“Lost and found: 1 pride”

I heard someone say this after the first loop at Brazos Bend; the guy was calling it a day and not continuing the race. I thought, man, that’s harsh. But…turned out to be more prides in that lost and found later.

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Let’s start from the beginning.

We left for the race site about 5:30 AM. It was early! And we were tired!

A long walk from the car to the starting line. We got all our gear on and ready to run.

It was humid!

As we started to run, we felt great, well, I felt great. The course was familiar and flat.

The humidity creeped up on us and I felt the heat..literally.

Our strategy was the same as the last race: run 5 minutes, walk 1 minute. We both weren’t looking at time or pace. Our watches’ screens were set to heart rate and we just ran.

I enjoy this park. We looked for alligators..actually saw some!

The first aid station came at about 5 miles or so. I ate an orange slice and tore open one of my Fuel 100 packs. I couldn’t stomach them…uh oh. My stomach had ached before, but I just thought it was nerves..

We kept going.

At the second aid station I tried to eat again. This time a pb&j. My favorite while running! Every bite I felt coming back up. Two bites and I had to put it down. I hoped that later I would be able to eat something.

At mile 13 I finally confessed to E that my knee had some pain. It had been hurting for a while, but I wanted to push through it. It was my left knee this time, on the bottom outside. Didn’t feel like anything pain I felt before.

We kept going.

We were finally finished with one out of three loops. I rolled out my legs. E ate and filled up our water. We were at this aid station for a while. I just wanted to keep going.

A little after mile 17, I broke down. Let me point out that up to this point I didn’t once cry, I didn’t once complain, I didn’t once say I couldn’t do this. But at this point, my knee was in a lot of pain, my stomach hurt, and everything else felt off.

E stopped me, massaged my legs and took my water pack from me. He is so sweet, y’all. I really didn’t want him to carry it for me again this time.

We kept going.

My knee pain became unbearable. We kept moving, but wasn’t running as much. We passed aid stations fully stocked with amazing foods and I couldn’t stomach any of them.

At this point we saw Rachel! So kind and sweet of her to make the trip out there to see us..she brought Yoshi and all kinds of food. I was seriously bummed I couldn’t eat anything!

We kept going.

Walking still. About 2 miles from the second aid station, we stopped to use the restroom. My eyes wouldn’t focus. I was dizzy. And now I was nauseous. While sitting in the compost, I started crying realizing my body wasn’t going to allow me to finish this race. These were new feelings for me. I have never had issues with not being able to eat during a race (granted, I am still new to the ultra world). I also have never thought about not finishing a race. Okay, I thought about not finishing many races but it wasn’t ever a reality. The reality hit. My body could not function on little food.

We kept going.

We had no choice.

We had to finish the loop we were on. This seemed to take forever! The route passed by the car, so I went there and E went to the finish line to grab our bag.

This was our first DNF.

We were off..headed home. Without finishing. Without the medal. Without my pride.

Not finishing sucks. This race was really important to me. I was really emotional about not finishing.

BUT even though we didn’t finish, we did put in a lot of miles and I learned a lot. I learned a lot about myself, my body, and E.

Sometimes things don’t work out how we planned. Life is crazy. Life is messy. Life is unpredictable. So that is life. You learn to go with it. Sometimes it’s a difficult thing to do. Sometimes you don’t feel very good about it. But it happens.

I know that I can run 50 miles. I will run 50 miles. I will run further. I will make it happen.

So on to the next one I go..

#bikerunicecreamlove

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