Sunday, December 6, 2009

A Hard-Earned Finish

Sometimes, the best strategy is simply to step back for a moment while you change your expectations, then lower your head, put your new plan into effect, and just keep going… Hi guys! Mark here, filling in for Wendelin as she takes an extremely well-deserved recovery nap after today’s event. I will say this right now: That girl is a trooper! Yes, I’m extremely biased, and yes, we saw others out there today who faced challenges of their own. (One poor woman went down maybe 50 yards in front of us, somewhere around Mile 23. Total bonkage – likely glycogen depletion and/or dehydration. We stopped for a second but some kind spectators were taking care of her.) But still, Wendelin has my admiration for hanging in there until the end, under very trying circumstances. She got very little sleep last night, and woke with a migraine headache. Luckily we got a ride to the start from some friends (thanks, Ellen and Stuart!) so we avoided some of the usual standing around in the cold & dark. The start was delayed ½ hr, and the sun was up by the time we got going. We took it easy during the opening miles, but even so, Wendelin felt whipped by headache-induced nausea by Mile 6. A bad sign indeed. (When training for a marathon, anything under maybe 12 miles is considered a short run, and we had a couple of recent 20-milers under our belts, so this was unusual for her to feel this bad so early.) Her nausea never got better, and as we approached the halfway mark I lobbied for her to consider stopping at that point. No way. So we pushed on. She had to make a couple of pit stops, and we did some walking near the end. (Her legs were fine, but the act of running made her want to puke. Not the best condition to have during a 26 mile race, to say the least!) But we eventually crested the last big hill and made it down to the coast and that beautiful finish line. (The finish line is always beautiful, but today it was doubly so.) Then we finally had some good luck. We had originally planned to walk back to our motel from the finish, to cool down (maybe 2 miles). But clearly that wasn’t the best plan, so I stuck out my thumb and immediately this nice couple with their daughter stopped and gave us a lift. (The woman was a participant also, so she took mercy on us.) Wendelin was sitting next to the daughter, who looked like the perfect age to be a Sammy Keyes reader, so Wendelin asked her if she’d heard of SK, and it turns out she's a big fan. The family was happily surprised to learn they'd given the author a ride. Totally cool. The young lady’s name was Lucia, and we want to thank her and her parents again for rescuing fellow runners (and readers!) in need. So, that was a bright spot in our day. And at this moment Wendelin is tucked in and sound asleep, with her shiny finisher’s medal still around her neck. I’d say she’s definitely earned the right to wear it…

11 comments:

xxCammyLoverxx said...

That sounds like fun! Its great that you guys do these! Wow, that must be a lucky girl =) And I hope you guys had fun and keep on running. =)

xxCammyLoverxx said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Wendelin Van Draanen said...

xxCLxx: Sorry you checked 77 times before something got posted! Now you know why... Thanks for wanting to know :-) It was absolutely not fun, though, until we hitched a ride. Feeling much better today, that's for sure!

Tracy Marchini said...

Go Wendelin!! :)

Helen said...

I can't imagine running 26 miles! I'm not the runner type! You deserve all the rest you need!

xxCammyLoverxx said...

Hey! Make sure to check out my Cammy blog sometime-- I have pictures of how I imagine Casey-- its perfect! Like, amazing. ;D perfectperfectperfect (for me). Tell me if you think he looks fine. I mean he's a couple years too old but he looks fine, just imagine him a *tad* younger. :)

Rachel Bird said...

Wendelin....you are FREAKISHLY STRONG.

xxCammyLoverxx said...

Today, I drew a giant C+S in the snow on my front lawn. Spontaneous, I say. Everything is complete.
PS- do you have an 'estimate' on when the book comes? Because I have a B&N gift card and I'm saving it for SK&theWC so I need to know the 'estimate' b/c my card will expire!
Guess whattt? Tomorrow=Sunday=New Blog post. =) And you should make a Twitter! I'd definetly follow you. :)

xxCammyLoverxx said...

Its Sunday! :D Yay

xxCammyLoverxx said...

I just posted a quick blog about Cammy and snow! Annnd I miss your blog updates!
Hope you had a good week! Happy holidays and Merry Christmas!
:)
xox xxCammyLoverxx

Wendelin Van Draanen said...

xxCLxx: I have checked it out, and think the boy you chose is dishy! I also love the new pix (with the Converse) and the book jacket. I also shared it with my editor, who loved it all, too, and sent it on to someone else! You do good "work" -- I'm glad you're you!