After finishing, it was not as bueno as this picture would paint...This picture was taken much farther from the Finish line than one would imagine...I believe if you squint really hard you can make out the Finish line waaaaaaay off in the distance. Trust me its farther than it appears. Actually looking at it now, it does look really far, even in that picture! (Its where you see that elevated section way off in the background; it had peeps in it for photo purposes etc.)
I crossed the Finish line, stopped my watch and began moving forward. I had been here before and I knew I had a ways to go even just for water. And I was emotional. I was sunburned. I was covered in salt. And I was fucking tired. But mostly I was that first thing: emotional.
However, within probably a minute I was unable to breathe. My chest locked up on me and I was gasping for air, which sounded a lot like ... heck I can't even explain it; like a heaving/wheezing noise. I had it happen once before, on a long training run when training for Houston 2010 and it was because of an incident at a water stop where I was overcome with anger, hate and sadness. It was the first time I had ever had it happen and it was not fun! It basically took me the last 2 miles of that run before I felt better as it kept happening. We'll just leave it at that.
I knew what was happening at this moment was an anxiety (panic) attack. More anxiety driven obviously due to my state of mind/body.
The volunteer grabbed me and I was bent over just trying to breathe, and trying to tell her what was wrong but I couldnt talk.
She managed to convince me it would be easier to breathe and get air in my lungs if I was in an upright position instead of basically closing off airway by being bent over.
Duh. I'm not an idiot but clearly was not thinking straight. But thinking straight enough to know I didnt need the wheel chair she was trying to put me in. Unless you are going to wheel me all the way back to the hotel lady, I ain't sittin' down, or its possible I might not be able to get back up.
She got me calmed down and I concentrated on taking deep long breaths and eventually within 5 min or so, I was much better. Thankfully she had a spare water bottle and gave that to me, so that was a +
I thanked her and started moving forward again, having the medal put around my neck, and yes, I grabbed one of those icky draft beers but man it did taste good. And cold.
This year I remembered that I could cut through this one part, so I made my way towards Michigan where I stopped at the bus stop and waited. And waited. And waited. I had the exact amount of $ for the bus (our cards expired at 10:36 that morning), but waiting (probably only 5 min but seemed like forever) was just making it worse. So off I trudged. Making it to State St and then heading 'home'. Its a good mile to a mile and 1/2. 13 blocks.
Thir. Teen. Blocks.
Not itty bitty blocks but loooooooong blocks like NYC blocks!
But I made it but not without 2 different homeless people asking me if I had any money.
The 2nd one was told "Dude. Do I look like I have any money? I am pretty much naked."
And why oh why must some people insist on asking "oh. Did you run today?"
[insert 'confused look' on my face first. then insert a 'are you that stupid' look on my face after that]
Once I got to the hotel, before even getting on the elevator I walked straight into Wow Bao and got a Diet coke fountain drink! I wanted a Big Gulp from 7-11 but that was another block away!
Once I got up to my room is when I realized that basically everyone was freaking out to some degree since they had only gotten the 10K split time and then an estimated finish time.
They were going to have to wait. I had an ice bath to take!!! I had kept my clear LARGE expo bag and the ice machine was right near us so I just filled that sucker up with what probably amounted to about 15 lbs of ice? Good enough. I had run the tub full of cold water before we left but gah!! It had all seeped out while I was gone!!! I finally got my ice bath, took a nice hot shower, put on my baggy cutoff sweats and began texting people back.
Eventually Tracey showed up, then Amanda. Tracey was not doing well, severe headache and peeing like crazy. Like every 5 minutes no lie. Amanda went off somewhere to get food and I waited to see if Tracey would feel better. Eventually I set out on my own (probably best anyway), and ended up at this pub we had gone to previously. I ate the best damn hamburger ever! a large order of french fries and a pint of beer!!
Damn was that good!!! If you know me at all you know that I didnt finish my meal, but I did get all the beef part of the hamburger eaten and I finished that beer too!
It was nice to just chill out, relax, gather my thoughts, watch some football and talk to the bartender (I sat at the bar since I was by myself).
I then made my way back to the hotel, changed back into comfy clothes and tried to sleep...
This basically never happened, so when Monday morning rolled around by noon, I was like the Walking Dead.
We didn't leave Chicago until late afternoon on Monday, Tracey and I (Amanda left very early), so we just had a wonderful buffet breakfast, walked/shopped and just tried to stay mobile. We were both in pretty good shape if I do say so myself.
And there you have it internet people. I am even sick of hearing about Chicago!
Now 7 weeks to Dallas White Rock!!! I'll ramp back up to 20-21 miles to be run on November 12th, then taper back down again!