So while I attempted to talk Matt out of spectating - since I wouldn't be racing it anyway - I also decided to rope Kristin into joining me. Misery loves company!
|Apparently bridges are a selling point for some people.|
Kristin planned to meet me at the house at 4:45am so we could run 5 miles before she signed up the morning of. Then we'd have some time to relax and stretch before the race began at 7am. (Race organizers in Florida need to realize that a marathon/half marathon should start at 6:30 at the latest. Starting after sunrise is asking for disaster.)
|I hate you, Florida. Honestly, the weather is making me really nervous for BDR.|
|After our five miles, the starting line began to fill up.|
|And we're off!|
We saw Matt at mile 3 or so and told him to bring us ice the next time we saw him. The course wound through semi-shaded neighborhoods. We struck up conversation with a few other runners. One of the highlights of the course was around mile 5, when we saw "puppies" playing in a yard that turned out to be baby goats. So cute!
|Still all smiles despite the heat.|
We had agreed from the beginning to walk the bridges' ascents. The first bridge had a slow, long slope, and this was our first really long walk break. There was no shade or protection from the sun here, and very little breeze. I began to play mind games - as a race director, what would I add to the race to make it better?
Watermelon. Fruit kabobs. Misters. Troughs of ice along the route. A giant sun-shade to protect the course.
We ran the descent, but the bridge brought us to blacktop and a long, hot slog along 41. Desperate for water, we veered off course to a Wendy's to see if they were open, but no luck.
I texted Matt:
By the time we got to mile 11 of the race (16 for us), we had decided to run to the start of the next bridge, then walk up, as planned. Around 11.5 a woman on the side of the road was providing handfuls of ice, and we gratefully stuffed our bras again and kept trucking. At this point, I just wanted to be done.
My legs felt fine the entire run, but I was just absolutely sapped of energy from the heat. It was really frustrating; if it were cooler out, we could have killed this run.
|Bridge 1 on the left, bridge 2 on the right.|
At the top, we knew there was only about half a mile or so left of the race, so we ran down and refused to walk from that point on. We saw Matt just before the finish, and Kristin shouted, "There's Matt! I've never been so happy to see your husband!" I heard Matt yell, "You're almost there, I have your Cokes!"
Matt found us and gave us our Cokes. (Mine said "#1 Fan" on it...so sweet.) Coke after a hot, long run is seriously like the nectar of the gods. If I ever had a doubt before, I know with 100% certainty that Matt is the best spectator ever.
We had water and bananas and generally just tried to cool down in the shade a bit.
|Sean had a Go Kart race and couldn't come to the marathon, but he joined us at the end to cheer a bit. It was cool that the top three marathoners were women, but the fact that the lead man had to DNF due to the heat is pretty telling.|
|I had the avocado and bacon skillet with three eggs over easy.|
Wow that was some tough weather! Thank goodness for Matt with ice and cokes! Congratulations on 18 freaking miles!! :) I hope we have cooler weather at BDR too! When is it too early to start looking at weather reports??? Hahaha.ReplyDelete
Weather in Florida is eccentric, to say the least, especially in wintertime. You could check the weather the night before, and it'll be different the morning of! But I think the BDR course will be more forgiving even if it's hot out!Delete
Great job on the half AND the long run! I am terrible about adding miles on the day of a race. If I do it, I have to add on before the race like you did. You had some rough conditions and you got it done. NICE!!ReplyDelete
I joked with Kristin about running 2 more after the race to get an even 20 in...but no way could I really! I have to get them done first; after I cross a finish line, mentally, I'm done!Delete
I'm so impressed that you ran 5 miles before your half marathon! And that you ran in the heat...I wouldn't make it. :)ReplyDelete
It definitely helped to have a buddy...I don't know if I could have done it alone!Delete
Awesome job completing the run despite the heat! You've got this full coming up....this run was just building that mental strength!ReplyDelete
I definitely feel more prepared mentally, that's for sure!Delete
Oof. That weather sounds brutal. I don't know why I'd never thought about drinking a coke after a long run or a race, besides that I'm not much of a soda drinker, but that sounds *amazing*. I'll tell Wes he needs to bring me one after my next race for sure!ReplyDelete
I don't drink soda at all, but I crave it after long runs. I usually don't give in to the craving, but Sunday I just REALLY wanted it and felt like I'd earned it, haha! It was the first thing I asked for after my marathon, too.Delete
Wowsa. Congrats on making it through. Matt is the best spectator ever, and Coke is the perfect thing for after a run like that.ReplyDelete
You're going to be in good shape for BDR!
He seriously deserves some kind of a medal for spectator of the year or something!Delete
I had the same weather in Savannah this past weekend. Congrats on finishing a tough race, it was a brutal one this weekend!ReplyDelete
Ugh, yeah, I heard about Savannah!! This winter is shaping up to be a hot one.Delete
I know that weather HAD to be uncomfortable. Great job on running 18 miles in the heat! You get extra points!ReplyDelete
If BDR is hot, which I really hope it's not, at least it won't be a random hot day after a bunch of cold ones (for us, poor Meg). I like that you started thinking about what you would change about the race to pass the time. I often give myself prompts during long runs to pass the time: if I could start any business what would it be? if I could have any job in the world what would I do? if i could perform a duet with any singer (and actually sound good) who would it be and what song? :D
Uncomfortable is a word for it haha.Delete
If BDR is hot, you're right, we'll have the advantage of having trained in the heat. And I've heard BDR is REALLY good with its fueling stations, so we should be well taken care of.
Those are fun prompts! I've tried to come up with things like that but I usually get bored. I end up just thinking about random stuff or listening to a podcast to help me zone out. I think this time, my mind games were more out of desperation haha.
Just caught up on your posts :) Congrats on running 18 miles in that weather. Everytime I complain about the heat up "north", I think of all my FL friends who train in that weather practically all year long. We have a First Watch by my parents house in Maryland it is good. I laughed about the coke, I asked Cliff for one during MCM :)ReplyDelete
I may complain about the heat, but at least I never have to run in snow...I've never had frozen eyelashes!Delete
First Watch is a favorite...I went to high school with the son of the owner, so we used to eat there for free all the time. I miss those days!
I'm not sure what it is, but Coke really is perfect during a long, hard run or race!
Congrats on a tough race! Running in the heat is SO hard, it really saps your energy. I'm surprised that they didn't start the race earlier than 7! Great job by you and your friend :)ReplyDelete
It's so crazy what heat can do...even though we felt okay physically, it really does just make you sluggish!Delete