This marathon was my best friends, Ashlie, marathon. I wanted to run it, but with it being 3 weeks after Boston I was going to see how I felt. I planned on going no matter what. 4 days after Boston, I had a very bad bruise behind my leg just above my knee. It was from a hamstring. I was freaking out that I tore something and would not be able to train for my goal marathon, Chicago. I saw Ashlie’s husband, whom is a chiropractor and in 2 days my bruise was gone. YAY. I also waited 6 days to start running again, which is the longest post marathon I have waited. I started short and slow. My hamstring was very tight. I iced, rolled, and stretched. I ran a 12 miler the week before Wisconsin and felt good.
2 days before the race, I signed up. My plan was to run friend to a huge PR. On Friday, I ran some errands and went to the chiropractor. Ashlie, the girls, and I road tripped it to Kenosha, Wisconsin. I beautiful little town 1 hour North of Chicago. It took us about 4 hours. When we arrive, we checked into the hotel and walked to pick up our bibs. After that we went to an Italian restaurant across the street from our hotel. It was amazing and so much food. We headed back to the hotel to put the littles to bed. Ashlie and I moved all of our running stuff into a tiny bathroom to get ready for the next morning. Our husbands arrived around 10 pm and lights out.
4:30 am – wake up call from my little. She was not sleeping any longer. I got ready and headed down for breakfast. I ate a bagel. We walked to the start line at about 6 for a 7 am start time. The sun was already high in the sky at 6 am and there was not a cloud in sight. I was warm and only going to get warmer. Hit up the port-a-potties. I lined up with Ashlie. She kept insisting to move up to the front. I wanted to run this one with her. I did not care about my time. I wanted to PR in the 25k I am running the next weekend. She started really strong. She was averaging 9:30’s for the first 7 miles. She got really hot and her body was not liking it. She told me she was going to start walking and to go ahead. I went ahead. I did not want her worrying about me and just run her race. My plan when I parted ways was to run by feel. I was not going to push my pace. Remember- I want to PR in my 25k in a week. I did not want to be sore for days. I was running 7:45-7:55. I was feeling really good. The miles were just flying by. We started with the half marathoners and just after mile 12 we spilt. The runners decreased by a lot. I continued to just run and not worry about time. At mile 16, there was a gravel road. I said some cuss words and wondered how long we would be on it. Well, it was about 1 mile. Off the gravel road to a paved road for a breather back on to a different gravel. I do not run on anything but road. I was not happy. It was already almost 80 degrees. I was started alternating taking water and Gatorade at the aid stations. After mile 16, I was grabbing a water and Gatorade. I was still feeling good. We finally turned around just after mile 20. Home stretch. The last 6 miles just flew by. At one point, I was running faster than the ambulance that was taking someone off the course because there were runners coming in both directions. I made it to the finish. Grabbed my little and crossed the finish line with her! 3:41:56!
This course was a little strange. You ran south along Lake Michigan and looped around in a neighborhood around mile 4. We went past almost where we started and headed North and back to the start/finish line. The marathoners got back on the first stretch of road and continued to run past that neighborhood about 5 ish miles and turned around and went back to the finish. It is a smaller marathon race, but there were a lot of half marathoners. There were not many spectators from mile 16-23. The volunteers were great! If you are trying to get marathons in different states, I would recommend this one for Wisconsin. I love the beautiful views of Lake Michigan throughout the course. Cheers to Marathon #17!