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Woke up at 12:15, and then about every hour after that. I didn’t feel nervous, just couldn’t settle back down to sleep. Not a big deal. I got up at 5:30 am to have oatbran cereal, with my usual additives; dried blueberries, crumbled pecans, cinnamon, cardamom, nutmeg, poppy seeds, and a ¼ cup of frozen blueberries, sugar. I made a big mug of coffee with fat free ½ and ½ and sugar. Mmmm, sugar <img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif"><br><br>
My SO got up with me and had his own breakfast, and I put on my running clothes, Enell bra, shirt, running skort. I put on regular socks and my old shoes, then my sweatpants and sweatshirt because the temp at the house was 39F. I was running the second half of the 2 person relay, but wanted to arrive early so I didn’t get all hinky wondering about traffic, etc. on the way to Burlington which is an hour drive with no traffic. OK, who am I kidding? There is no traffic in Vermont.<br><br>
We arrived in Burlington and found a place to park near the finish line at about 7:45am. It was much warmer in town than at our house so I ditched my sweatpants in my car, and changed into my running shoes. Grabbed my bag o’ stuff (bodyglide, running socks, tennis ball to massage my butt before running, etc) and headed for the starting line to see if I could find my teammate.<br><br>
It was a fruitless endeavor, but great to see all the people ready to go. We wandered down Battery St. to the first turn on the course to get a better view where there were fewer people standing. I missed seeing my teammate there, too. Then we scampered down to around 2.5 miles on the course, where I saw someone I used to work with, give him a high-5, and saw my teammate (who didn’t see me). Satisfied I would not be without a teammate we found the busses to the ½ way exchange point and after using the facilities and taking off my sweatshirt, settled in to wait. Saw a few people I know and chatted with Batman and Superman. Batman was the teammate of The Flash. Nice people, and The Flash is fairly speedy <img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif"> Batman is much more low-key than you might expect for someone with his crime fighting skillz.<br><br>
Changed into my Injinji toe socks (thanks Meri!) with thin Wright socks overtop. Tied my laces just right and rolled my butt muscles to keep the ITB happy. Slapped some bodyglide between the thighs. About 1.5 hours after the start of the race, I realized I needed to use the facilities again, and I’d better do it soon because my teammate would be along shortly unless things weren’t going well for him. I waited about 20 minutes more after that, and there he was! Grabbed the chip on its Velcro strap off his ankle and away I went.<br><br>
The first mile is easy, no hills and looking good for the camera (I hope) just after the exchange zone. Battery St. hill is the big one on the course, and not as steep as a hill I run while training, although a bit longer. I didn’t have any trouble with it, but I can see where a full marathon runner would not want to see it at mile 15.<br><br>
I was feeling good up through mile 16, then I started to get a bit of a stitch, but more like I had to burp or something, and I couldn’t. This was pissing me off but there wasn’t anything I could do about it. My time at mile 16 was 32:13-ish. I pressed my lap button a bit late, but basically on pace given my slowdown on the hill. I think it was after mile 17 that it started sprinkling. I was hoping for some more precipitation. Somewhere in the neighborhood off North Ave, I ran through the first spray from a nice person with a hose. The people along the route are really great about handing out drinks and other things as well as hosing people down if they want it.<br><br>
At mile 19, I started to get calf cramps. This was a bit soon. I had taken Gatorade and water at two of the stations before that, earlier than I had during my longer training runs, so I was surprised at the cramps. I had been sipping on the water and Gatorade as much as I could given my stitch, etc. Once I start to get cramps, they usually don’t go away, I stretched them out and kept going.<br><br>
A friend caught up to me, and we ran together for a while. I mentioned the stitch and she suggested we walk a bit, which we did, and I stretched my arm over my head to try to ease the tightness. It was more up under my breasts than where a stitch is, so I have trouble describing it. The stretching seemed to help. We started running again after about 30 seconds, and I told her to keep going if I slowed down. I didn’t want to keep her back, although she seemed to want to be there for me, which was nice. There was Gu at a station before mile 20 I think. I really have trouble remembering what was where. Either way, I grabbed some Gu hoping eating some of that would help with the cramps. Then some water to wash it down. Then some Gatorade at the next aid station. The cramps kept occurring and I kept stretching when necessary and drinking when I could. The rain started in earnest, ahhhhhh! Made it to the bikepath, and I knew it was an easy 4+ miles from there. I’ve run it before. Had a nice massive belch somewhere in there, apologized to runners nearby, but they seemed to find it amusing. It really helped with that stitch/not-stitch.<br><br>
If the cramps hadn’t been bothering me I knew I would have been able to go pretty fast since, other than the cramps, I was actually feeling really good. I didn’t feel hungry or anything. There were several people having cramps along the path at that point. One older man who had to stop dead in his tracks (not literally, don’t worry) and had wicked charley horses. I could see his muscles tightening while he was standing there. I massaged the one that looked the worst, while another runner was talking to him. Neither one of us was in a big hurry at that point. Then they started walking and I continued running. We passed each other several times because we both had to stop for cramps more than once. I lost count of how many times I had to stop to stretch after that. Stupid damn cramps!<br><br>
I think at or before mile 24 we saw a man down with an IV in him and the emergency people just arriving. Poor guy! I think he ended up being OK, although I never hear any local news, so I don’t know.<br><br>
The rest was downhill, got some beer just before the cemetery, I think. Chatted with another runner doing the 5 person relay, so she was running the last 5.6 miles, but she had never run more than 3 miles before so she was walking and running. With my cramps we stayed pretty even the last few miles. I saw my SO as I was starting the last 4/10s and had to stop to stretch <img alt="rolleyes.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/rolleyes.gif"> he asked if I was OK, and I said “Sure, just stretching the cramp”. Saw my teammate about 1/10 after that, and all I could say was “Cramps!” I was a freakin’ broken record. Stretched several times after that. There were far fewer spectators than usual due to the rain, but each time I had to stretch they were encouraging me to keep going (as if stopping were an option, hah!). I ran across the finish line with cramps so I suspect the photo is going to be god-awful. Heh! That doesn’t bother me nearly as much as the poor performance.<br><br>
Gah! I finished in 2:45 (I think) and that is 25 minutes (25!!) longer than I wanted to take. I am disappointed in my performance, but glad I ran it for the experience. Now I just have to figure out what I should do to keep the cramps at bay. I foresee several more long runs in my future to work on this. I must say running that distance, with a lot of people and spectators, is actually easier than running alone, for me. It helps the time pass faster and I find more things to occupy my mind . Hey, I might find that a full marathon isn’t such a strange idea after all…<br><br>
A huge positive out of this run is that my ITB did not give me any trouble at all. I probably kept it happy with all that damn walking…
 

