When I got home yesterday, I saw that my boys had made signs for us while we were gone:
|This one is Eli's. Those are flowers, and a cookie, and a picture of me running|
and him holding a sign that says "Go Mama Go"
|This one is Noah's. Flowers, a cookie, and even my blog address ;)|
I immediately took a shower to wash all the salty sweat off my skin, and I felt a thousand times better. I put on some cozy pants and my new sweatshirt that I bought at the Expo, and sat to write my race report. While I was typing, I had one of the treats that Rik brought with him from Wisconsin--a peanut butter cup from a sweets shop near his house.
Saturday was the last day of my six-week challenge of not eating peanut butter, so yesterday was fair game. It was fantastic! I savored every bite of it. I think I forgot to mention that I also had one with breakfast before the race yesterday. I've definitely missed peanut butter, but I don't plan on going crazy with it now that the challenge is over.
After I typed up my blog post, Rik, Cynthia, and Angela came over to celebrate with me. As they were coming in, I heard someone say "Congrats!" and I looked up with shock--it was my brother Brian and his girlfriend Becky! I was so happy to see them--Brian wasn't able to come in for my race, but I think it was even better that he could come celebrate afterward. Apparently everyone knew he was coming but me--I was definitely surprised, and very excited.
My little brother Nathan came over as well, and then my mom, so we had a full house. We ordered a ton of pizza and breadsticks, and had plenty of beer to go around. We also had some of the snacks Rik and Cynthia brought--cheese and sausage (yum!) and the cookie cake from Angela that I was dying to dive into.
I ate two pieces of pizza, two breadsticks, a piece each of cheese and sausage, and a big slice of cookie cake. My mom brought over apple pie and ice cream, but I was pretty full and didn't have any of that. A couple of hours later, I had a second piece of the cookie cake, and I didn't feel the least bit guilty about it. I also had 4 beers (they were the Labatt 52 calorie beers, so they
Renee and Jessica came over, and they brought me some yummy (yet healthy) treats--I was actually relieved to see something healthy after the tempting stuff I'd had. Renee brought some homemade soup, cookies, and wine; and Jessica brought a fruit tray--tons of grapes and strawberries. (Yes, I'm still hooked on grapes). Then Stephanie came over, and brought me a bottle of wine as a "thank you" for giving her my spot on Jessica's relay team! (I have some pretty awesome friends).Their team did really well, finishing in 4:20 ish. It was fun to visit with them for a little while and hear about the experience from their views.
I actually wrote everything down and tallied up the PointsPlus I ate through the whole day, and it was 99. I get 26 daily PP, so I used those and all of my weekly PP and most of my activity PP. (I had earned 29 PP during the marathon, based on the calories burned). I didn't feel like I went overboard--I wasn't completely stuffed or anything--but those PP added up quickly! The cookie cake was the heftiest amount of PP, which is no surprise.
But every single bite was totally worth it. And I didn't even get off track. I wrote everything down, and today I am right back to "normal" eating. Angela, Rik, and Cynthia all left this morning, so I am back into my routine.
My legs have felt pretty good today, surprisingly. I'm definitely sore, but nothing unbearable. My knee feels uninjured (yay!!) and I can sit and stand okay :) It felt so strange this morning that I didn't have to run--this is the first Monday in 18 weeks that I haven't had a run on the schedule.
As far as running plans in the future, I'm probably going to take a full week off, and then start training again a week from today. I have a 5K race in NYC on November 3rd, but I am just running that for fun, so there is no pressure (it will be too crowded to try and PR anyway). Then the next race after that will be the Ragnar Relay Florida Keys on January 4-5.
I'm not going to do any formal training for it, but mostly just run how it's comfortable to me--what I used to enjoy doing before marathon training. I'll probably do 3-4 runs per week: one long run, one speedwork run, and one or two short, easy runs. I think as long as I get in a long run of about 10 miles every so often, I should be fine for Ragnar.
I am starting to carefully plan and think about races for next year. I don't want to do a lot of races--I just want to pick ones that are really important to me, and focus on those without doing a bunch of others "just because". I don't even care about getting faster anymore--if I was focused on speed yesterday, to try and hit a 4:20 or 4:30 time, I would have missed some awesome moments that made the race enjoyable to me: looking around and enjoying the sunrise while I was on the Ambassador Bridge; running and chatting with my cousin Kaitlin, and Jessica; stopping for a minute to stretch my calves to make the race more comfortable; high-fiving kids and spectators along the course; and having lots of conversation with Rik.
I am definitely more concerned with having a fun, enjoyable race than I am with focusing on a certain finish time now. So that will come into play when I choose my races for next year as well.
Looking back on yesterday's race, everything went perfectly, and I couldn't have asked for a better experience. Yes, it was still very tough, but I don't think it's possible for a marathon to be "easy". I enjoyed it the best that I could in the circumstances :) And I got to eat two pieces of cookie cake!