down within the last mile right in front of me. This is scary! People are passing out like flies. Timeout: Is it worth trying to reach a time by dying or being hospitalized? HELL TO THE NO!!! I hear my mother in my ear saying USE COMMON SENSE! I am going to run slow and walk in between. 5 more miles using common sense and being able to walk away is the smart way to go.
24MI - Now I get space because people are walking all around me. Pace wristbands are on the ground everywhere. People are out of breath and profusely sweating. The sun is beaming and the humidity is off the chain.
25.5MI - A guy just went down and here comes the medics. Timeout: Dude you were 700M away from the finish. You could have walked it in and finished the marathon with a medal. Probably book smart with no common sense.
FINISH - I could not be more happier that this is over. Two people just requested a wheelchair at the finish. WTH! NEVER AGAIN IN HOT AND HUMID WEATHER unless I start training in Zimbabwe.

Volunteers are walking us from the finish line to keep us moving. Next set of volunteers are placing cold towels on our necks as we are walking out of the finish area. Another set of volunteers are passing out ice and ice water. Okay so I am not the only one that realizes its hot. Finally after a lot of walking we are at the exit. Now how do I get back to the Palmer House? Information booth on the left and this volunteer is informationless. Next information booth and they say 6 blocks to the hotel.

City bus city bus city bus! Take me there. Oh what a feeling to sit down. Some African American passengers congratulate me and not the other finishers on the bus.  I think they were just happy to see someone of color.  I"ll take it but I congratulated the other runners.  Here's my stop.  Step lightly off the bus and walk two blocks east to the hotel. I had a hard enough time motivating myself today so I guess that is the true meaning of the Date to Motivate.