Thursday, January 31, 2013

Disney Marathon Part 2: The second 13.1

If you didn't read my first 13.1 miles, I highly recommend reading that first.. It will explain a lot that happened prior to this post.

So in my last post, we had just reached the halfway point. We were leaving Animal Kingdom and heading towards ESPN World Wide of Sports!!

It seemed like forever from Animal Kingdom to World Wide of Sports! It was about 4.5 miles, but in the heat, it seemed much longer.

During the course of the 4.5 miles, there were several quotes of encouragement and I really loved reading them.. It was great way to distract my mind, especially as this is a point where I started to see people throw up, walk and get defeated because of the heat.

 These are some of my favorite quotes! I love them! It was great to see them along the way.. Such a great idea.. Disney does think of EVERYTHING! It's the details of this race, that makes it!


Just running on the highway.. Not looking at anything speculator.. 

Finally, we see the sign for World Wide of Sports and then I know we are getting closer to Hollywood Studios and Epcot for the finish! We are reaching about mile 16 and only 10 more miles to go.. The thought made us exhausted, so it was 10 minutes of running and 30 seconds of walking that kept us going.

Drew ready to get to World Wide of Sports!

 We enter the World Wide of Sports and I can feel my gut getting sick. I can sense the dehydration(I'm not sweating anymore) and  my brain is getting delirious with confusion. The heat is setting in, I need to find a bathroom and I'm going to get sick.

We entering the stadium area and it was great to run on the gravel
It was a nice break for the feet.

I knew I needed to find a bathroom and I had to get through the complex. The gravel felt heavenly on the feet, surprisely at this point.

They announced both of our names at this point, which was pretty cool.. We both were excited about that, but we had to keep hauling..

 As we continued forward through the baseball field, I saw the most amazing thing.. It brings tears to my eyes just thinking about it..

As respect to the participants,  I did not take photos, but have to share this story with you..

A young man was leading his blind father through the course. It was amazing. These people were hauling too. The young guy had to be in his middle twenties and his father had to be in his sixties, but the two of them were doing it.. Imagine being blind and having your child lead you through a marathon?? Fantastic! I cannot believe the courage and determination of these two people.. It kept me going..

After we left the baseball field, I found a bathroom where my gut couldn't hold anything.. My husband got a nice break and was able to take off his shoes, but I knew this would not be good for our time. This was by the far the longest and worse bathroom trip, but NATURE calls people! 

 We entered the mile 20 area and I knew we were in jeopardy of being pulled off the course. These bathroom breaks cost us time and I was not about ready to give up.. We hauled to make up time.. 

Disney promised something cool for mile 20, I thought it was going to be a concert with a famous music group, but it was instead these Giant Puppets..





Tigger, my favorite Disney Character!
He was super cute!

We then were headed to mile 20, which is under this sign and only 6.2 to go! WAHOO!

Minnie saw my outfit and blew kisses at me.. It was so sweet... I want to stop and get pictures, but we were in jeopardy of getting picked up because my bathroom trip cost us a good 10 minutes.. We had to pick up our speed..

I was getting angry.. I did not come this far to get picked up!

We reached mile 21 and saw all of the buses lined up and ready to pick people up. Luckily for us, we were on track to finishing on time, but we didn't realize it then.

This is the part of the picture taking where it stopped and I got serious about moving as fast as my body could go.. We had to make it to Hollywood Studios and then once we made it there, it was getting to boardwalk where we couldn't get picked up by pacers.. You can't imagine the anxiety I was feeling, especially knowing that the heat, my bathroom trips and dizziness was causing us to slow our pace and risking getting picked up.

The anxiety was enough for me to suck up the pain and keep going.. I would not be a failure! We just kept running.

We entered Hollywood Studios and I have no pictures! As my husband said "it was do or die time." 

We were at Mile 23 and my feet felt awful. I was so dizzy and felt so disoriented. We kept going.. and going..

We finally reached Board Walk, which was very narrow and hard to navigate the people. It was very tight and you couldn't pass people. I was getting frustrated.. I wanted to be done because I was sick of heat, the people and my feet were dying.

After another 1.5 miles, we finally saw the opening to Epcot and I knew the finish line was only 1.2 miles to go..

 I had to walk in Epcot, I was getting so dizzy.. I needed to rest, so I could finish strong. I saw several people throw up and one person received medical attention. As soon as I saw that, I knew I had to get running again and focus my energy on finishing.. What energy I had left anyways..

We got running and people were cheering us on! It was awesome.. We saw and heard the gospel choir, I lost it.. I was in tears and couldn't believe we had made it this far. As I am posting, I am crying again.. If you have never done this, it is the best experience of your life. If you have medical obstacles, this is that much sweeter and it was especially for me.. We rounded near the finish line and I told my husband "Let's Gun it."

We took a video of finishing and of course me crying, but it needs some editing.. I will post it sometime soon.. 

We headed towards the finish line and I gave it everything I had.. I heard Jillian Michael's in my head saying "Finish Strong!" 

(The time on this shot is not correct0
And we did it!

My emotions were everywhere from excitement to pain and tearful that I had just accomplished the biggest thing on my bucket list!

As I reflect on this day, I am in awe of our journey, I am thankful for my husband, I am gracious for finishing and I am overjoyed that my body overcame a huge medical feat. Today, Epilepsy didn't exist, but a person with determination, sheer will power and a dedicated husband to making a dream come true.

This day was truly the most memorable day of my life and I am excited to see the new running journey adventure.


Britt said...

I love Drews face on the picture above where it says "and we did it"! He's totally crying! So proud of you!!!! I can't wait to see the video!

Sarah said...

;) in the video, I am hysterical !

Jogging on Coffee said...

I'm so proud of you for doing this in spite of everything you faced! Congrats :)

Unknown said...

Congratulations! What an achievement!