Here's our race recap from Monday! I know we've been a little slow with things lately, but we've got a lot going on! With the wedding planning, honeymoon planning, Ryan finishing up another semester of his Masters, and keeping busy at work and all, the blogging has definitely been lax lately. But here we go . . .
So we got to Boston Common around 6:30am or so, before the big crowds hit. There was a line, but nothing too long. Tall Mom (HERE), Ryan and I waited in line together and got on a bus around 7am. The ride seemed reallllly long, and after getting off the bus and strolling around the Athletes Village to find a good Port-a-Potty, we hunkered down by a Gatorade tent to wait. We ran into Steph (HERE) and we all waited together. As all the Wave 2 people were getting called, we said goodbye to Ryan and took off towards the start line. Ryan and Wave 3 followed shortly after.
After making a quick pit stop on the way to the start line, Tall Mom and I got into our corral with 13 seconds to spare. The run started, I felt great, and I was figuring I'd finish somewhere between 3:40 and 3:45, I knew I wasn't in shape for anything faster than 3:40, so I settled in around 8:25 pace. I did not wear my Garmin, and I didn't even pay attention to the mile markers, pretty much running based on how I felt. The sun felt warm, but it felt good. Everything went pretty smoothly, I kissed two girls in Wellesley (making sure to kiss only the girls with the 'I'm Gay' signs, not wanting to make anyone feel uncomfortable). Then at mile 15, I sat down, took my shoes off, put some Vaseline on my feet, and then I just kept running til the end. That was the only point where I stopped running. I did have the OneGoodEarBud music going in my left ear. If you haven't checked out OneGoodEarBud, you should check them out (HERE). For the last three miles, I kept replaying the same song over and over again (Lupe Fiasco 'The Show Goes On'), not sure why, I just liked the beat, and it felt right for the moment. I saw some of my friends spectating on the course at mile 25. My favorite part about the race was my "I <3 Ryan" sharpie-tattoo on my right arm. I crossed the finish line in 3:42:22, and felt fabulous. It was one of the most fun marathons I've run in a while, and definitely the most spectators I've ever seen along the Boston course.
So I didn't really have much expectation going into this race. I had been dealing with some calf issues leading up to it, so I wasn't putting too much pressure on myself. I just wanted to finish with no calf pain. That's all. So I started out pretty conservatively, not trying to push the calf too hard. The first thing I noticed on the course was the MASSIVE amount of spectators. Definitely the most I've ever seen. The first few miles were really nerve-wracking for me, because I kept expecting my calf to start bothering me. It definitely became a real mental thing for me. Even though I hadn't really had calf pain in like a month, I kept EXPECTING it, and it was playing games with my brain. Anyway, as the miles ticked away, I had no calf pain, but still kept going just nice and easy, not pushing it, even walking some uphills so as to not overstress the calf. Things were going great, I kept getting more and more confident with each mile. I started REALLY having fun with things at mile 13. I stopped and kissed four lovely Wellesley girls. That was fun :). I think that's a new record amongst our track club. I met a friend at about mile 16, and she ran with me for about 2 miles. She's great, and she's also my massage therapist, who helped me work out some of my calf issues before, so seeing her and running with her for a bit was fun. She had just run a 7-hr ultra the day before, so she's crazy for coming out and running with me.
Then I got to my favorite part of the race. I had known there would be a beer stop somewhere around mile 20. I was running along, when I had heard a yell from behind me "Who's going to have the 31st beer of the Boston Marathon?" So I stopped in my tracks, and immediately turned around and ran back and snagged not one, but two beers. YUM! I loved it, and the spectators got a kick out of it too. So I toasted to the spectators, pounded my beers, and took off running up Heartbreak. The rest of the race felt like a victory lap, I took it all in, high-fiving all the crazy BC kids. I would encourage their craziness and give them the hardest high-fives I possibly could. It was great. I loved it. Coming down Boylston, I saw my old apartment (right at mile 26), and my old roommate who still lives there, so that was cool too. I then saw my brother who was waiting at like mile 26.1, and he was going crazy too. I then crossed the finish line in 4:35:49, and feeling like a million bucks. While my marathon times have definitely gotten much slower, I've definitely switched to an ultra-mindset. 26.2 miles just doesn't seem that far, and the whole day I was just thinking, hopefully if I'm lucky, in the next couple years, I'll be running 4 times this far. Puts things in perspective.
Anyway, the day was great, hanging with Tall Mom and Bethany, two of the coolest bloggers I know, was a blast. We got our celebratory milkshakes after the race, some random dude on the street gave me pizza (yes, I ate pizza from a stranger), and then we all celebrated with pad thai and beer (except Bethany, who dislikes beer).
Here are some pics from the day:
Engagement Re-enactment in Hopkinton :)
Finish Line Photo (day before the race)
Ryan and Josh Cox (American Record Holder in the 50k, 2:43:45)
Next post, we'll recap the day that Ryan met and ran with his running idol!