Sunday, October 18, 2009

Mount Desert Island Marathon

Totally untrained.
....and when I say "totally" I mean TOTALLY. 
I knew I'd be walking most of this.

Jon, Dad and I flew into Portland and drove up to Bar Harbor to the rental house that Heidi found for us (she was supposed to race also but ended up having to pull out).  There was absolutely no cell service anywhere near the house, nor any internet, but otherwise was a cozy little place (read: next time, do the proper research and find house with proper amenities).

Since I was planning on walking most of the race and wanted the extra time, I elected to start the extra hour early with my dad and the rest of the walkers.  It was *freezing* when Jon dropped us off!!!  One thing I can say is that this course was by far the most beautiful.... and hilly and windy, but I was able to put some of that aside to enjoy the mountains and changing leaves.  I was pretty much running the downhills and walking everything else and then somehow started keeping pace with this girl.  I'm all for meeting new people and having race company, but this ended up being the most obnoxious thing as she wanted to keep stopping for pictures, bathroom breaks, this and that... and I felt guilty about the idea of leaving her behind.  Really, I was in no hurry, but at the end of the day I wanted to be moving forward at all times at least making progress and the frequent stops really irritated me.  My dad was well ahead of me and the miles kept creeping along.  At some point the runners started passing and the course grew a little more crowded.  These were seriously the biggest hills ever!!

I finally broke away from this girl for the last few miles.  So much time had passed already that I was just ready to be done.  About a mile or so from the finish, I saw our rental car and knew that Jon was at the finish already, probably with my dad.... and I wondered why he'd park so far away?  No way I was walking back to that car where it was!!!  The finish line was still up when I finally crossed, completely relieved to be done after almost EIGHT HOURS on that course, partly due to sticking with this girl the whole time, but also my lack of training is very much to blame.  Dad and Jon were there and were ready to walk to the car.  Um... are you kidding me?!!  I could not walk one more step and promptly sat on the side of the road where I told them they could find me.  An officer directing traffic took pity on me and asked me to describe the car so that when it pulled up, he'd allow them to come on the closed portion of the road so I didn't have to walk.  Awesome... except Jon had his own plans and veered off into an earlier parking log.  Seriously?  I don't know why these people thought I was going to walk anymore!!  The officer ran after the car, found Jon and told him to drive the car up to me.  I must have looked really pathetic but was VERY thankful for that officer.

Back at the house, navigating the stairs was challenging, but luckily the soreness wasn't completely horrible the next day and we were all able to go exploring in Bar Harbor, enjoying a nice lobster dinner.  Definitely the perfect time of year to visit the area.