It took me forever to fall asleep last night, and I didn't sleep well at all. I woke up before my alarm, at 4:15 this morning. I had oat bran for breakfast with milk and peanut butter, and a cup of tea. Then I drove to meet Jessica, Renee, and Andrea, and Renee drove to the race, picking up Alicia and Stephanie as well.
|Alicia, Jessica, Andrea, me, Renee, Julia|
I brought along my iPod, which I've never done for a race before. I remembered how awful my last race on Grosse Ile was (the Run Happy 8K), and nobody was talking during that race. I figured it would be the same, quiet run today, so I brought the iPod.
I popped a Clif Shot Blok in my mouth right as the race started, because I usually get caught up in the excitement, go too fast, and get a really dry mouth. Having the shot blok helped a lot. Almost immediately, I spotted a someone about 5 people deep in front of me with a shirt that had "watchmegorun.com" on the back--and I realized that I read her blog. So I tried to catch up to her to say hello, but there were too many people (and she was definitely speedier than me).
I tried to settle into a comfortable pace right away, but it was hard. There were a lot of people, and the race course bottle-necked us a couple of times right at the start. About a mile or so in, Johna (who I ran with a few times with Jessica in the beginning of our marathon training) came up from behind, and we ran together for a couple of miles. I had a bad muscle cramp in my left side from the very start of the race, and it was then that I realized today was definitely not my day for hitting the sub-2:00, so I was glad I stuck to my 'B' goal (which was to PR).
At mile 4, I ate a chocolate Gu that the race was handing out, and that gave me a little pick-me-up, so I sped up and that was the last I saw of Johna. Once I got to mile 6 or so, I was really looking forward to the water stations. I was thirsty! But they were more sporadic than I would have liked. I wished I had brought my water bottle belt thing.
At around mile 7, I was staying right on pace with this one guy for a while--we were running side by side. Then he'd pass me, and I'd pass him, and so on, playing leap frog until I passed him at mile 9 and didn't see him again until later.
I chatted with a woman for a minute about her Nathan handheld water bottle, asking if she liked it. At mile 10 or so, I felt like my legs suddenly turned to lead. The fatigue hit me fast. I ate my 'emergency' Gu from my SPI belt, and just kept putting one foot in front of the other. I wanted it to be over so badly!
At around mile 11, that guy from earlier passed me. I said, "Hey, not YOU again! I thought I passed you!" But I knew I had slowed down, and I was fine with that. I knew I would still PR, by quite a bit. I felt like I was dying for water the last 5 miles or so, but they had finally had a water station at mile 11, which I definitely needed. I drank two cups and kept moving along. The last mile felt really long.
I kind of wished I didn't bring my iPod with me, because a lot of the people on the course were friendly. I probably could have had some good conversations. I put the iPod in my SPI belt at mile 12, so I could be all-ears for the last mile.
The clock said 2:03:47 (which was more than my chip time), and I knew I crushed my previous PR of 2:10:40. I waved to Renee at the last minute and stuck my tongue out (as in, "Ugh, I'm so exhausted!") and I think that's probably what was captured in my race finish line photo, haha.
The Garmin time isn't my "official" result, but it's close:
While I was walking, I saw a very pregnant half-marathon finisher who looked familiar--so I said hi and introduced myself (I read her blog, but I don't think she had a clue who I was).
We went to check out the food, and they had PANERA bagels and homemade cookies--if my stomach felt up to it, I would have eaten some serious carb calories. I did take a blueberry bagel and a macaroon. I ate the macaroon right away, and it was AMAZING. But my stomach wasn't feeling up to the bagel, so I brought it home for lunch, and it was delicious.
Stopped for a group picture on the way to the car:
|Me, Alicia, Andrea, Jessica, Stephanie, and Renee|
Chip time: 2:02:57 (9:23/mi pace) (crushed my previous PR of 2:10:40)
Overall placement: 454/834 (I was in the bottom half of finishers... good grief!)
Age group: 32/75
And my splits:
I'll post the race photos when they're ready on the website. Overall, I'm happy that I PR'ed, and I'm happy I didn't go for the sub-2:00, because I think I would have been very disappointed. The race was good, I would probably do it again next year--except I'd bring my own water for the course.
Race photos are in! A couple of good ones, a couple of bad ones...
|My running form looks terrible here|
|My favorite of the pics|
|All race finish photos show me stopping my Garmin|