2016 proved to be a challenge to my running world, since my body didn’t want to run. At all. The piss-poor attitude of my feet and lungs sucked the joy out of any runner’s high.
Until we drove into the town of Millinocket, Maine at sunset on Friday, December 9th. Everything snapped back into place in my mind and body. The hibernation was over with the first breaths of cold air in a financially struggling town that was thrilled to have us visit – runners/walkers/crews – if only for a weekend.
Two gal friends and I chose to walk the half marathon course rather than attempt to run it. Temps on Saturday, December 10th at the start were freezing, at 10*F with wind-chill temps in the -5*F to -10*F range due to relentless wind gusts. We were bundled and energized and ready for a good time. The community needed us and I needed them.
Walking 13.1 miles uphill into fierce winds in winter is exhausting. And exhilarating. Businesses and families made mile markers that greatly entertained us along the way.
We stopped at every one of the markers so I could take a picture of Brenda and Jennifer. Each time my hand came in contact with the cold air, the skinned burned. Instantly. It was that cold and windy. Incredible.
This race was like none other I have been to – both for the extreme temperatures and the hills. I avoid hills due to my breathing issues but I wasn’t letting that stop me from being a part of this event. There were hills and more hills and yet more hills. I recall only one large downhill, which is crazy! There should have been an equal amount of downhills! Then again, the miles blurred together after a while 🙂
Millinocket is magic. Honestly. I feel rejuvenated, inspired, and focused. A training calendar has been made in prep for the Hyannis Marathon on February 26th, 2017. I made it simple, doable, and am actually looking forward to the journey ahead. Ran/walked with Brenda on the indoor track at our YMCA for 4 miles on Tuesday and 5.5 miles on Thursday. I am off and running!
The start/finish line banner was held up by logging trucks. Us walking into the finish line.