The big weekend of the goal race arrived at the end of October. It was exciting to be completing it after all the time thinking about it. As much as I wanted to make my goal time, really any of my goals, the 60 degree start with temps reaching a high of 81 during the race were the exact opposite of what I needed in order to succeed. By the time I made it to the bridge, I had nothing left to give. Between getting to the race early to get checked in and having to wait in the dark and cold until the sun came up, and then standing in the corrals for over thirty minutes before getting to start the race, and the temperature, it was a recipe for disaster. By mile 18, the famous “Beat the Bridge” marker in the marathon, I was ready to stop running all together. I ended up walking the rest of the way. It was a special challenge. I started chatting with another participant, Janine, and she and I walked a couple of miles together towards the end. At one of the aid stations they had run out of cups so I got a gallon jug that was about 1/4 full and carried it the rest of the way.
Regardless of how challenging I found the race to be, it was still amazing to be a part of it. The blue mile was inspiring and sobering. The race highlight for me was seeing one of the men who was paralyzed using an exoskeleton technology that helped him walk finishing the last 6.2 miles of the marathon. It was truly humbling.