First I want to say THANK YOU – committing to running a full Marathon is not easy and y’all have been incredibly supportive! Every encouraging comment, message and call meant the world to me! Blood, sweat and tears went into training for the Dallas Marathon for 5+ months, getting through the early wake up calls, long runs, blisters and everything it feels like a dream to say – we did it! Now, I want to encourage you to follow your dreams (weather it is a 5k, 26.2 or anything else!) by sharing my Marathon story, answering questions and giving a few tips!
running belt // nike hat // hoka running shoes // nike bra // lululemon tights // nike tank // balega socks // bose headphones
I told myself last year that if I could run the BMW Dallas Half Marathon in under 2 hours, I would sign up for the full Dallas Marathon the following year. 1:57:03 was my time that day. After running 4 Half Marathons I was ready for a new challenge. I decided to sign up for the full this Summer and give it a go. If you are thinking of running a Marathon, I highly recommend going for it!
If you wake up early enough, there is always time for a run!
What training program did you follow?
Can you share your Marathon Playlist?
What was the most difficult part of training?
As far as injury goes, I’m so thankful I never pulled anything or got sick. (So good about taking vitamin C and always having antibacterial gel with me!) I did however get extremely painful blood blisters and that was the worst part. I tried everything – foot doctors, different socks, new shoes, 2nd skin, blister bandaids, blister tape etc. and nothing really worked. One pro tip I got at the BMW Dallas Marathon Expo was to tape your feet the night before so that it sticks when dry / stays on better. I used this KT tape during the Marathon. I still had blisters and got new ones, but they probably would have been much worse without it.
Also the long runs take a lot out of you. We did ours on Saturday mornings because that is when we had the most free time. The rest of the day Saturday I was usually too tired to be productive lol. There are ups and downs. After an 18 mile run I just starting crying for no reason that afternoon. It takes a lot mentally and physically.
I feel like the most difficult part leading up to the Dallas Marathon for me was worrying about the unknown variables. Would the weather be okay? I was stalking the weather app. Would I be on my girl time? Mine is unpredictable. Would my blisters be too painful? etc.
What got you through the 26.2 miles?
First of all prayer. I prayed a lot during and thought of Philippians 4:13 ‘I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.’ I listed to music, thought of the post race brunch, looked forward to a massage, was thankful for all of the volunteers passing out water and cheering, and looked forward to seeing my friends & fam! We coordinated on what mile I would see them. My friend Mary was around mile 6, I saw my oldest sister Kim and her husband and kids around mile 7, Luke’s mom and brother were at mile 9 with a change of socks, sweet parents surprised me exactly half way through on mile 13, then saw them again at mile 21 when I really needed it! My father had part of his lung removed and then an emergency follow up surgery about a month ago. He is already back on his bike and even hopped in and ran a few steps with me! Thinking of his strength and how proud he was of me to finish also really helped me push through.
What did you eat during the race?
I drank water and Gatorade at every station (about every two miles) and had a Perfect Bar at mile 10 then Skratch gummies at mile 18 when I kind of hit ‘the wall.’ I kept all of this (plus my phone) in my running belt.
What is finishing like?
Once I passed mile 24 I thought, only two miles left I’ve totally go this, but they felt like they would never end lol. Running through the finish was honestly the coolest feeling in the world. I was thirsty, a little emotional and excited to get my medal! Then walked through what seemed like miles to get to my fam at the ‘family reunion’ area! They were there with open arms – It was a really special celebration!
What did you do the week before?
The week before I lifted weights on Monday, ran easy Tuesday through Thursday and took off completely Friday and Saturday. I tried to stay off of my feet as much as possible, foam roll and drink SO MUCH water. Two nights before I got almost 10 hours of sleep and the night before I only got 5 because I was so nervous. I upped my carb intake a little bit, lots of brown rice, sweet potatoes, bananas etc. The night before I had a big bowl of lentil pasta and a coconut water. The morning of I had water, coffee and a Perfect Bar.
What did you do for recovery?
Would you reccomend the Dallas Marathon?
100 percent yes! I loved running in my city and it is a fairly flat course. Sign up as early as entry allows, this will help you stick to it and not back out!
Things to keep in mind!
A full Marathon takes up a lot of time, you should invest in good shoes, sports massage, proper fuel and you are going to be tired both physically and mentally. It is the most rewarding challenge, but be ready to push yourself!
If you can, train with someone. Luke and I did almost all of our long runs together and it was such a productive way to spend our time with each other. Although moody at times lol, we got through it together!
As for whats next? I want to work on my speed. We will probably do a half marathon in February to have something to train for again and then go from there! I’m excited to have more time for friends, other workouts like Pilates and of course more free time on the weekends!
Thank you so much for reading and for all of your encouragement throughout the last few months! I hope you follow your running dreams!
A few other fitness posts: Marathon training update, Never miss a Monday, Marathon training schedule, How I use my apple watch for fitness, BMW Dallas Half Marathon Recap, Tips for new runners.