After hounding Alyssa all weekend about what my race goal should be, I think she finally realized I was serious and sat down with me to look at the elevation chart and help me plan it out. We determined that my shoot for the stars goal would be 1:21. With a goal in mind, it was time for bed. After tossing and turning for.ev.er. I think I finally dozed off at 12:30. Four hours later I was up and at 'em getting ready for the race. I felt sick as soon as I woke up. Not fun. I choked down my protein bar and banana, even though I felt like it was going to come back up. When I got to my car to head to the Metrodome, I found it covered in frost. Uh... brrrrrrrrrrr.
I got to the Metrodome, and I was happy to say that my first visit inside had nothing to do with the Minnesota Vikings. :) While stretching (or really just wrestling with pre-race nerves) Julie came up to me! Julie was running her FIRST MARATHON!!!! We have very similar race times, so we talked race strategy and goals, and before I knew it, my stomach was dictating the gazillionth bathroom break of the morning, and I didn't have much time before I had to be lined up in my corral. I said goodbye to Julie, waited in an insanely long line, and hit the cold cold outdoors.
After growing goosebumps on top of my 2 layers of goosebumps, it was almost time for the race to start. At one point, a guy dressed for a winter blizzard came up to me and asked if I was cold, and said that I made him feel like a wuss. Hah. I almost told him he'd surely have the upper hand if it was hot and humid, but decided to just roll with the complement...ish.
When it was corral #2's turn to toe the starting line, everyone kind of chuckled as the race director yelled at "GO!" to start the race.... that is until we realized she was serious. Oh ok then. The crowd was pretty tight for the first mile. By 1.25 I was so very happy that I had decided on shorts and a short sleeved shirt. Oh who am I kidding? I only brought shorts and a short sleeved shirt, there was no "deciding." :p By the second mile I was able to find a bit of a groove, and found my race pace. Mile three was met by our first steep incline, followed immediately by a steep decline. I tried to work hard up the hills, and ran somewhat tentatively down the hills as I wasn't sure how the knee was going to handle them.
I had been going sans iPod for the beginning miles of the race and just enjoying the sounds of other runners' footfalls. When we approached the hill at mile 4 I decided it was time to turn on the tunage. No I didn't decide to listen to Rihanna's Only Girl (In the World) on repeat..... but I might have for the final 3 miles.... don't judge. :) We ran over a bridge that was covered by early morning mist and fog, and it was gorgeous. Couldn't have asked for a better morning for a race. I knew from looking at the elevation map that there was a steady climb from mile 4.5-7. I found myself going back and forth between running hard and settling in to my comfortable running pace. Each time I would catch myself running vs. racing I gave myself a stern scolding and the legs picked up the pace.
For some reason, I kept expecting my legs to crap out on me like they had during the Sioux Falls Half Marathon. Yes, this was a full 5k shorter, but this route was much hillier than that one, and it slaughtered me. Yet my legs still felt good. At 3 miles to go I tried to pick up the pace. At the 9 mile marker I realized I had a TON of gas left in the tank.... and a decent sized downhill to the finish. I also knew that my Garmin was showing ~.06 long, and if I didn't want my official time to be 1:25 I would need to haul ass. I started flying past people and down the hill. My usual IT band screams were non-existent...whaaaaa????? As I got close to the finish line I heard Alyssa yelling for me, and the announcer say my name. YIPPEE!
I crossed the finish line and immediately started looking for my medal. Shirt? check. Food? Check. Water? Check. Medal? Hells to the no. MINNESOTA RACES WHY MUST YOU SCREW ME OVER SO???? Sigh. I understand a 10 mile race might not necessitate a medal, but if I'm dropping $70 on it (which, btw, is $5 more than I paid for the Green Bay Marathon) I best be bringing home some bling. Rant done (for now).
I finished 10.06 miles in 1:24:44 for a pace of 8:25.
Yes, this is an auto-PR as I've (clearly) never raced a 10 mile before. :p
|Field Placement:||1777 / 7017 (25.3%)|
|Age group:||22 – 29|
|Group Placement:||158 / 1029 (15.4%)|
|Gender Placement:||630 / 4311 (14.6%)|
I met up with Alyssa shortly after grabbing my shiz (did I mention sans medal?) and we made a short trip to her car to change clothes and ditch some of my crap, and then it was marathon spectating time! We got to see the wheelchair champion, men's champion, and women's champion come through. We even got to slap hands with the men's champion. Yes, we were slightly giddy over it. :)
Alyssa and I both had the maximum number of racers we could track on our phones, and were beyond frustrated with it's successfulness. We received multiple updates at the beginning of the race, but none after the half marathon mark. We didn't know if our peeps had gotten injured, fell way off pace, decided to stop in at a bar and call it a day (office hubby). We just had to keep staring at the throngs of people for certain colors of shirts. Let's just say that for blind betty over here, that was not a treat. My poor eyes are still killing me!
First to come through was my former manager and studly runner, Angie! She was attempting a BQ, and came up just shy, but still posted a 7 minute PR. Of course I attribute the PR to the fact that she was wearing green, but that's just me, you know? :)
Next up was office hubby Tom! I was concerned because he got hurt mid-way through training and only got an 18 mile long run in about 7 weeks ago. He's definitely athletic enough to take on a marathon, but I didn't know if he would get hurt in the process. After my phone updates failed me, I turned in to major office wife freak out mode. It didn't help that every third dude was wearing yellow, and was so not him. Finally I saw him coming down the way, and I screamed my little face off for him. He gave me a smile slash I-hate-my-life-right-now look.
It was at this point that I had to leave and come to terms with the fact that I had probably missed Julie and Heather. :'( Turns out Julie had come in way under what she was expecting and I did miss her. And based on Heather's finishing time, I'm guessing she was coming down the final stretch as I was heading out. Damn you faulty race trackers! :( Congrats anyway ladies!! (Please check out their reports for their awesome race reports!!)