I trained extremely hard and was very dedicated to this marathon. I have been going to the Champlain Islands since I was 5 ( a very long time since I’m now 55) and have recently wondered why I never signed up for this as I’m always up there for Memorial Day. This year was the year.. actually LAST year I signed up but couldn’t go as my daughter was very sick and on a ventilator in NYC. So I was dedicating this one to her! I WAS READY!!! When I heard the weather forecast I was a little worried because this only being my 4th marathon, I have never run one in the heat. As it turned out, not as hot as originally expected but hot for me. I was running a great 4:30 pace with (pacer) Jen all the way through mile 14.. she was fabulous!! Kept us motivated and was SO positive. 4:30 would have been a PR for me and I could feel it coming!
Well, the best laid plans as they say…at mile 15 I hit the wall. Yes, THAT wall. Not sure if it was the heat, but I honestly thought to myself, how will I ever get through the next 11 miles. I was devastated. I put one foot in front of the other and for 4 more miles all I did was pray…1 more foot…1 more foot. All of a sudden and out of nowhere a woman came up to me and asked me how she could quit this race. She was never going to finish. She was also looking to finish in 4:30! I said…here’s the plan. We will do this together! I wasn’t going to let her quit and not get that medal at the end! We both put too much effort into this to not cross that finish line. So I found a new running buddy for the duration of the marathon.. we laughed, we shared stories about running, our families, our aches and pains and yes I even cried. We walked, we ran…we plodded, and for all those WONDERFUL miles, the crowd cheered us on saying how GREAT we looked…and WE DID LOOK GREAT. It took us a long time, but I found a new friend and we held hands crossing that line….RUNNING!
As I type this, I still get goosebumps. This was an amazing moment for me and I will never forget Jodi.. Coincidence? I don’t think so! Thanks Jodi.. for my medal too and to know what it really means to be a runner!