I slept great last night! Truly like a baby! That was nice. We did have to get up at 4:00am new time, though. Ate my fav pre-race breakfast-waffles with pb. Sandy drove..that was big! Usually I drive everywhere ( man thing). As we backed out I went over in my mind if I had everything only to realize later I'd forgotten the accelerade I'd prepared for Sandy to refill me with! Double duh! No biggy..Bass pro powerade would have to suffice.
The turnout for the service was great! I meet bunches of new people from all over the country!
Lots of first timers! Bless 'em...they learned about the marathon today! It's a long way! The talk went good and there was a lot of interaction.
Weather absolutely ideal! 40ish, sunny, breezy, but 82% humidity..no complaints here!
HM and Full start together. I'm careful about being sucked in and I do exactly what I'd hoped for a 9:15 first mile. That settled the matter for me...I was going for the 3:59. I remembered my MP runs and settled in knocking off some good splits. Remember; I am carrying a hand held, 22oz water bottle. This was a good decision! I'm also taking a gel every 30 and salt every 60.
8:54, 8:42, 8:34, 8:55, it was here we had been warned about water in the tunnel we had to go through. " It's only a 1/4 inch deep" they said... you should of heard the cussin' (not from me) as we trekked through the two, three inch deep water. We got our shoes wet! Bad deal.
No matter I kept going. Through the next five miles I passed people consistently. 8:53, (here the leader came by us as this segment was an out and back...unreal! Amazing stride length!)8:40, 9:06, 8:59, 9:04. My Sweetie positioned herself to keep me supplied with my gels and I was coming up to meet her again. There is a slowing beginning...mile 11-9:17, Had to go through the water again! 9:19, 9:27-here at the HM mark I was around 1:58. I felt good! I believed I could do this thing!!
Long uphill-9:51, see Sandy again and get another gel, 9:10, 9:24, I'm really needing a port-a-potty here, now, and how!!! 17 miles a 9:21-2:34:51. I am right on target. "Port-a-potty" I say as I spot one behind the water station. I make a beeline to it..."Oh no!" occupied!! Both of them! I wait, and wait, and wait-finally! Gee, this is a race you know!....Mile 18-11:56, I'm off pace now.
9:33, 9:49- a 3:06:09 at 20. Because I carried my water bottle I only had to stop at a few water stations. I could run through several and this enabled me to pass bunches of people.
So I guess I hit the wall, I tried to push it...only got passed by a couple of guys from here on in...but it was brutal-10:11, 10:56, 12:22, 12:26, 11:40, 11:54, 2:48 final .02.
The finish was awesome! Loud, cheering, my Sweetheart there and friends, cool medal and hat!
I had NO cramps!!! My fueling and hydrating was great. I still believe I can break 4 hours. My feet really began to hurt, bad, because of my shoes being wet...adversity is to be expected.
Right now I am thinking of three changes I need to make, 1) 20 milers, and more of them..2) Diet-I could stand to lose 5 lbs and I can do it if I'll discipline myself, 3) shorter training cycle, I nearly burned out.
I thought about you guys as I raced and knew you were pulling for me to break this barrier. Thanks for your kind words and encouragement...You all are the best!!! Thanks to my Sweetheart, Sandy. She was the best crew a person could have!! So the mission continues! I did improve over my last marathon time, and chopped off 18 minutes from last year so all is not lost. Unofficial I have it at 4:18:38. Peace!