Monday, September 16, 2013

Hitting the Wall- Disneyland Half

Disneyland is the Happiest Place on Earth! You would expect nothing less from their races! However, my story is a little different. It's not all fuzzy warms and PR's.   Sunday morning we woke up and were ready to tackle the Half! We had been training all summer despite personal health obstacles that tried to keep us down.

  I was ready to earn my C2C, Dumbo and my Half Medal! I couldn't wait and I knew the finish line was the place to get the BLING!

We lined up and after letting other corrals go, we were able to line up. Let's get this race rolling! See ya at the Finish line!

We started our journey down the streets of Downtown Disney.

 First mile marker sign that I saw..
 Heading into Cars land!! So stinking fun!
 Then the streets of California Adventure.
 Finally, heading into Disneyland! My favorite park in California!
 Sleeping Beauty's Castle!

And then, the adventure changed, COMPLETELY!


Once out of the parks, I HIT THE WALL!  COMPLETELY

As a runner, I have never experienced " hitting the wall" as awful as this moment was.

 At mile 4, I was done! Mentally, physically, emotionally- I was exhausted. I couldn't believe how much I wanted to walk off the course and be done. WHAT!!! Who is this? My feet hurt (PF) and my mind was telling me to quit. It was giving me all the reasons to stop.

As I tried to battle the thoughts and the pain, I wanted to stop. I was trying so hard to break through the wall. I was struggling to push through. Pictures stopped at Mile 4. I was so angry, I almost chucked my camera. I was not using kind language, my irritation was growing with each second and I DIDN'T WANT TO KEEP GOING.

How do you work through the worst wall in your life?? How do you keep fighting in hot temperatures and complete heartache? How do you fight?

You keep swimming!  
You put one fin in front of the other.
Yes, I said FINS! 
  Ok, maybe not fins, but feet.
That is what I did. We ran 10 mins at a time, with a 1 min walk break. We kept at this except for the last three miles. It seemed to break up the time and give me motivation. It allowed my feet the breaks it needed, it helped my mind and it seemed to go by faster.

I never did pick up the camera again. I couldn't bring myself to take pictures because I was just so frustrated and done. I knew I would be more angry at myself if I didn't finish and I knew I just had to work through it.  I have never had such a mental block in my life. It was paralyzing. THE WORST!

This race was harder for me mentally, than running our marathon. I had to keep going. I signed up for this on a snow day and convinced my husband after I had already registered him.  FAILURE WAS NOT AN OPTION.

We kept running. 
and running.
More running.
and then..

We entered ANGELS stadium and saw all the children, families and people, I knew victory was at our hands and we were going to make it.

At that point, the walk breaks ceased as I needed to hit the finish line or if I stopped to walk, I was done running. No pictures were taken. It makes me sad, but it was what had to happen for me to keep going.

As we proceeded closer and were less than a mile a way, my eyes began to water, I knew we were close.
Victory was mine. 
This victory was not just finishing a race and an inaugural challenge.

It was the story of my life.
It was the last 7 months of fighting.
Fighting Epilepsy.
Fighting Plantar Fasciitis.
Fighting for memory.
Fighting doctors.
Fighting prescription changes
Fighting prescription side-effects
Fighting exhaustion.

It was in those final moments running towards the finish line, I saw "hitting the wall" as the constant roadblocks that I was up against every day. It reminded me of how each day, I had to keep putting one foot in front of the other.

Each step, would eventually lead to the finish line.

I reached the finish line and was crazy exhausted, overheated, overwhelmed and filled with such incredible joy.

You are stronger than you think! If a girl with Epilepsy and Plantar Faciitis can run, so can you! Get off your BUTT and start running!

 I could have never gone castle to castle without my awesome, crazy and dedicated husband. Drew has been a constant support through every single up and down during this past year. My running journey is very unique and it wouldn't be the same without him cheering for me! I'm so blessed and thankful for him! XOXO


Two Runners Travel said...

Congrats Sarah, You truly earned those medals. So proud of your accomplishment with all the adversity you have faced this year.

Britt said...

Seriously Tears, Sarah, Tears! I was thinking about Drew by your side before you even got to the part about him! I'm sure it is not easy for him to watch the woman he loves struggle through that. Way to finish it no matter what! So Proud!

P.S. I may or may not have bought you something for a Christmas or Birthday present, or maybe just a way to go on this race present... you'll see when it shows up in your mail box I guess.

Krystle said...

You made me cry!
My first ever half is this Sunday. Last week after I upped my mileage I began to have horrible shin splints. I've been on a 10 day break and unable to complete my training.
Fearful or this Sunday and not being able to perform the way I want to (well and pain free). The last time I ran though this pain I got a stress fracture so I'm hesitant.....but this really encouraged me to do whatever I can do!

Good job girl!!!

Jenn said...

Congrats on finishing! And on pushing through and not listening to the voices. As runners, we've all been there. This was def one of the worst races for me too but I've had my 'wall' races where I just wanted to cry. Just know that around the corner is another race that will be SO much better than this!

mindy @ just a one girl revolution. said...

SO PROUD!! You inspire me, girl!

Sarah said...

You're comments bring me to tears. I'm so lucky to have such an awesome social-media community behind me. You guys are such inspiration! XOXO to all of you!


Ohhhhhh I read this just feeling your pain. I am so proud of you for finding the push! I hit the wall on my second half marathon and its no fun but to have this happen at the happiest place on earth, that really takes searching down deep!!!

Karen Seal said...

Way to go, Sarah!! You pushed through and totally showed the Disneyland Half who was boss! I'm proud of you!

Andrew Storm said...

Beautiful post. Running with you will forever be something I remember and cherish. I love you so much and am so proud of you!