I can feel my legs aching as I’m writing this!  Walking up and down the stairs last night and this morning I was thinking, “this must be what it feels like to be very old and have arthritis.”  I know I will do everything I can to avoid that.  So why are my legs so sore today?  Let me explain.

About ooooh maybe 5 months ago, I saw a video of the Disney Princess Half Marathon Run.  I thought, “Oh my gosh!  That is SOOO my kind of race!  Obviously, because I am a princess (this has been one of my many nicknames and I think every girl secretly wants to be a princess) and I love to run.  You get to run through the Magic Kingdom dressed up as a Disney Princess, only with added spandex and some sneakers.

Up to that point I had only run 6.2 miles at one time, but 13.1 miles didn’t sound too scary.  I’ve never had the thought or intention to run a full marathon, but this half marathon sounded really fun.  Shortly after I found out about it I made a youtube video about setting goals.  One of the goals I set a goal for myself was to run 13.1 miles and I wanted to do it within 90 days.  I wanted to do this mainly to prove to myself that I would be actually able to run in the Disney Princess Half Marathon and also just to set a goal and have something to work towards and stay motivated.

Then I remembered I was writing a book.  Whoops!  I’m sure I could have figured out how to fit in a training schedule along with working on it, but at the time it seemed a little overwhelming.  A few people asked me, when I was getting very close to finishing my book, if I ever did complete my running goal (I’m glad you guys are keeping me honest).  I said I hadn’t yet, but I still planned on doing it.  So, I made an amendment to my goal by extending the time and I decided to start up with training as soon as I finished my book and came home from the Woodstock Fruit Festival.

I want to point out that 13.1 miles might not sound like a lot to some people, but it is a lot to anyone who has never run anywhere close to that distance.  I have amazing friends who will sometimes run this much every day for weeks in a row.  I find this incredible because I have always struggled with running, although I have seen big improvements over the past couple years.  I only started doing it regularly and enjoying it about 2 years ago.  Before eating a high carb raw vegan diet I didn’t even have the motivation to think about running.

I figured that many first time marathon runners train by running half marathons, so maybe it was okay for me to train by running 6.2 miles a couple times a week (this is the distance of one loop around the lake near my house.)  I did this 4 times.  Then I decided I was ready.  I picked a day.  It was September 23rd.  Then it was September 24th, then the 25th.  Hmm, I seemed to be procrastinating.

“Okay, okay!  I’ll do it!  I want to do it!  Why am I not doing it?”, I thought to myself.  Alright, the perfect day came and I had no excuses.  It was yesterday, September 29th.  Did I do it?  Yes.

Here is me before the run, super excited and optimistic:

This is about 3/4 through the first loop, about 4 miles in. Feeling awesome like I could go so much faster, but I wanted to pace myself.

 I wish there was a photo of my face just after I finished 10 miles.  I was hating life at that moment!  Thinking about how much my legs hurt and that I still had to run 3 more miles like that made me want to cry.  I had to stop for a few seconds and shake out my legs 4 times between about 9 and 13 miles or I may have just fallen over.

I should mention that I brought a few dates with me that I ate during the second loop.  Thank gosh!  They definitely helped improved my mood.  I did take a quick water and date break halfway through.  Also, I was running on black top in Vibrams… I’m not sure I would do this again.  I think a tiny bit more padding would have gone a long way for me here.

And here I am SOOO happy to be finished but I can’t seem to muster up a full smile because I’m walking like a penguin and my legs feel like wood.

 Somehow 2 miles into the run I managed to catch my toe on a bridge and scraped it through my Vibram.  Another reason to not wear the Vibrams on this particular run.  Thankfully it didn’t really start to hurt until after I finished running.  Sorry if this is super gross for some of you, I thought it was funny.

 How would I do it differently next time?

*Bring a few more dates

*Wear thicker Vibrams or sneakers with minimal padding

*Definitely run 8 and then 10 miles before running 13

*And fully charge my ipod so it doesn’t die during the last 3 miles!

I’m so glad I did it!  My time was about 2 hours and 20 minutes.  I’m going to try to make it a once every other month thing if I do sign up for the Princess Race in February.  Its a possibility that I’m super excited about.  I will also continue to run the 6.2 mile loop around the lake a lot more often now that it seems so much easier comparatively.