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Anything to make you happy! <img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif"> And you make me laugh!!<br><br>
Thanks, Bux! We'll figure it out sooner or later.
 

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Great race report, and I thought it was going to be an epic! <img alt="biggrin.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/biggrin.gif"><br><br>
Bad luck with the cramp, but it sounds like EVERYONE was suffering, well done to keep going. The next one wil be easy, think of the PB!<br><br>
Well done <img alt="notworthy.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/notworthy.gif">
 

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I think that was a lot of it. Like I got air when I was trying to drink earlier and didn't belch right away or something. The first belch was a relief. Maybe try my 4th grade belch by swallowing air and forcing it technique?
 

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Way to fight through the physical problems Gingerbread!<br><br>
I understand you feeling a little disappointed in that you didn't run it as fast as you'd have liked to, but some races are like that.<br><br>
I am willing to bet that things will go better the next time you try the half distance.<br><br>
And BTW....great report! <img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif">
 

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thanks for writing up the report! what an adventure, and you met Batman!!! wheeee!!!!<br><br>
have you tried my leg cramp remedy that i had at Umstead?
 

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G-bread rocks! Just finishing your first half marathon is a grand accomplishment. And the next half will be better, I'm sure of it. <img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif"><br><br>
Glad to hear the IT band didn't give you grief!<img alt="icon_cheers.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/icon_cheers.gif">
 

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Having to burp and being unable to is the worst feeling on a run. Except usually when it happens to me it only takes about 10-15 seconds for me to pop one out. I can't even imagine running for hours with that feeling. Way to be a trooper!<br><br>
You are so going to dominate that next half.
 

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<img alt="biggrin.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/biggrin.gif"> Gingerbread ROCKS <img alt="biggrin.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/biggrin.gif">
 

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I loved your report, and the Hairy made it even better! <img alt="biggrin.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/biggrin.gif"><br>
Good job, that is a very difficult course and you got the most challenging half. Congratulations. Take care of that calf.
 

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Great job, Gingerbread!<br><br>
Your report was a very good read. Get those cramps figured out and you'll fly next time!
 

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What, no skort?<br><br>
I was counting skorts out there yesterday. Saw six in total.<br><br>
Not enough.<br><br>
I was looking for you at the finish. Sorry we didn't meet. Nice report. Is a full in your future?
 

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Great job, Ginger! Remember, regardless of your time you still accomplished something a LOT of people wouldn't even think of trying. Each race is a learning experience. My two both were and I can't wait to get back into good enough shape to try one again.
 

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Oops, my bad. On second reading I see you did wear the skort. Now i'm really sorry I missed you!<br><br>
BTW: This Sunday June 3: Milk Run 10k, Enosburg Falls. Small race, 70 runners, few fast and most mediocre, fresh liquid manure wafting through your nostrils, watermelon and cow chip bingo at the finish. DW and I will be there. You better be too.<br><br><img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif">
 
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