It's the year of the pig.
As my previous post said, based on my 3M half marathon results I was expecting 6:59.. and also, my previous marathon I did 7:20:08.
Well, I finished in: 6:44:31.
Pace:15:27, faster then my 3M half marathon.
Personal Record baby! I improved by 35 mins and 37 seconds!
Austin Distance Challenge
10/01/06 IBM 10K (1:33:41, 15:05) challenge rank: 1004 of 1012
10/22/06 Scenic 10 Miler (2:30:49, 14:57 pace) rank: 714 of 718
11/12/06 Bison Stampede Half Marathon (3:44, 17:09 pace)
12/03/06 ARC Decker Challenge 20K (3:19:30, 16:16 pace)
01/07/07 ARA 20 Miler (5:27:20, 16:29 pace) rank: 514 of 515
01/28/07 3M Half Marathon (3:23:34, 15:32 pace)
02/18/07 AT&T Austin Marathon (6:44:31, 15:27 pace)
A lot of it was mind over body. I kept a strong self talk going on "this is an easy marathon, i have a lot of energy". A lot of it was the joy of seeing friends, and having a crowd all the way till mile 9.
Mile 1-10: It was like a big party. I inched my way close to the start line, about a minute from it. I had access to the seeded runner's corral as a bonus of the distance challenge, but it's hard to access it unless you get there really early. I ran past the start line, and found myself running several times, especially when i met friends. The first person I met was Chris Trew! And I ran to catch up with the skipping rope guy. And then there was a co-worker.
At mile 8, my feet started hurting.. and I had to tell myself I felt great. At mile 9, there was a turnoff for the half marathon, and it felt lonelier, as the half is more walker friendly then the marathon. But there was still a decent amount of people around, more then the other longer distance challenge races. The first 8 miles went by fast, but I was doing around 14 min miles.
Mile 10 - 22: I did various mental things, like thanking my body, repeating mantras. And I told myself this is great, and several times I actually believed it. I even had feelings of euphoria. It was awesome. I also met a new friend, Lee, and he kept me going strong. At mile 18 I met Pat (a Cornellian volunteering at the Wellesley volunteer point), and told him that I was ahead of time. I also saw pboyd's friend that I've met several times. And at mile 19, another friend of mine showed up. She showed up to the race just to support me, and walked/runned a bit, and then we saperated. Then I saw Andrea! She had her dog with her. And we yelled happily at each other for a bit. It made me happy to see these people I know. This race is so well supported! And the sense of community, with the police officers and with the strangers cheering you on even when your face is tired. Random food.
Mile 23 - 26.2: Hello wall. If my race was just mile 1 to 22, it would've been the best race I'd done ever. However, around mile 22 I got slower, and Lee went ahead. So I was alone. And Andy was supposed to meet me at mile 23, but he didn't. It was hard for me to keep my mental attitude up and it went negative. I was emotionally, mentally, and physically drained. I slowed down to around 17 min mile at 24, and I had to force myself to go faster. I did, 16 and a half miles for the last two. The last marathon, I think I slowed down till like 22-24 min per mile. But you know, not hitting the wall until mile 22.5? That is awesome for me. Amazing even. I tried not to let Andy not being there get to me, and was only partially successful. I wanted him to be there with me, for this big experience, and I started tearing up at mile 26... which was when I saw Matthew cheering me on. And he came over, and held my hand for a little bit, and sent me off to cross the finish line. I rolled my sleeves, and ran across the finish line. Man. I totally did so good.
Jason found me a bit after, since I had posted an expected 6:59, he missed me at the finish line. But he was there, he is such a great dude. I went to the Stephen F Austin for the distance challenge party, where Andy finally found me. He was in the doghouse for a bit. But he's taking care of me now. My body feels achy. I have a strange patterned sun burn. But I totally pushed myself today, and I rock.