So, the good old runningburro beat me to the punch in posting on the race from this weekend.
I, however, have PICTURES.
So. The important thing to remember about this race is: 1. Being on your period does not mean that you cannot run races, 2. If you are hit and killed by an errant black SUV on the course, your student loans WILL BE FORGIVEN, and 3. All nouns can be verbs.
On #1: [FAIR WARNING: #1 offers detailed discussion of running a marathon while menstruating. Please skip to #2 if you are faint of heart or are easily grossed out by the term “feminine napkin. Proceed at your own reading risk.]
The careful dosing of Motrin to alleviate the excessive cramping that accompanies the monthlies actually helps a runner in that it may alleviate other pain in other places. Note here that I say “careful dosing.” This means that you not only must dose the night before, but also mid-race. AND while you’re dosing mid-race, be careful not to also dose the lint that might try to steal its way from your Nathan pack to your mouth. Because lint will make you gag and require you to stick your tongue out at an entire water stop full of volunteers.
Also, if you are of an unfortunate population of women who are limited in their use of feminine accoutrement, please make sure you pack vaseline in your Nathan. The repeated scraping of a “feminine napkin” on the sides of your legs will start you bleeding in other places unless you have a plan to reduce said friction. Also, even if you ARE willing to dip your mitt into a vat of community vaseline and swab your privates in public (as I gleefully was around mile 6), the damn water stops will probably not have said vat of community vaseline (even though it was PROMISED). Further, if you are running hard enough, as it appears Rb and I were, you might find that you actually STOP bleeding altogether, and that you can remove said napkin around mile 16.
On #2: If you are ever a motorist who happens to be driving through or past a race-in-progress, please remember this: your frustration in being held up is much easier to deal with than a murder charge, so please suck it up and drive AROUND the runners. To the driver of the black Durango who nearly killed me at the mile 4 water stop: next time watch the F out. I was wearing an orange shirt for pete’s sake. And yes, I understand that if I die now I will never have to actually write a dissertation, nor will I have to repay my student loans (and I would of course appreciate being absolved from both duties); however, I do have 3 children, a husband, and a TEAM YONKER that would certainly avenge my death.
Also, if a runner is walking out into traffic in front of you, waving her arms and flagging you down, it’s not because she’s running a car-jacking ring. It’s probably because she needs help (if she didn’t she’d still be running, duh!). All we need you to do is drive to the next water stop for us to let someone know to send help. We don’t want to actually DRIVE your car or catch a ride or anything.
On #3: Around the halfway point, I ask Rb: “Are we Gu-ing before the next water stop?” Yes. Eating a Gu is gu-ing. It becomes a verb, and one of my favorite things to do is make nouns into verbs. But this also leads me into what I think is probably one of the most important details of this race: every time Rb Gu-ed, so did I. I asked her before every stop: “Water? Gatorade?” and whatever she ate/drank/did, I did. She had a plan, man, and it totally worked.
Even though it was supposed to rain. Even though our hotel room had cinder block walls (IT DID. WE ARE CHEAP, K?). Even though our pre-race dinner was not pasta, but instead an ill-chosen unearned Ponderosa (and it was gross. never eat at the Ponderosa in Bath, NY). Even though I was a cramped, bleeding mess. Even though.
I finished in under 5 hours.