This past Saturday was the Journeys Marathon. My legs have been heavy lately and my last couple runs weren't all that good, but I still felt like I had a PR in me, and after being named Blogger of the Week by Marcy, I knew I had to represent! I mean, if I was going to increase my readership at all, I should at least post something during this momentous honor, right? So I pulled it together and ended up with a great day!
But I'll be honest. I'm really not in the mood for writing a long report. Don't get me wrong...I'm really happy with my run (3:02:21) and happy with setting a 6 minute PR! I really want to write this report using bullet points (just to irritate Glaven, mainly) but instead I'll put a little bit extra work into it and use Picture Points:
The start of the marathon was 26.2 miles northwest of Eagle River, at the White Birch Resort. The resort had opened up their lobby and provided coffee and snacks, which was a big plus considering it was 34 degrees out. I lined up somewhere in the middle, and after a gun sounded (fired by a politician, no less...insert joke here), I was off. Yes, I'm wearing the "ladies ballroom gloves" too.
By about Mile 5, the field of 99 had been spread out so much that I could only see one runner in front of me, and zero behind me. I was running the first half (which contained endless rolling hills) as easy as possible.
At Mile 13, the course leaves the very hilly county highway and starts its 'journey' over a bunch of roads that are all named after lakes. While it is a beautiful area of Wisconsin, these roads were pretty forgettable. With the exception, of course of the runner ahead of me, sporting jean shorts, going shirtless, and letting his shoulder-length gray hear flow in the wind. Parsenn couldn't believe someone was running in that either, and literally never even saw me as I ran past at this point.
After passing Jean Shorts, he said "Congrats. You're now in 8th place." Really? The next time my parents came up to me, I asked them to drive ahead and find 7th place and time the split back to me. About ten minutes later they informed me I was roughly 5 minutes back. Considering it was about mile 21, I was going to need some serious bonking to occur on their part, so I just kept plugging away. I must have been feeling it a bit, too, as my mom asked at one point, "Nic, are you okay?" Between breaths, I managed to answer that I had just completed running 23 miles and still had 3 to go. So no, I was starting to feel a bit tired.
Garmin Snafu (more on that later) I really wasn't sure of my exact time for the event. I didn't know my first half split, but knew I was close to running the second half in under 1:30. At mile 24 I started to push it, seeing if I could sneak in under 1:30...and perhaps break 3 hours. My 24 was my fastest mile of the run (6:40), and just about killed me, so I decided sub-3 would have to wait for Grandma's, and finished strong. The picture above shows zero celebration, and I managed to even keep my eyes shut as I crossed, in 3:02:21.
I celebrated a 6 minute PR with a single beer, and then it was off to the car. My feet were KILLING me. I ran in Brooks T5's...and there simply isn't enough shoe available for a marathon. My right big toe feels like the nail's gonna fall off, and the tops of my left toes are all blistered. The shoes worked well, though: I ran 3 events in them (Milwaukee Marathon, Dick Lytie Half Marathon, and Journeys) and set 3 PR's. Parsenn was also exhausted from a big morning. He needed a nap and a dip in the lake :)
I had told my dad this morning that I wanted to run a PR and maybe even sub-3, and that I think that would put me in position to possibly win an award...and I did! 8th overall, 3rd in the 19-29 age group!
This picture was included for Ellie. She always tells me my (big) ears are "cute" and is especially fond of pictures which seem to accentuate them. I think this one qualifies! Perhaps the ears are the reason for the good run--we had a 10 mph tailwind the whole time :)