run, rest, eat, bitch, buy things, cross-train, blog, repeat.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Race Report: The Flying Pig Marathon

This is the post that I never wanted to write. And I certainly never dreamed I'd be writing it about THIS race. THIS race that I was in the best running shape of my life.

I'm not really ready/interested/willing to talk in great lengths about the race on here. Even if I was... there isn't a lot to say. I'm disappointed, pissed off, embarrassed, sad, and frankly, over it.

I'm not the type to wallow around in my failures, so, the idea of going into some melodramatic, detailed, woe-is-me race report kinda makes me want to vomit. But, I like you guys (most of you, anyway), and even though I'm kinda done talking about it, I feel like I owe you guys some sort of explanation. (And also, this way, instead of having 5 different conversations with some of you individually about this whole piece of shit race, I can just say it once and be done with it).

Sunday morning was perfect. I couldn't have asked for a better start to a race. The weather was brilliant, I wasn't nervous, I was in my proper corral about 30 minutes before the start of the race, I was hydrated, fueled, and mentally prepared to push and hurt and run the race of my life.

And despite the perfect conditions, by mile 17, I was done. And the hardest thing, the most gut-wrenching part of the whole miserable experience is that I can't place the blame on one thing. I can't say, Amy, by doing this, you royally fucked this race up. SO DON'T EVER FUCKING DO THAT AGAIN!

I didn't go out too fast and blow up. I didn't suffer some kind of awful injury on the course (thank god). The hills didn't off me (although, they sure as hell tried). I didn't get too hot. The race wasn't too crowded. I wasn't undertrained or overtrained.

And yet, I didn't finish.

What pulled me from the race isn't some kind of glorious, epic excuse... Nope, I'm not awesome enough for that. I had to quit the race because I was literally running my guts out. From one porta potty to the next. There is no way to sugarcoat this, so I'm not even going to try; starting around mile 7, I got an awful case of the shits. At first, I thought I'd just have to make a couple of stops and it'd be no big deal. Unfortunately, it got to the point where about a tenth of a mile after my last stop, I was looking for the next porta potty.

I don't think it was my dinner the night before, or my fueling the morning of. I wasn't dehydrated or experiencing heat exhaustion, I didn't have some kind of random stomach flu or bug. I just couldn't run without having to stop every 3-5 minutes to take a crap. I don't know what the hell my problem was, but my stomach was not interested in me running a marathon that day.

And so instead of finishing my 16th marathon. I DNFed for the first time.

Onward and upward. Or whatever.


chacha said...

Well, the shits is as good a reason as any to DNF. In fact, for me, it's probably one of the only reasons I would voluntarily DNF. You can't even slog through slowly if you're constantly having to find a portajohn. It makes it nearly impossible to finish.

Jill Mongene and Joseph Keisling said...

I hate that for you Amy. And, I'm sorry I predicted a slow time. I was there in IL on 4/28 and I sucked at my race too. I ran WAY slower than I was trained for...and I considered DNF and my friend told me "death before DNF" so I sucked it out and it sucked. UGH.

Sometimes we have it, sometimes we don't. Keep the prize and go buy something for yourself. You don't know me from ADAM - but I know you've worked hard and you'll get there.

Lynn Burnett is organizing a 12am 7/21 race - 26.2 come on and do it. I'm certainly going to because I have another FASTER race in me.

Sometimes, running is just stupid. I say it all the time.

Melanie said...

Oh goodness, I know how frustrating this must have been! And that's smart.. put it out there and now you can put it behind you and never talk about it again if you'd like. I hate that this happened, and I know it's got to be more than a little discouraging. But it sounds like you're in the right place.. be frustrated, and then put it in the past. Sometimes our bodies just do not cooperate... stinks it happened on race day for sure.

Carina said...

Man, that sucks. I'm sorry for you that it happened. And sorry that "the shits" is the honest explanation that you would feel compelled to share with anyone owed that degree of honesty (and honored that your blog is one of those places). I had a couple friends who ended up getting really hot that day. Take good care of yourself. That's the beauty and challenge of the marathon, right? So many things have to line up perfectly for it to be a good day! Sorry friend.

LAPT said...

I'm proud of you for not pooping your pants. But in general, I am proud of you always. I have a feeling you'll get your A-race. It's a let down after such a build up of hope and expectations, but you will get there and it'll be awesome.

Jason said...

Sorry to hear about the DNF. Just try to get past it (sounds like you already have) and aim for a comeback race. You are in "marathon shape" right now, so you could go out and really rock any distance 5K, 10K, 15K or 1/2. Find another race soon, like by this wknd or next. Go out there and really rock it, you'll be over the DNF just as soon as you cross that finish line. Just my 2cents.

Anna said...

Bless your heart, that's awful. I'm so sorry that happened to you. I kind of know a little bit how you feel. I trained for 6 months for my first marathon and ended up puking my guts out from mile 17 to the end. I have no idea why. I was trained well and it was a perfect day. I walked the last 3 miles and finished a full hour later than I expected. It sucks to work so hard for something and then have it all go to hell.

Anonymous said...

I've heard it said "you're never defined by one race." And we're not. It happens to everyone. Keep training, and get it done next time.

Meredith said...

Not every race can be "the" race. You'll get 'em next time Amy.

Anonymous said...

I know this whole thing has been ridiculously hard on you but I just wanted to say that I respect you for being so honest and not making up some lame-ass excuses for why it wasn't a good day. It just wasn't and you had poo issues. That's it. I know from your coach that you are already planning your next marathon. The next one will be a brilliant race, I"m sure!!

Katie said...

well, just, goddammit motherfucker. I'm sorry friend, but I will agree that you made ABSOLUTELY the right decision here. now start hunting for that redemption race :)

Carri said...

I had a similar experience @ the Rockford Marathon a few weeks ago. It was hotter than blazes and I was vomiting at mile 7. Then again @ 11. They let me finish the half but I was unable to complete the full. I feel your pain. I'm sorry you had to go through this. Thank you for sharing, and hang in there. :)