The weekend in Philly was great- got to have an amazing dinner and spend some time with my family. We always have a ton of fun together!
Race morning: Nikki lives in downtown Philly so staying at her place was awesome because we were able to walk to the starting line. I woke up at 6:30 which gave me plenty of time to eat a little, use the restroom (yay no porta-potty!), stretch and walk over the start with plenty of time. I was feeling great in the morning- my stomach was not giving me any problems and I felt awake and ready to run. I also felt well prepared because I have been doing long runs every weekend for the past several weeks- so 13.1 is only 1 mile longer than my longest training run. Easy.
The race was super crowded but extremely well organized. I left Phil, Bill and Char and took my place in my assigned corral. My corral starting moving around 9 minutes after the initial gun went off and I started my Garmin GPS watch as soon as I crossed the start mat. Within my first three or four strides my left IT band felt awful. Great.
After the first mile I decided I needed to make a friend. On all of my long training runs I have had someone to talk to (Whitney, Bill, ect) so I needed to talk to someone to take my mind off the running. I started talking to this girl Kris- who after running with her for a mile told me she was running the NY marathon in a few weeks and expected to break 3 hours. Needless to say, I was not able to keep up with her long.
At mile marker 3 I stopped and stretched. I was happy with my pace- when I was running I was running 8:30 minute miles but with the stopping and stretching it made it more like a 10 minute pace.
Just as I was feeling really awful I hear my friend Rachael scream my name! I couldn't see her, but I heard her and I screamed back, and kept on running. That got me to the next mile marker feeling strong.
Miles 4-6 were the worst. I felt awful. All around awful. My legs felt heavy, I was hot, and I felt really tired. Then I was frustrated with myself that I was feeling this way- all of my training runs were awesome! What the hell. I even had a 5 year old yell at me...I started to walk for a minute around mile 5 and she exclaimed "Hey! This is a running race! You don't walk in a running race!". So I listened to the little brat and kicked it up a notch. Mile marker 5 was also when I realized that the course mile markers and my GPS watch were not agreeing on the mileage. At mile marker 5 on the course, my watch said it was 5.6. I think the course was a bit long.
After mile 6 I decided to chuck the negative attitude and just run. I cheered at people when the cheered for me. I offered encouragement to those who stopped and walked or moved over to the side to stretch. I allowed myself to stop and stretch for 30 seconds at every mile marker. I probably could have pushed through, but then my IT band would have been bothering me all week, and with my first tri coming up, I did not want that.
My goal time was 2 hours and 10 minutes. Because I was running at such a good pace when I was running, I was able to stop and stretch and still be on target. I was able to do this until mile 11 (now mile 11.7 on my watch!). Somehow between mile 11 and the finish, I lost 3 minutes and crossed the finish line at 2:13. The distance on my watch said 13.85...so if the course was as long as my watch argues then I did indeed meet my goal of running 13.1 in 2 hours and 10 minutes. :)
But my official time for the race is 2:13. Not too shabby...so even though I felt like crap for a few miles, I think I did pretty well. I'm sure I will be faster for the next one..and hopefully won't feel as gross. Bring on the full marathon!
Here are some pictures:
|Sporting our finishers medals!|
|Phil being mean|
|me, Phil, Char and Bill|
|Rach came to cheer us on!|
|celebration cheesesteak. Nom Nom Nom|