so brit, mackenzie and i had a little road trip down to eugene saturday afternoon. the boys came later. we checked in to the hampton. i put it in italics cause we pretended it was fancy. after, we went downtown (caught the tail end of awesome eugene-hippy-saturday-market) for dinner at ambrosia. yum! the food was awesome. my mom and mike stopped by to wish us luck and partake in a little food as well. mackenzie got a hit out of the oil to dip the bread. she was dipping everything in it, including her binky. we ate until we were stuffed. and even though we were a little uncomfortable with our engorged bellies and all, we still hit up the drive-thru tcby. brit and i both love tcby and it isn't everyday there's one with a drive-thru!
(my mom and mike at ambrosia, she is always talking when her picture gets taken)
we went for a little dip in the hampton's pool. kenze loved it, after she got over being a afraid. back at the room brit and i carefully laid out our clothes and race day things. then we tried for about 2 hours to put mackenzie to bed, but i think she was having too much fun. she kept popping up her head and peeking at us over the top of her porta-crib. she thought it was funny. so did we. so we got her up and she ran around like a banshee until justin and tom arrived. then we turned out the lights. then kenze started screaming. justin, lovely man that he is, took her downstairs and out to the car. he drove her around (tom went too) until she fell asleep. but when he brought her back in, she woke up. she was all hyped up from her midnight nap. we brought her to bed with us thinking maybe she would cuddle up and sack out. instead she crawled all over us, kicking and sucking loudly on her binky. she took another nap. at 3 or so justin took her to the lobby where she entertained the late night receptionist.
(still half asleep, boarding the shuttle)
we got up at 5. after a minor detour (justin thought he knew where he was going, luckily i had memorized the route from our hotel to the expo) we caught the shuttle to hayward field, drinking our red bulls along the way. brit and i hit up the honey bucket and found our place at the start.
brit had told me that the first five miles would be a blur and she was right. i was caught up in the excitement. for the first ten minutes, when we were still packed tight, i just listened to the sound of breathing and pounding feet. oddly, everyone was silent that first mile. when i looked ahead there were bobbing heads for as far as i could see, when i looked behind it was a mirror image. we passed by houses playing music for us, people in lawn chairs yelling. we ran next to a 74 year old woman for about a half a mile, before she passed us. at about 3 miles we caught up and ran with a blind runner. my eyes filled as we trudged behind him. he was attached with a rope to a running partner, it was such an act of faith and i will never forget it. i was impressed with all the different walks of life that were there. 8,000 people from all over, varying in every way possible, sweat it out on the streets of eugene. i was cracking up at the variety of outfits of the participants. my favorite was a man, maybe 65 or so, wearing a red sweatshirt with the sleeves cut off and red shiny spandex pants.
(mackenzie cheering on the runners)
(mile 8. still smiling!)
this was by far the biggest, longest, most exciting race i've ran in. i trained for four months. during that four months i was sicker than i had ever been, i lost my grandfather, i went on a cruise, had crappy runs, lost ten pounds, gained back ten pounds, had amazing runs...it was quite the journey. i had goosebumps as i funneled into the last half mile down agate street into hayward field. i spied my mom and mike cheering (she was easy to spot as she was spastically hopping up and down) right at the entrance into the field. i ran my hardest the last hundred meters, the crowds cheered, my eyes teared, and my name boomed on the loud speaker.
(crossing the finish line)