I have to admit, that I was very nervous about this race. I was more nervous about this race than I was running the Los Angeles Marathon. I didn’t get to practice the course as much as I would have liked to, two months before the race, I had to have surgery to repair a hole in my sinus. The hole in my sinus, lead down to one of my teeth. When I had a tiny sinus infection, the infection traveled to my ear, but also traveled and infected my tooth which resulted in my tooth being pulled.
I had the absolute honor of running with some of the best people from Rundalay; Our team (in our run order) is the strongest people I know; Eloisa, Syzko, Nicola, Marisol, and myself. Running the brutal trails of Griffith Park at a sexy pace, I can do that. I do that for my long runs, how bad can it be?
I was really confused because the website said the race starts at 7am. I thought the relay was starting at 7am, nope, it was the 8k. Then teams in different divisions (which I didn’t know, I thought it was all one big pack. Learn new things all the time) were called to the start line. at 7:30am our division is called, and our first runner, Eloisa, is up. The horn sounds, and even though she was held back at the start line for a bit, she took that course head on and without fear. We waited at the baton exchange, we saw her coming down to exchange the baton, and then Syzko was off to tackle the course.
While out on the course Syzko had twisted his ankle on the last part of the course, but he came down that last bit of it strong and passed the baton off to our team captain, Nicola. Nicola is still recovering from an injury to her right foot. Nicola kicked butt out on that course, and as he came down the hill, she passed the baton on to Marisol who took off like Wonder Woman. Then it was my turn, and I was nervous, especially since I saw it was 12:25pm; the hottest time of the day.
I was waiting in the shade waiting for Marisol to come down the hill. I saw her coming, and I moved into position for her to smooth pass the baton onto me. The passing of the baton was smooth, quick and I was off. After two days in a row of Nike House of Metcon, I thought I would be dead for this run. When I started to run, my legs felt like cement, but quickly loosened up. I took the advice of my friends and took it easy during the first two miles, which were uphill. The heat was intense, very intense. I walked up the hill, and jogged on the straight flat parts. I was almost to the first aide station, and I just wanted to quit. The heat was bad, and I was feeling it. When I got to the first aide station, I got some electrolyte chews, Nuun, and water. An EMT also gave me a small bag of ice to take with me and a paper towel soaked in cold water for my neck. I felt better, and I continued on. It was all asphalt for about 1.3 miles.
I put the paper towel into the bag of ice, to keep it cold. I put ice down my bra and down my back to help cool me down. I tried to take it easy, so I decided I would run then walk, I figured doing intervals I would be ok. I was finally able to see the Downtown Los Angeles Skyline, and I knew I was almost to the second aide station. I was happy to see that view of Los Angeles, but the heat was worse and worse. I could feel the heat rising from the asphalt, combined with the high humidity, it was horrible.
I got to the second aide station, texted Marisol that I was there. I knew it was all downhill from there, and I had about another 1.2 miles left. I was drinking water, pouring water on my head, and just relaxing. I was keeping a runner in my sight the entire time, which helped to push me. Her name is Lilly and she is from London. She was extremely nice, and she asked me which way we go. I showed her and we were jogging together down the hill. We were talking and having fun. I had to fall back and start walking because my head started to hurt.
I continued to walk, but I ran as much as I could. I ran into four runners from Run the City, who asked me if I was ok. I honestly said no. At that point I was feeling slightly dizzy. Two runners stayed with me, poured water on my head and made me drink a Gatorade. We all got to talking, and I love talking to people. I love hearing people’s stories, and making friends. Once I saw the cages to the old Los Angeles Zoo, I asked if we could start jogging, I didn’t want to walk to the finish line. They both said once we get to the shade, they would jog to my pace. Ok, I’m down with that.
We hit the shade and I started to jog, I had to finish strong for myself and for my team. I saw Marisol, Juan and Syzko there. I was so happy to see them. Once I hit the grass I started running as fast as I could to the finish line. Once I crossed it, a volunteer came up to me asking me if I would write down my information and they would mail me my medal. I took the pen to write down my info, but I felt like I couldn’t catch my breath. I had my arm around one of the Run the City runners, and I wanted to cry. I couldn’t believe it, I did it. I finished. I didn’t quit. I literally wanted to cry so badly, but I was chocking back those tears.
I was sitting in the shade, being looked at by an EMT to make sure I wasn’t suffering from heat stroke and to cool me down. While I was talking to Danny, the EMT, I heard one of my team members ask where my medal was. I heard a volunteer explain that one would have to be mailed to me because they had overbooked the event. I spoke up and said that I’m ok with it, because I would borrow someone’s medal for pictures. Honestly, I didn’t matter to me, I know they’d mail me one.
Then, Nicola said that I could have her medal, and if they could mail Nicola a medal. She then put her medal on me, and gave me the biggest hug. I hugged back and started to cry. It touched my heart, I couldn’t hold back my emotions. Wendy got me cold water, Danny put a bag of ice on my neck, and Danny also told me that I have a slight sunburn. I was able to walk back to the team’s tent, and Wendy brought over two boxes of pizza. I chowed down four slices, while I polished off the Gatorade. I just relaxed for a bit, drank some water, and talked to my friends. I was so grateful and happy that they all stayed behind and waited for me. That also touched my heart, filling my spirit with love and happiness. I suffered from heat exhaustion during the race, but I pushed through and I brought the baton home for the team. This medal means so much more to me than any of my other medals, because Nicola gave me her medal.
The team was amazing, and I had fun cheering them, and all my friends (who were all on separate teams) on. We all listened to flashback tunes, sang along and danced. I had such a great time. When I look back on the race, I remember all the laughs, the music, and enjoying pizza with my friends at the end. The course didn’t kill my muscles as much as I thought it would, that is a bonus. I didn’t die, I didn’t quit and I finished the entire course. That’s all that matters. I had a great time.
After the Race
I came home, sipped on some Pedialyte, and went to bed at 8pm. I woke up at 9am Monday morning. Monday. I went to work, and during my shift I was feeling extremely tired, I was very confused, and even dizzy. I was confused while driving home after work. I had to back out of leading Yellow squad for Rundalay that night. I managed to make it home safely, I drank some more Pedialyte, and I went to sleep.
I woke up Tuesday morning and decided that I was going to stay in bed until it was time for me to get up and get ready for work. During my shift I was drinking water, coconut water, Body Armour, and Gatorade. I was going to the bathroom more, and I was finally hydrated. My confusion and dizziness were finally gone. I was still feeling very fatigued.
Wednesday I had called in sick from work due to my stomach cramping, and I had diaherra badly. I never got the rest I needed, and I never got to recover. When I called in for Wednesday, I also called in for Thursday as well. I stayed at home, drank water and slept on and off.
This was the worst I have ever felt after a run, and the worst I had felt during a run. All I can do now is recover fully from this, and come back strong.