a.m. RACE: Grandmas Marathon, 21st place
Well, in absolute terms the race didn't go very well, but in relative terms I fared better than most and came away pleased that I gutted it out Saturday. Sometimes that is all you can do.
On the starting line I knew 2:25-2:26 was not a reasonable go. Warm temperature and high humidity made me feel sticky even at 7:00 a.m. Looking at the cloudless sky indicated that it would probably get worse, not better as we got closer to Duluth. I adjusted my goal to hit halfway in 1:15 and I came in just a under that.
I had some rough patches from 13M to 16.5M and if Katie had been at 16M like she planned I probably would have stepped off the course. I was getting that woozy feeling that precedes a big crash. I was worried that if I went to much further down the course I might do some real damage and have to carted off.
But I rallied going into mile 17 and had a resurgence until 19 miles. On the gradual climbs to miles 20 and 21 I slipped to 6:00 miles and Lemondrop hill put the final nail in the coffin. From there I struggled with 6:30 pace, then 7:00 pace, and so on. The death march was on by mile 23. On the bright side - no walking. Small victory.
I finished up in 21st place, which is more a testament to the effect of the heat on the elite field than anything. The sub-2:30 on Grandma's course still eludes me.
I would like to be back again next year. It will require coming back after the US 100k champs April 10 - a 10 week stretch. Not impossible, but difficult.
As for this year, I still feel fresh mentally and I think my legs will bounce back quickly. There wasn't a whole lot of high-quality work in this training cycle, so I think I have more improvement to come.
This week will be a zero for sure and then I'll ease back into it over the next 2-3 weeks. I think I'll be gunning for a marathon/ultra double this fall. The other option is to run the US 50 mile champs October 3. I have to see what I feel like when I get back into organized running.