Monday, May 4, 2009

Mini-Marathon and Port-a-Potty Parable

I finished!

The weather turned out to be PERFECT running weather on Saturday - about 50 degrees and cloudy at the start. I woke up, had my go-to long run breakfast (banana + PB + SF Red Bull) and was off.

(Me pre-race. Like the ladder in my bedroom?)

I didn't allow myself enough time and ended up parking about a mile away from the start line. I had to go to the bathroom (of course), but as I was waiting in line for the port-a-potty, I was worried I wouldn't make it to my corral in time. So I decided I would either stop along the way at a port-a-potty, or try and suffer through it.

The race began and I felt great the first few miles. Maybe I can make it the whole way without going to the bathroom, I thought. I was just mad at myself because I made it through one of my full marathons without stopping to use the restroom, and here I had to go at mile 2!

I kept a lookout for the port-a-potties. The first few had long lines, so when I finally found one at mile 5 without a line, I made a mad dash. I went into the 2nd or 3rd one and quickly ran inside (and, of course, tried not to breathe). Of course the door wouldn't latch shut! I wanted to get in and out as quickly as possible because we all know races are won and lost in the pits. lol.

Sorry if this is TMI, but I had to share as this is SO something that would happen to me. I decided to hold the door with my hand and PRAY that no one try to open it. I'm going, and towards the end I think, hmmm, my sock feels kind of wet. WTF? Um, I look down and the lid was closed! So, yes, it was overflowing and landing on my sock. Ew ew ew! Well, I wrapped it up and as I pull up my pants, a guy opens the door on me JUST in time. Phew! But I hightail it out of there because I wanted to die of embarrassment. :-)

Moral of the story? Yes, I was in and out of there in 50 seconds, but next time? Make sure the lid is open!!

I did feel MUCH better after stopping. I was averaging about an 8:15/8:20 pace and felt really great. I really tried not to think about what my projected time would be until around mile 10, when I knew I could come close to matching my PR.

At Mile 11, my watch time said 1:30:xx. I knew this meant I had to bust it out in the last two miles if I wanted to beat my PR. I had a lot of energy left - I was really surprised! Must have been the fact that I wanted to get out of my socks immediately.

At Mile 12, I knew I'd have to get under an 8 minute mile. I didn't want to push myself too hard - I'm scared of speed because of all of my hip trouble. But I sprinted it out, and ended up finishing in 1:46:15! A new PR!

Tears welled up in my eyes as I crossed the finish line - not only because of my new PR, but mainly because I was so thankful to be able to run again. I know I've said that many times before and sound like a broken record, but the year without running for me was so incredibly difficult emotionally. Now I finally feel like myself again when I lace up my shoes and head out to pound the pavement.

I ended up heading down to Louisville for a Kentucky Derby party later that day and whew, I was tired! I wish I had pics, but let's just say I did my part in stimulating the economy through alcohol sales.

Of course yesterday I had to treat myself to one of these bad boys from Dairy Queen.

Be still my heart.

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend!

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Missy said...

Congrats on finishing! That sucks about the port-a-potty!! I had a horror story over the summer. Let's just say my sweat shirt dipped in the toilet! So horrible haha but at least you got through it!

Anonymous said...

Aww, sorry about the port-a-potty incident! Way to go though with the rest of the race!!

Anonymous said...

Awesome work Holly! Maybe you should pee on your sock every race. :)

Anonymous said...

That port-a-john story was fabulous. One that only a long distance runner can truly appreciate because could happen to any of us! All you think about is "be as quick as possible!"

And how amazing is your probably never thought you would have another PR like that. It is amazing feeling to know YOU ARE BACK!

I keep hoping I'll get there but the time/commitment/obsession that comes with long distance running sort of scares me.

Happiness Awaits

Nicole said...


I'm cracking up about the pee situation ROFLOL!

I seriously had to PEE the entire race. Did i stop? NO. Should i have? Yes because i probably would have ran faster.

Not to mention my idiot self didnt ever take a gu or sport beans. STUPID! *kicking myself*

I should have found you and we could have ran together! I needed support the last few miles. I'll say from 10 on. My last mile was 9:4X FAIL. I was so ready to quit it wasnt funny.

NOT to mention after I FINALLY crossed the finish line i walked back to the hotel and didnt eat anything for a while *another idiot move* then i ate some chips *wow i think i'm getting more stupid* and ended up throwing up and spending most of the day sick as hell in the hotel.

Wow i'm a genus. I cant believe we both had the same bathroom situation... HA HA HA. you probably heard the same lady i did standin up in that tractor thing yellin at everyone!

GREAT job and CONGRATS on the pr!!!!!

Nicole said...

and i spelled genius wrong.

double fail!


Anonymous said...

Great job Holly!! I've never had to use a porta potty at a race but I will keep that in mind, as I'm sure I'll have to at some point!! :) That's hilarious. I'm so proud of you for setting a new pr! You are very motivating to me!! I can't imagine having to take an entire year off of must feel so amazing to not only be able to run again but to achieve new goals you set :) Way to go!!

Erica said...

ah! You rock AGAIN for finishin and doing so well. That story about the port-a-potty is HILARIOUS! Whatever- don't be embarassed...its such a good story that you will have with you forever :)

kristen said...

I'm sorry, but I laughed out loud when I read about your port-a-potty fiasco! Who closes the lid to a port-a-potty?? Why touch anything unnecessarily in there?? Strangely enough, the same thing happened to me. I remember feeling something on my leg, so I jumped up and looked down and saw the black lid CLOSED.

More importantly, CONGRATULATIONS on your PR! You did so awesome. You're really an inspiration - I wasn't feeling too amped up about going for my run before, but now I'm looking forward to getting out there and pounding pavement! :)

Holly said...

Thank you, guys! You are all so sweet. And hopefully none of you lost your breakfast while reading my pee story. I just had to share. :-)

Anonymous said...

oh no! soooo sorry about the bad bitof luck wiht the potty! but congrats about finishing the rest of the race! I am such a baby I think I would just start crying!

HangryPants said...

Congrats on the PR! The bathroom story made me laugh!!!

Amy said...

OH MY GOSH, that is an awful port-a-pot experience!! But it makes for a good story afterwards, lol. I could totally see that happening to me.

Anonymous said...

I think I'm just checking you out for the first time, but I LOVE your race recap! Way to PR, and I SO understand about being able to run again. I think I am going to circle October 30th on my calendar, because that is the day I will be able to run again!

I will be back (to your blog...but running too, I guess), mark my words!