Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Chicago Recap

Miles today: rest (and champagne)
Miles yesterday: 4.0 miles, easy
Miles in 2013: 1024.76

Happy anniversary for my favorite running partner (who is currently losing his mind over the Cardinals)

It is about damn time. It has only taken 10 days to write a little race recap. Like I said, I can procrastinate with the best of them.... although we have been busy stiletto sprinting and celebrating multiple life milestones. More about all that later.

Chicago. Let's start with the good stuff: 16 minute PR. Yeeaaaahhhhh!!!!!

The not as good: I was still a little disappointed with my race. I had a really hard race and I was a little bummed because the conditions were just about perfect for a fast race. Unfortunately my body was not in the mood for a perfect race.

My assigned corral was G, which had a start time at 8:15.

 The weather was supposed to be in the high 40’s/low 50’s for the start of the race. I ditched my long sleeve before the start and ended up checking all my warm clothes, except the gloves. 
The first two miles were super crowded and I had a tough time getting into a rhythm. I knew I was a little over goal pace at the 5K mark, but really couldn’t tell because my Garmin lost reception after the first underground road.  I took down my first Shot Bloks and a little salt around mile 6 right after I ditched my gloves.  We caught up to a few friends around mile 9 and took a few action shots.
(I clearly learned nothing from Miley. Not my best look)

I was feeling strong at that point, and took a little more salt and Gatorade. Unfortunately by the halfway point, I was hurting. Not tired, but achy knees and hips. It was all worse than on my long runs and I had no idea where it came from. I didn’t expect to feel that bad until after 20. I really think this is where some of my training really paid off. I pushed hard, knowing there was still a long way to go. Hard miles passed and I put in my music around mile 16.

The most incredible part of the whole experience was the spectators. I could never imagine that many people stretched across so many miles. I highly doubt I could have run through miles 13-20 without them. So happy, so encouraging, so many high fives, and so much fun. No matter how bad I hurt, seeing them was worth it all.

I felt better as more miles past, but still not great. I took an energy gel around mile 18 and realized I had not been fueling as planned, but instead tried to just stayed hydrated with the Gatorade. Mile 22 was really when it really got hard. I started walking the water stations and took down a banana, which helped tremendously. I knew by my Garmin that I was behind my goal pace, but still on course to blow my previous PR out of the water. Miles 23-25 drug on and on, but closing in on 26 was incredible, no matter how thrashed my legs felt. The slight incline at mile 26 was a fun surprise, but the finish was right there. I crossed the line with a smile and a little prayer of thanks.
All in all, a pretty kick ass experience with some of my favorite people. 

For now I have to get back to is a house divided. GO SOX!!!