On Saturday, April 1st, I ran the inaugural Naked Prussian Marathon at Blue Marsh Lake outside of Reading, PA. It was essentially the same course as the Naked Bavarian with an extra 6 mile lollipop and an extra bit in the beginning as well. Full disclosure, I ran the 40 miler on March 4, 2017 and basically stopped running for a month. We went to France and got back and I may have ran 15 miles total in between the 40 miler and the marathon. This race sneaked up on me #ultrarunnerproblems much?!? I thought I had another week or two before the race. Either way I was signed up and with the generous time cut-offs I knew I could run at least 20 and hike the rest.
It was refreshing to have a race without any pressure. No one knew I was running a marathon besides my husband. It was purely for fun and that’s what I did, I had fun! I started the racing running with my friend Keilynn who has been training like crazy and I knew I could keep up with her in the beginning but figured she would forge ahead at some point which I was perfectly happy with. So we started off. I hadn’t seen her since the Naked Bavarian and we really didn’t get a chance to catch up after that race so we were chatting so much that miles 1-13 really flew by. Yup a whole half marathon just flew by, I was running faster than last time with less paralyzing fear of getting hurt. It was interesting because the course was so muddy and slippery but I was being less cautious than the last time I was on the course. Don’t get me wrong I wasn’t being reckless, I just wasn’t being a wimp about the downhills and the mud. I felt like a kid again running through the forest with a friend. It felt GREAT.
At about mile 12 there was another aid station and we were headed back to the route I was familiar with from the Naked Bavarian except we were doing it backwards so the easy part was first and the hills were second. I still had some kick left in me so I kicked it into high gear and got moving. At certain points, Keilynn was having a hard time keeping up with me but I knew she had time goals and I knew this was the best part of the course to makeup time. I also knew that I was going to pay for running too fast at this point of the race later but I didn’t really care and it felt great not to give a shit. I wanted to feel the burn in my legs and man did it burn.
At the next aid station at about mile 17, we stocked up and headed for the hills. Now I was pooped and Keilynn’s been training like a beast on hills so around this point I lost her. I was pretty damn proud I had stayed with her for that long but my lower back started hurting and I just couldn’t keep up with the hills. Before Keilynn went on her way we were perpetually chasing the Pope. There was a guy running the race dressed as the pope (well it was a bishop costume or something but I like saying Pope!) It was hilarious and he was actually very nice and a great source of entertainment.
After the climbs and the downhills my legs were toast and the last 6 miles were a bit challenging. I played some music and talked to myself a bunch but overall the race was a success. I was great with nutrition and hydration and my mental game was strong. I think it really helped to know the course and not to have to repeat it 🙂 and to have the memory of the lows at the Naked Bavarian so fresh in my mind.
In the last mile or so I finally caught up to the Pope and we chatted about our families. He snapped this great pic of my family and I was able to finish the race with my toddler. It’s really awesome that my husband comes to support me at these events. I love looking forward to seeing them at the end, it’s truly the best part of my run.
It was a great race and we ended the day by going to this insane asylum for the kiddos:
Happy Hump Day!