Quick reminder for ya’ll before I say goodbye!  My site was down last week, so sorry about that!  :(  Everything is fixed and working great now.  BUT!  This week I am giving 15% off all my e-books to make up for it :)  Yeeeha!  The discount code is “FRUIT”.  So make sure you take advantage of that if you were thinking about getting any of my e-books, there’s only a few more days left.

http://www.meganelizabeth.com/ns/books/

Thanks for reading guys!  See ya on YouTube <3

8 comments
Jessi
Jessi

p.s. I blackened four toenails, had cuts and scrapes and blisters a plenty during my training. I photographed every hard earned war wound! :)

Jessi
Jessi

Hey Megan! So I've been following you over the last year and have purchased all your books. I've really been trying to commit to being vegan and giving the raw food thing a try. I'm living with my parents right now (student loans and all that) but my partner and I are planing to buy a home next year. Not having our own place has really presented a barrier in terms of me sticking to this diet that I so want to stick to because I fell 300% better on it. I've been vegetarian now for several year. I have no cravings for meat. I wen back to eaing it for a few short months last year and ended up getting really really sick! I wasn't long tossing it back out. But the dairy is kicking my butt. Literally. Living with my parents is problematic, I'm surrounded by my old diet and competing for space in the fridge! Anyway, I saw this entry today and it made me so happy because I've been off track on exercise and I want to get back into it. I ran a full marathon last year and now a 5k is hard. I'm so excited for you! I remember crossing the 13.1 mile mark the first time.......man I walked like a duck for a few days hehehe. I just wanted to tell you that you're such an inspiration! I see a naturopathic doc and the first time I saw your site I went flying into her office yelling "you have to check this girl out!". My naturopath has been raw vegan for years. Thanks for sharing all that you do! I can't wait for the next book!

Stacey
Stacey

Wow, I'm pumped reading this - thanks for the motivation!! I recently ran an 8.6km road race just to see if I could complete it in my Vibrams...I had been 'training' but I'd never checked my distance to see if I was even capable of anything near that distance (just over 5miles). About a week before the race I found out I'd been running 6 or so km a few days a week anyway - in Vibrams - so I was confident I could do the race. I just wanted to finish in less than 1 hr. And with a smile on my face. Check! As soon as I crossed that finish line I was handed a flier for another race next month, in Nov! But its a 10k...dare I?! I know I should increase distance graaadually in my Vibrams, but I wondered if that's too much too fast? I'm going for it! And I got a great tip from a new 30BAD buddy; he said to do it Chi Running-style! (now I'm doing my training runs in my Vibram's with my iPod playing Danny Dreyer's Chi Running - from Audible :) I figure its worth a try. My friend ran the Chicago Marathon this way (very recently) & in Invisible Shoes! He says its a whole new experience...I'll let ya know.

Quita
Quita

I'm glad I read this. I actually have my first half marathon in a month and I am no where close to being prepared. I am actually hoping I can work up to being able to run 3 miles without stopping. Right now my 5k is 45 mins and I know some people can run a 10k in that time. To prepare for my run I am going 80% RAW so I will feel my best. I am currently a vegetarian transitioning to a more RAW lifestyle. I recently discovered your youtube videos and look forward to trying the recipes. I think I love bananas as much as you love citrus. Congrats on meeting your goal. If I make it through the soldiers half marathon I will let you know how it goes :)

Dovile
Dovile

Hey Megan, I ran my first half marathon on the 29th September too :) and my time was also the same as yours too :) I'm 80 % raw, still cannot live without creamy hot pumpkin soups :) I like your videos and blog and your way of living, I'm also the same age as you, best wishes for you and keep going, you are so inspiring person for me and for all others :) Regards from Lithuania (Europe) :)

Fruit Geek
Fruit Geek

Hey, good job reaching your goal! I recently got into running myself and fell in love. I've set a goal of doing a sub 20 minute 5k which is going to be a tough nut to crack. I must say, as I've learned really quickly, shoes make a world of a difference. It doesn't seem like you liked the Vibrams very much for this run. I have never tried them but I picked up a pair of Brooks PureCadence which is a really good minimalist shoe. I LOVE them. Check out their Pure line if you want a minimalist feel but a little more padding than your Vibrams. The whole Brooks running line is vegan too! :)

Gaby
Gaby

Thanks for sharing Megan! I've never done more than 10 or so Km. so this is super inspirational! I hope you continue to improve and learn from running! You're awesome!

Lindsey
Lindsey

You should try running in compression pants. It will help you have better muscle recovery and they really help form and alignment while running.

© 2014 Megan Elizabeth.