I can only describe that race as TOUGH. No it wasn't hilly or anything, I probably could have handled that better. It was very warm and very humid (almost 90% at start time). Its been a very cool spring, so I hadn't had a chance to train in any weather like that. I got there really early, and it felt nice to walk around and get my packet and do it yourself goody bag. There was nothing great in the bag, some spices(random), a t-shirt, a couple other things. I lined up with about 15 minutes to race time. There were so many registrants (over 8000, although the race shows only 5236 finished the race) that I wanted to get up into my time slot so I wasn't stuck in the crowd going out super slow in the first mile. The National Anthem was sung, and the race started just about right on time. The race started in front of the Trade Center in Boston and there was a nice little breeze off the water.
It was cloudy at the beginning, so I was thankful for at least that. The first 6 miles I felt great. I had some trouble during the last week of training with foot pain, so I was thankful that it wasn't a problem in the race. I started out too fast, which I would regret later in the race. I ran my first 5k in 20:30. That pace is about 40 seconds faster than my planned pace. And it was too fast, especially on such a humid day. I slowed down a bit after I realized I was going too fast, but kept a pretty good pace all the way until I got until past the 6 mile mark. At this point I was almost at the turn around and I realized I need to start walking through water stations to get more fluid in me. Up until then I had run through water stations grabbing water, taking a couple sips and dumping the rest on myself. That wasn't enough. Luckily for me the race had water stations every 2 miles. At that point I was just willing myself to make it to the next water station, and telling myself I could walk for a minute if I could just make it those two miles in between. I did this after every water station from mile 8 to the end. The last 3 miles were really hard. I was pretty dehydrated, I started to get chills even though it was really hot and humid. I really enjoyed running through the city of Boston the last time I ran this race, not so much this time. I really wanted to be done. And I made it, and I still managed to push myself through the straight away to the finish. I have no idea how! It helped that my beautiful (soon to be) sis in law was at the finish line cheering me on. I couldn't wait to see her those last few miles! She has been so supportive and was so proud of me. I seriously scored the jackpot as far as sister in laws are concerned, she rocks! I love you Amanda!!
My time was 1:36:22 (7:21/pace). That is a personal record for me, but I was really bummed that I didn't make my goal time of sub 1:35. I did finish 19th out of 1391 in my age group, so I was pretty happy with that. I know that I gave it all (during training and in my race) that I had and it just wasn't my race. I can't control the weather (although I could have hydrated much better). I learned just how important proper hydration is to your performance during this race, and I'm going to practice that much more during my training runs. I also learned that sometimes even when you think you can't go any farther, you can. You just have to dig deep.
I need to take a moment to thank my coach Tara. I could not have had a better training plan and more support. She was there 24/7 to answer any question or any concerns I had, and she believed in me even when I did not believe in my self. Thank you Tara, you are the best and I love you! If any of my readers are looking for a coach for your next half marathon/marathon please contact me and I will get you Tara's information. She really takes the time to get to know you as a runner and she will personalize a plan that will fit you. She is also a fountain of unlimited running/nutrition information.(she also helped me tweak my nutrition. I can't wait for her to send me my marathon training plan! Next up for me is the Hampton NH Rockfest Marathon on October 2nd and I'm looking foward to the next challenge!
Did anybody else race over the Memorial Day weekend?