I did it! I crossed the finish line of my first (and possibly last) full marathon. (Yeah, I know - I say that now.)
I think one of the most amazing things (besides actually being able to see and cross the finish line) was that I did it all with only one pit stop during the race at Mile 9, without another one until I got back to my hotel room after the marathon. We're talking almost 6 hours without a pee break. Considering the amount of water and Power Ade that I drank at each station, and the fact that it was freezing-ass COLD out there, that's nothing short of miraculous!
All in all, I held up pretty well physically. Some minor annoyances like a small blister at the bottom of my little toe that started at around Mile 23, and my left knee started to bother me a little bit after Mile 10, probably due to the pitch in the road. Mentally was another story altogether. There were some long stretches of highway walking - particularly between the starting line at EpCot and the Magic Kingdom. On the plus side, they were flat. On the minus side, they were B-O-R-I-N-G! They were also just a bit windy in spots. Just a bit. I think my worst stretch mentally and physically was between miles 18-24, especially between miles 20-21! (Those of you who were there know what I mean:-) My best miles pace-wise were miles 1-10.
My best miles mentally were miles 24-26.2, when one of my coaches met me and walked through EpCot's World Showcase with me as far as mile 26. It was like strolling through my "home away from home" at Disney. The best part (aside from crossing the Finish Line) was having an unplanned cheering section made up of my friends, the fabulous and wonderful World Showcase Players, who were starting a show right as I passed the United Kingdom pavillion. That was AWESOME!!! Talk about perfect timing!
More to follow a bit later (because there's SO MUCH more great stuff to tell), but I wanted to write at least this much down before I forgot it all. It was a great experience!