That’s right, 13.1 miles x 2 people = Marathon for Pat completed and covered in prayer.
Thank you to all those who supported us and prayed throughout our training.
Friday we visited some very loving, giving friends who took care of us on our trip to Greensboro. It was precious time to sit on a couch after good pizza and watch an old man on TV making a commercial for a local restaurant, as we alternated thoughts about sleep and 13.1 miles in the morning.
It’s interesting how two people can have different reactions to the same stimulus, and how thousands of people prepare the day of a marathon/half-marathon. I did not exactly know what I was getting into, as this was my first time running this long and my first time running this long in a race. I was more of the excitement and motivation, while Stephen was the one to keep us going strong and steady. We took a bus to the start line at 7:50am, in 32ish degree weather. The race started 8:45am. Fifty-five minutes left us time to go to the bathroom twice, find safety pins, shed the extra layers, meet some awesome runners, and warm up. I went with short-sleeve, long-sleeve, and bigger long-sleeve, with adidas soccer pants, socks from last Christmas, and Stephen’s wool socks as mittens. A few things we learned as newbs: bring some kind of ear-warming garment, wool socks are GREAT mittens, bring your own safety pins.
We lined up for the race in the back half after deciding it’s better to not get the fast ones upset having to go around, and it’s really fun to slowly pass people. Like any long race, mentally I pretend the first eighth of the run is a built-in warm-up. We had no shame in stopping at a porta-potty within the first 3 miles. By mile 7, we were half way done and had started the second half as if it was a new race. By mile ten, we were getting tired, but I was feeling accomplished- a sprinter running double digits! The last mile was the longest and the hardest. My chip fell off with 0.25 mi to go, so we picked it back up and pulled through to the end.
Stephen was amazing. I have never seen someone run as consistently as he did. He was a champ.
Our gracious friend took some pictures of us at the end. We crossed the finish line, but it was one of those times when you think, “Could this really, actually be the end?” After 13.1 miles, I went another 10 feet after the finish line, to make sure it was finished. We celebrated with a fajita, bagel, granola bar, banana, water, and a stomach ache.
The completion of this race is a testimony of God’s greatness and hopefully an encouragement in Patrick’s healing and recovery. My God is a God of compassion, power, and unending love. I am joyfully His.