Making my way into the corral was intimidating. The runners surrounding me looked like speedsters who meant business. I had only made it into the sub-seed corral by the skin of my teeth, so I knew my place…..all the way in the very back of the corral.
Otherwise it felt like any ol’ race. The race started at 7:30, and it only took about 20 seconds after the gun went off before I crossed the starting mat. From that vantage point, you really don’t get a feel for the magnitude of the event.
My performance was nothing noteworthy. Official gun time, 45:45. It felt as steamy and miserable as I imagined it would be.
Half marathon pace seemed like a reasonable expectation for the day. According to my watch I averaged 7:12/mi which was in my target range. It felt considerably harder than tempo pace however, and I started feeling a bit dizzy halfway through. From mile 3 onward, I was walking through every water stop. That’s something uncharacteristic of me to do, but did I mention it was friggin’ hot?!
A highlight of the race was finally meeting Shelby . We’ve “known” each other online for a few years now. Somewhere around the start of the second mile I spotted her in the crowd, and rolled up next to her to say hi. Ok, I guess that sounds kind of internet stalkerish, but whatever. I’d seen enough pictures on her blog to recognize her, and I knew we were aiming for a similar finish time. I also bumped into a fellow Team MARATHON Bar member a little later on. It’s a small world after all……
After I crossed the finish line I grabbed a bottle of water and collected my t-shirt. I spent about 15 minutes soaking up the scene in Piedmont Park , then started jogging the 2 miles back to my car.
Easy peasy. I was walking through my front door by 9:30. We made that flight, no problem, and made it to NY in time to join the party.
I couldn’t have asked for a better orchestrated event (minus the sweltering temps).
Have you ever gotten yourself anxious over something and it defied your expectations?