Sunday, September 29, 2013

One year ago today, I nearly retired my running shoes

It's hard to believe it has been a year since the Inaugural Walt Disney Tower of Terror 10 miler. It will be a race I will never forget for multiple reasons. So much has happened in the past year and looking back makes me realize how much I have accomplished, helping me through the negative thoughts that I deal with on a daily basis.
The 2012 Tower of Terror 10 miler was my first long distance run. Since the TOT started at 10:30pm, we trained at night after work to get used to running while being exhausted from the day. Nothing, and I mean nothing, could have prepared us for what we were about to experience.
There were three major issues which resulted to a bad ending of this race. We dressed up since it was a Disney race. Gabe and I were Jesse and Woody from Toy Story. I hated everything about our costumes somewhere around mile 3. My Jesse hat ended up in the trash and Gabes 100% shirt was quickly removed. We stressed out so much over what to eat prior to the race. I blame this partially on Keri, who is a control freak about doing everything by the book. I put too much different stuff in my stomach prior to the race (peanut butter and banana sandwiches, protein shakes, gu, all of which all followed a pasta dinner). The next issue was completely out of our control...but 80% humidity at 10:30 pm is NOT conditions you want to run in. This is one of the reasons runDisney moved the race up a year in 2013. It made for very difficult running conditions.

Result: Along with a reported 60% amount of participants, I got sick. Right smack dab in the center of Hollywood studios with no where to go. I found a trash can, hid behind and threw up everything in my body. All of the bananas, peanut butter, gu, even the pasta from earlier in the day. I left the park in a wheel chair because I couldn't move. I was utterly exhausted. Even worse, I got sick in the bus on the way back to our car. That was a huge blow to my ego.

This race almost ruined my running career and I wanted to quit running. If I thought I had self doubt prior to this race, what followed the months after was downright awful. I didn't want to train and I was afraid of anything over 8 miles. To make matters worse, My first Half Marathon followed a few months after and it was a total disaster. I went into the Disney Half in January with so much doubt and I didn't want to run it. To be honest, if my best friend and former roomate weren't running it with me, I would have deferred. Yet I crossed that finish line with a huge smile on my face with spirits lifted. I had to quickly jump back aboard the positive running train, knowing I had the Rock n Roll St. Pete Half, Rock n Roll New Orleans Half and Sarasota Half in a two month span.

So here I sit on the one year anniversary of the race that caused me to doubt why I lace my shoes up. I reflect at what I accomplished vs. what almost made me quit.

Five weeks from today, I will be running the ING New York Marathon. Am I stressed out? OF COURSE, it's what I do best.  If you are a reader of this blog, you are aware my training did not go as scheduled. I erased those hopes and dreams of crossing that finish line under 5 hours. Now, I can only hope and dream to finish it. I am also very sad because my parents were flying up and are now unable to be there. This will be an experience - what kind of experience is up to me. It can be an amazing experience or a bad experience. What I really hope is that my first full marathon will a once in a lifetime experience.

And the answer is no, I am not running the Tower of Terror 10 miler next week.

2 comments:

  1. Wow, Megan, that's an intense story. They don't call it the Tower of Terror for nothing! No wonder you were afraid to start training again! Anything that involves vomiting and wheel chairs would definitely scar me. You should be so proud that you're still running. I'll be rooting for you during the New York marathon!

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  2. Oh mannn....that was hard to read at points :( I'm so prous of you that you trooped through that crappy time of running hatred. Sucks your parents can't make it but seriously, I have so much faith in you. You are most definitely going to cross that finish line even if it takes you twice the amount of time you had planned. You'll feel so good about it once it's over and crossed off the bucket list.

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