The course - bad: The course was not "closed" which I disliked heartily. At every intersection there were police officers and Marines directing traffic (good!) and often letting cars go between clusters of runners (bad!). I saw one car nearly hit a runner as the driver pulled into a parking lot. In addition to being unsafe, it was totally gross (think lots and lots of truck exhaust).
Also, I don't think I've ever seen a race with less crowd support. (Note to spectators - You're already there. It doesn't cost you anything to cheer for everyone. Seriously.)
The course - good: The course was flat. Not pancake flat (there were a few steep little hills here and there) but the lowest elevation was about 10' and the highest was about 85'. Flat. There were also aid stations every 2 miles or so. I always run with my own hydration, but it's nice to know course support is there if I need it.
Also, for those who did cheer, I saw some absolutely fantastic signs, including:
|"Stop reading this sign and keep running!"|
|Does anyone make race photos look good?|
The DJ at the start/finish area was also pretty awesome, playing a good mix of pop and oldies. Hubby and I even danced to a couple of songs (that was while the adrenaline was still working, I fell sound asleep once it wore off).
My race: I did exactly what I set out to do -- 10 minute miles through the entire race. It was not my best half ever. I finished squarely in the middle of the pack. However, after struggling with weeks of hip pain and deciding at the last minute to wear brand new shoes on race-day, I was pretty sure I'd have a bad race. So finishing strong felt great.
I filled my iPod with a couple of hours worth of songs, and focused on each little stretch of road in front of me. The Dog Days Are Over got me through more than a couple of miles... Run fast for your mother fast for your father...
I only really struggled though the last couple of miles (but if it's not hard at some point, you aren't trying hard enough).
I do wonder, though, if there was something in my coffee this morning, because I felt absolutely no pain. Tight lungs, fatigued muscles, but no pain.
And then... I took my new shoes off...
Hello bloody blisters!
My feet look like they went through a meat grinder! (I will spare you the pictures.)
What I wonder is: How the F*** did I not feel those during the race?!? I knew wearing new shoes was a risk. But I didn't feel the blisters at all during the run.
My feet hurt like hell now and I'll be walking around in flip-flops for at least a couple of days. But during the race - not so much as a tickle.
Maybe the new shoes weren't such a bad idea after all?
How many of you think that as long as your race went well, the pain afterward is just a temporary annoyance?
C'mon. Be honest.