Lisa was wonderful enough to let me meet her at her home and then Dan drove us to the start. It was SO nice to sleep in until 5:10 and not have to ride trax! I need to make Dan a wonderful vegan treat for being so wonderful.
It took a while to find the group, but we did and all went well and we lined up and were off. We had a few people with us at the start and through the first few miles. It is always fun to meet and chat with new people! Quite a few of them were from out of town and it was fun to hear their stories. I didn't shed my sweatshirt until mile 6. It was a cold morning. Yes, I was over dressed, but I swear I had been cold for the last 2 days!
I did a gu at 8, 14 and 20. Some people were out on the course handing out oranges, red vines and strawberries. There was a lot of good support out. Lots more than I remember from years past. The course is a good honest one and you don't get a ton of downhill. You certainly gotta earn it! From the U up to the avenues, down city creek, winding your way up through 9th and 9th and then Millcreek and then to 2300E and out to about 5200S then you get to turn and wind your way back into the city and down to 200E. You still get a few nice uphills in there too. Then the wind was coming from the North and the West, so you were basically fighting it the full last 7 miles too. I was REALLY happy that we had banked 2-3 minutes by then and that we were able to walk through aid stations as needed and keep closer to a 10mm pace than a 9:44. We gathered another big group around mile 20 and we pushed them through until Liberty park and mile 25 when we kicked them out and told them that they were on their way to a sub 4:15 and to go get it done. It was fun to watch them head off in front of us and the one or two that we would catch we would pick them up and give them a push forward.
We were able to finish and watch a few stragglers that fell off the gorup finish. It was a great day! Pacing is always rewarding. Even if I felt like crap the entire time. Heck! It was a 9:44 pace and it killed me. I was so tired and just wanted to be done around mile 14. My back hurt, my feet felt like they had blisters, my hamstrings were tight, my gut felt crappy (literally sometimes), I felt light headed and overall just wanted to stop running. I have to honor the 26 miles of a marathon. I forget sometimes that even at a slow pace it can kick my butt and I have to be ready for it. I just did too much this week, stood on my feet too long the day before and didn't eat. I finished, but it wasn't pretty. I held it together, but man I did NOT feel good through this race.
I got a burger on the way home that tasted like mana from heaven, which absolutely disgusts me. blech! I hate fast food, but I was just so hungry. I got home, showered, layed down on the couch and took a nap. I didn't wake up for a few hours, but then we went to play and eat and clean the gym. Oh man. What a day! 4:15 pace for a marathon wipes me out? Man alive, I have really just turned a new stone.