I arrived at the parking lots extra early to avoid all the traffic to the race. This is one of the biggest races in our city so the roads leading to the area get jam packed. The start line and finish line were about a mile away from each other so I planned to park near the finish line and walk to the start line. Lucky for me along my walk to the start line I hit a large parking lot that was full of portable restrooms. This came in handy because the portable restrooms near the start line had a line a mile long and I doubt all of those runners started on time. Once I used the restroom I headed to the corals to meet up with our friends. We chatted a bit then we all headed off to our corals to get settled for the race.
Once we were off I felt really good, I planned to hang around the 2 hour pacer for a few miles and then start to peel off from there. Well that lasted all of a half mile, I got tired of being trapped behind people so I started to inch away from the pacer. There were A TON of people at this race and I was dodging slower runners all day.
Miles 1-6 went great, I was feeling really good and I was holding a pace between 7:40 and 8:00. Then the lack of training over the last week took it's toll on me. The wheels started to fall off after mile 6. I was totally in the pain locker, my foot was hurting, my legs were aching, and I was simply trying to keep moving forward.
I cant tell you how happy I was to see the finish line. There was no final kick, no finishing strong, it was basically a crawl to the finish line. My official time was 1:51:34 which ended up being an 8:34 pace. I spent the rest of the day nursing my wounds because that was a brutal run for me.
Major take away, I don't like hitting these runs solo. Having your own cheering section or someone to celebrate with at the finish line is a great feeling. So I don't plan on races without Mrs. Schlub either running as well or coming along with me for moral support any time in the near future.
Secondary take away, my foot was aching on and off throughout the run so I don't think that PF was fully healed. I had minimal running last week in an attempt to have a fresh foot for this run and it made it a really tough day. The big test will be how my foot feels tomorrow.
Plan is to take the next week off, see how my foot feels, then make a decision on what I'm doing for the marathon at the end of February. I don't want to just finish the marathon, I want to properly train, run a strong race, and finish without thinking I'm going to die. So we will see how things go this week.
How long does everyone typically take off from running after a really tough race??