Toward the end of the race, I came up to the bridge I’d remember from a year ago, and I knew I was almost done. When I got closer to the finish, the family I was staying with was there cheering me on! (Awwww.)
I was worried that this race might be a little lonely without Taylor (who I’d done it with last year) and without my dad since I’d just spent a week with him and already missed him the moment I boarded the plane.
So, having a family that welcomed me with such open arms into a huge (metaphorical) bear hug felt so good.
I finished in just under 4 hours, and even still, I was pretty exhausted. My body was basically pretty over it by this point. “Okay, Aurora. We get it. You like distance events. We did a freaking marathon (after a half marathon(!) last week. We’re tired. Is it time to just sit around and watch Three’s Company yet?” – my legs.
Plus, the heat! Oh my goodness, the heat. Some people thought the Disney marathon was hot? I didn’t think it was anything compared to this weather. Maybe it’s just something about how Arizona is oh so very dry that makes it seem hotter.
That’s not really how it works, I guess. Humidity supposedly makes you hotter, but I’m just stating how I feel. And I feel that the dry, hot, dry (yes, I said dry twice because it’s really dry) desert is (that sizzling, blurry field of vision comes up in front of my face like in the movies. Empty, hot facial expression. (And scene)).
This half marathon was a bit of a struggle, and I thought it was very fitting to end how I started – delirious, tired, and sore.
Last year, this was #1 of the 52 half marathons. I didn’t even know I was doing 52 half marathons when I did it! I was just trying to get back into the game and spend some time with an amazing friend of mine. I wasn’t super trained. I was incredibly tired toward the end. My brain was fried. I’m sure that after the race, I was saying all kinds of things to Taylor that didn’t make sense. She was so sweet anyway, though.
After the race, I went to good ol’ Garret at the Heavy Medals tent, and got my sweet Desert Double Down medal for having done Las Vegas and AZ (yes, I know one is a city and one’s a state, but that’s how the Rock ‘n’ Roll series names them) in two consecutive months.
I’m gonna miss the heavy medal booth. What will it be like to be some normal person not doing far too many races in one year? Bye Garret! It’s been fun.
After the race, I met up with the family I’d stayed with. J finished almost an hour ahead of me… and he did the full marathon. We all had a delicious meal together. Then I had nap time, plane time, and I was home that night.
What?! Home? How sad and normal.
Yep, after an amazing trip to Florida and Arizona with a bunch of races and cast of amazing people cheering me on, I was back in Los Angeles (wah wah).
Even though this story is over, I’d love if you stuck around the blog a while longer. I’ve still got some conclusions posts about the whole project, a post on strategies for Goofy, some more stories from Orlando… and best of all, I’ll be announcing my next project next month! So, stick around if you would. Hope to see you tomorrow!