12 January 2009

Walt Disney World Marathon Non-Race Report

After the 1/2 marathon, my feet were very torn up. When I finally took my shoes off, I was greeted by two very large, very painful blisters. When I got back to the Princess condo, I debated on how to take care of them. I couldn't really walk since the blisters were on the balls of my feet close to my toes. I gimped around and after my shower started doctoring them. Much to my dismay, nothing I did worked. Saturday evening, I ended up in Walmart, buying corn pads and waterproof tape thinking maybe, if I made some donuts, I would be able to relieve some of the pressure and be able to do a marathon the next day. I even tried popping them (gross, I know) but that didn't work.

On Sunday morning, I tried out my experiment. It actually worked on the right foot, but the left foot was even more painful. My parents and I headed out to the car and while I was hobbling down the stairs I kept thinking a variety of thoughts. Thoughts like... How am I going to do this? Can I do this? Will I be able to maintain a 16 min/mile pace? Should I go to the start? Will I even make it to the start? Is a DNS really worse than a DNF? What's the worse thing that could happen? Are the Mickey and Goofy medals worth this pain? It's just a blister. I can be tough and handle the pain of a blister. I'm not a quitter, how could this be happening?

When we arrived, our car was parked three giant Disney parking lots away from the runners area. I'd already taken my socks off because that felt better on my feet. My mom and I hopped out of the car and left my dad snoozing in the car. I started gimping along with my mom and was really struggling with the decision of what to do. My heart really wanted to race. I wanted to do the marathon. My feet were saying, "Hello...this hurts." My brain knew it would be impossible for me to keep a 16 min/mile pace. I'm not even sure I could walk a 20 min. mile. So, I stopped my mom and said, "I can't do this." She hurried off to the start and I trudged back to the car to hang out with my dad.

I'll admit that I was feeling like a total weenie. Who skips a race because of a blister? How could I be such a wuss? It's just a couple of blisters. My dad was actually very cool. Usually he's not so good with the comforting/sympathy thing, but he said, "You can only do what you can do. If you can't do it, you can't do it." So, instead of running or walking the marathon, I got to be a spectator.

It was really hard to watch and not be out on the course. It was especially hard to watch the finishers and see the medals. I was sad and frustrated and I couldn't believe that I couldn't suck up the blister pain long enough to just be out there. So, I did not start the marathon. I did not get my two medals. I didn't complete my 3rd Goofy Challenge. It sucks...but I guess that's life.


See You at the Finish Line said...

Hi AJ,
From my perspective you already have two MORE Goofy medals than most people will ever have! I know the last thing you wanted to do was be a spectator, but it was so nice to see you at the finish and have your gracious assistance as I moved through the area. That couldn't have been easy for you. Thank you for that. :)

P.S. I want to go back to Florida weather!

Stacey said...

I am sure your feet were very relieved. Besides you know you'll do it again next year. You've already ran way more than I ever will!!! I totally admire you!