When you last saw me, I was a dirty mess from changing two flat tires on my long Saturday ride and was heading into an ice bath to hopefully revive my legs for the Eugene Half on Sunday. Probably overkill, but I stayed stewing in that ice for a full 20 minutes before heading down to Eugene. The kids and I headed out to pick up Kathryn...
...who was running her second full marathon in Eugene and then settled in for some pretty terrific soreness in my hammies and glutes the whole ride down South. After we made it out of the car I started having doubts about Sunday, but I had a great visit with parents and brother and SIL and nephews, however, in the back of mind all I could think about were those two dead legs and how sore and tired they were. I did some stretching and foam rolling and Mom made the perfect pre-race dinner before sending us off to bed.
I woke up to no race day anxiety and with my wheels feeling pretty normal. YAHOO!!!!
The shuttle bus had me at the start line in no time and after lubing up my thighs good and checking my bag, I went wandering around to the pre-race music. The first song I heard perked me right up...(she's going to kill me for posting this, but I can't help myself....it makes me so happy!)
...and I knew Raina must be somewhere close by! This is when the first odd thing of the day happened. Two girls walked by me giggling and one of them looked me dead in the eye and said "I'm a triathlete, too". Weird. Trying to figure that one out, I stumbled upon Raina and we shared our race plans and parted ways so I could go get in one of the many lines for the honey buckets. My line had about 300 people in it and it took me all the way through the national anthem and beyond to get in and out and hop over the fence in time to start running.
My pace band had me at 9:05 m/m to get me across the finish line under 2 hours. The first mile I felt like I was running pretty fast, but I was mostly just dodging people and trying to get in a nice space where people wouldn't trip me up. At mile one I was at a 10:30m/m. Poop. Mile 2 was a little better and then I found my groove and started picking it up. By mile 7 I had a good 2 minute cushion and that was when the jerk behind me thew an entire cup of gatorade on my back. Weird thing number two. I turned around to see what had happened and he just gave me the stone face. So sticky elbows, a see through skirt and gatorade mixing in with my body glide could have ticked me off, but that 2 minute cushion had me way too happy. My original goal had been to pick it up in the last half, but worst case scenario, I know I could hold this pace to the finish and I would have my sub 2!
I don't remember much except that the ending was a lot different than last year. In 2011 as I headed into the final miles, I was able to pick up the pace, pass a bunch of people and kill it once on to the track, but this year, I was pooped. I had given it my all and I had nothing left to push at the end. Unfortunately, Eugene didn't get any photos of me during the run, but Raina figured out how to capture me crossing the finish line from the video. Thanks, Raina, YOU SEXY THING!
I crossed at 1:56:47 and PRd by almost 8 minutes!
Now I'm just wondering what I could do with fresh legs =D
It felt good to keep up the pace and I couldn't be happier! I think my goal after this next 1/2 Ironman is to focus on running and yoga for awhile.
After the race I ran into some TNTers and then made my way to just outside Hayward Field to watch for full marathon friends to come through. I turned around to find Amanda and her entire family standing right behind me so together we got to wait for and cheer on Raina and all the other fast peeps as they came heading through for the final .1 mile of their race.
After Raina came blazing through, Ronda and I caught up with her for a quick hug and picture of all of us PR girls...
...and then I headed home to get some cheers from my family before heading out for pizza and wine - the post race meal of champions!!!
I'm on a nice little running high right now....other than the chest cold I've caught and the fact that my heel is not playing nice. I have a 12 miler on the schedule for Saturday, so we'll see how I feel about this running stuff then :-)