This recap was submitted by Run Oregon reader Bonnie Wilson. Feel free to Submit a Guest Post in the “Contact Us” tab if you are wanting to write a preview or recap your running experiences as well!
Back in January, I signed up with Foot Traffic to begin the Portland Marathon training program. Not knowing anyone, and only having experience with running a half marathon, I decided to sign up.Foot Traffic is wonderful! They provide a free training plan, talks from nutrition, to shoes, to watches. The only thing I had to pay for was my race entry.
Every Saturday, I would meet at a different Foot Traffic location, and start with 3 miles and worked all the way up to 22 miles. I had a pace mentor and group that I could count on every weekend!
Signing up for a marathon was not easy for me. Between Crohn’s Disease, and only running one half marathon, I knew I was in for a challenge, but a marathon had been my goal since I was 10 years old!!
The Portland Marathon was an excellent first marathon choice! I arrived at 5:30am, and got to check my bag at the downtown Foot Traffic store. Because my nerves were running high, I was able to use a real bathroom several times and by 6:30 I was ready to head to my corral! Talk about organized! The corrals were divided up by your expected finish time, so the entire race, I was surrounded by those who were running the same pace. I connected with four other women right away, and we paced each other to the very end!
I only spent a couple of minutes waiting to be called, I was corral E, and by the time I got up to the start line, it took about 30 seconds to cross and run! It spread out really fast and I wasn’t stepping on heals or overcrowded! Foot Traffic prepared me well, so I had already run the first half of the course several times before! There were aid stations every mile and I could always count on water and the electrolyte they were offering!
I felt so strong the whole way, and there was constant support! I’ve never seen so many supporters at one race before! Before I knew it I was at the finish line with hundreds and hundreds of people lined up cheering and screaming! Volunteers were waiting to hand me water, my medal and food!
This was the biggest accomplishment of my life! My health issues left me feeling discouraged and hopeless, but thanks to Foot Traffic, I completed a marathon, and continue to beat the odds!!