not my greatest result, but i finished.
distance: 26.2 miles
here’s my weekend (and race) overview.
friday: race expo
on friday, my mom and i went to the race expo at the st. paul rivercenter. parking was a huge pain (it’s still “construction season” in minnesota).
the expo was small but pretty great. when we walked in, we were first greeted with free caribou coffee.we walked to and looked at every single booth. i got a free nuun tablet for sunday (i forgot to bring mine from home) and some free larabar samples (especially apple pie flavor).
i bought a quarter zip sweatshirt, a headband for sunday that would cover my ears (i don’t usually need to cover my ears during training), and a t-shirt. i also got some free bumper stickers, cups and stickers that say “run nice” and “nice run” (promoting next year’s race).
my parents and i went to the twins game friday night. the twins lost, but we had a great time.
i went for a 1 mile “shakeout” run on saturday morning to test how my body handles the cold weather (and boy, that cold weather was amazing).
my parents and i got my pre-run food (chipotle burritos) and then drove the course. it was incredibly helpful to see exactly where i would be running, and also provided nice memories for the next day (like my dad saying jokingly, “and then you’ll wait at this light for 30 minutes,” about a stoplight that never seems to change).
we ate pasta for dinner and played a couple games of “clue”, and then off to bed.
compared to california races, this one seemed to have a late start time. i got up at 5, left for the start line at 6:45 and the race started at 8 am.
the race started near the in-progress new vikings stadium. there weren’t large gaps between corrals. after the elites started, the announcer said “go” and we just went.
we ran in downtown minneapolis to the basillica and walker sculpture garden. then we headed to the lakes. at about mile 3, my knee started hurting (what i’ve been fighting almost all training). i took my “back up advil” at mile 3.5 and hoped that it would kick in. instead, my achilles tendon also started hurting. i knew i had to make it to mile 4 to see marshall (and his mom) and mile 8 to see my parents.
seeing marshall and my parents made the race so much better. i wanted to stay and talk (and continue to thank them), but i knew i had to keep going.
there weren’t as many fans as the LA marathon, but the fans seemed more genuine. instead of just clapping, they’d smile at me, try to figure out what to call me (my only distinctive mark was my taped up knees, so a lot of them called me “knees” or “tape”), and tell me how proud they were or how amazing i was. there were the usual signs (worst parade ever, i trained for months to hold this sign, hurry up so i can drink beer) but also some new ones. my favorites were:
- never give up, never surrender. (a quote that i also wear on my road id)
- oh good for you. (a very minnesotan phrase)
- if trump can make it to the primaries, you can make it to the capital. (the race finishes at the state capital)
they had a “alarc wall” set up around mile 17 that we ran under, before the steep incline started, but i never hit my personal wall. i think it’s because i kept the pace so slow due to my knee and never pushed my endurance.
mile 17 on was pretty much uphill until mile 25. while i was being passed by almost everyone for the first 13 miles, i kept running at my slow pace (afraid that if i stopped, i wouldn’t want to start again) and started passing a lot of people.
the last 1/2 mile was all downhill. it was beautiful and scenic and i regret not taking a picture. i started sprinting at mile 26 and crossed the finish line in 5:09. i knew at mile 18 that i wouldn’t break 5 hours again and was crushed.
my parents were right at the finish line and i quickly dumped my now empty camelbak with them. i got my medal, blanket, summit beer and “finisher” long sleeve shirt, and then met back up with them.
it was my first marathon with people waiting for me at the finish line. i loved having someone to run to and a reason not to stop.
after the race, i showered, ate some chinese food, and then headed over to a family friend’s house to celebrate with two other finishers. we even had cake with our names on it!