The day had arrived. As much as I wanted to be 100% happy, I wasn't. II was okay, but not 100% happy. I had accepted that I had to hold back on my race, but my mind wandered through the countless & relentless hours I ran in my garage with 115F temps, the sweaty days of heat acclimation - to get me prepared for the Disneyland Half Marathon.
Unfortunately, nothing I did could prepare me for a humidity enduced migraine.
The good news is the pain was much less worse, due in part to Mitch's neck massage and another good night of sleep. Oh yea, food too.
My husband and I wore the traditional red Running Troops singlet. We got on the road by 4am. Parked in the parking garage and had plenty of time to get to the porta potties and get into our corrals. He was in E, and I was in A. Sorry, our only post-race photos are on Marathonfoto.com
Although my head was much better, I was drained. I saw on the curb trying to save my energy, but I felt like I could take another nap. My plan was this. Start off at a 9:00 pace. See how that feels and adjust from there, when I needed to. I knew I could run at a comfortable 9:00 min pace.
The bright lights at the start were starting to hurt my eyes, so I decided, despite how foolish I looked, I was wearing my sunglasses when we were running through the parks. I was in survival mode, I had to ensure I finished this race, even if I walked. I didn't pay all this money and train for months to DNF.
We promptly started at 5:30am. I maintained a solid 9:00 min pace until Mile 3. The head and neck wanted to explode. So, I backed down...ran another mile at 9:30 and tried to speed up again. No good. The faster I ran, the more I hurt.
At every aid station, I made sure I took some water. I took my Island Boost fueling at Miles 3, 7 and 11. Electrolyte capsules in between the Island Boost.
While I love, love running through the Disneyland Parks - the Angels Stadium is a very close second. This year was even better! We got to run under the giant "A". Running behind home plate and having the crowd cheer everyone on is purely electric.
Here is my husband at Angel Stadium. He is loving it! (see his Ladybug patch on his singlet?)
As I ran out of the stadium, I was eager to see how my husband was doing. I told him that the ONLY thing I cared about was his health. If he gets swept, he gets swept, but I don't want to see him in the ER.
I had him tracked on my phone and his 5k split showed up and as I as putting my phone away, his 10k showed up. He was holding his own and doing great!
The last few miles were tough. My head was not feeling good (surprise! surprise!). I kept myself going by reminding myself that the sooner I could get to my gear bag, the sooner I could take my migraine meds.
Coming into the FInishing street - the announcer Carissa sees me and announces my name. At that moment, Rudy Novonty stands as a full attention and SCREAMS "RUNNING TROOPS is in the HOUSE! Let's give it up for Charlene Ragsdale!"
I threw my hands up, like I had won an Olympic Event! I was thrilled to hear that the Running Troops got that type of recognition. Thank you Carissa and Rudy, you made my day!
I finished in a respectable 2:06
I picked up my Half Medal and then my Dumbo Double medal.
I walked over to Self-Care and put a pack of ice on my neck and top of my head. Once my head was numb lo, I made my way to the gear check. By then, my right eye was starting to swell, so I need to get something quick.
Grabbed my gear check bag and made my way to a shaded area to sit down. Ate a few bites of food and then took my meds. The effects of the meds usually take 30 minutes. In that 30 minutes, I was texting my friend, Vera (we ran DL and LAM together) and she found me in my shaded area. So, good to sit and chat. Here is our photo. Once again, she PR'd and her C2C medal - she earned it!
Watching the runner tracking, I knew when my husband would be finishing. Being at the Finish Line would be impossible, so I went to our designated spot (outside of gear check) and waited. I brought our big Ladybug sign, so he could spot me. Waiting....waiting....and enjoying the effects of my migraine medicine.
And I heard my name being called behind me, it was my husband!
He has the biggest smile on his face, I have ever seen! He had just completed the coveted Dumbo Double Dare!
He finished in 3:06 and ironically, I finished in 2:06
Met up with special friends, Louie & Terri Perez
Ran into Joe Taricani (The Marathon Show & our Trooper gear vendor) and Eddie McCoy, fellow Trooper. Always great to see them!
I wouldn't of traded this weekend for anything. There were some race & expo hiccups, but every race has them. The weather was my enemy, but I believe all those months of training made my body stronger, so I could get through the Half without too much discomfort.
I can't wait until 2014. I am doing the DDD again and hubby is still thinking (I think he will)
When I look at the photos, I have one favorite and I am not even in it. It's my husband during the Half with Hook and Smee. Peter Pan and Wendy are in the background. He got his wish. He finally was able to meet his favorite DL characters.
Yea, it was a great weekend! Thank you Disneyland and runDisney!
(c) C. Ragsdale 2010-13
Run F.A.B. & Boston Strong,
Charlene L. Ragsdale - Las Vegas, NV
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RRCA Certified Running Coach, IFA Certified Sports Nutritionist & Public Speaker
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