Welcome to my race recap! Read Part 1 here, Part 2 here, Part 3 here, and Part 4 here.
Okay, so I crossed the finish line of my first ever marathon feeling like I'd just, well, run a marathon. As soon as I slowed to a walk my body was like, whoa there crazypants what did you just do and where can you lay down?
It's hard to explain clearly now, but I was feeling pretty out of it. Not only did my whole body hurt but my mind was also pretty muddled. It was what I imagine going into shock might feel like, in some small way. I didn't feel like I had control of myself, which was weird. I had been running for so long, my body mechanically doing what it needed to do, that when I stopped it was like everything hit me at once.
Someone put a medal on me. I was so relieved and happy and kept being on the verge of tears.
Luckily, someone grabbed me right away and asked me if I wanted ice. My brain could at least comprehend that this was a good idea so I followed this woman over to a bench where I sat down. There, she carefully wrapped bags of ice around each of my knees. I remember this older guy sitting next to me with long hair and a long beard who told me he liked my sleeves. I was wearing bright neon yellow arm sleeves!
I knew I needed to keep moving, so I walked gingerly out of the icing area and continued through the herd of finishers. People were passing out foil blankets and I took one but didn't have the wherewithal to do anything with it other than let it sort of trail behind me like I was Linus dragging his blue blanket. Suddenly an older man appeared in front of me and said, "You look like you could use some help!" As I kept murmuring thank you over and over and of course felt like I was holding back more tears, he carefully tied the blanket around my shoulders, double-knotting it. The cold was starting to hit me now that I wasn't running and I was so thankful to have another layer!
So now with my medal around my neck, a blanket around my shoulders, and ice packs around my knees, I hobbled further on to pick up a sports drink, water bottle, and official runDisney snack box. I found a spot on the ground and gently eased myself down, unable to bend my legs too much yet. It felt so good to not move!
When I opened my box of food, I zeroed in on the salty tortilla chips and cup of fake cheese. That is not usually the kind of thing I go for but when I saw those suddenly they were everything I wanted! I started feeling more like myself after sitting for a bit and when my friend joined me we hung out for a while longer until we felt like standing and then headed out to continue with the rest of our day.
We iced more at our hotel room (and inhaled some cold leftover pizza), took showers and got ready, and then headed to Disney Springs for the evening! The best decision we made was to keep moving throughout the rest of the day. Easy walking around the shops kept our legs moving and I think it definitely cut down on soreness. We also wore our compression socks.
After that, it was a crazy couple of days in both the Magic Kingdom and EPCOT. Visiting Disney World is exhausting even if you haven't just run a marathon, but man is it worth it. We had the best time and made memories that I'll always hold close. Oh, and you KNOW we wore our medals every single Disney day!
Running the Disney World marathon was the culmination of so much hard work. I loved sharing the experience with my friend and I love the satisfaction and pride of earning that medal.
Here's to many more racing adventures in 2017!