Well, it's in the books. I have officially ran my first mini marathon.
My day started by getting up at 4:30 am to get hot shower, dressed and over to pick Joe up by 5:30. We made our way to Joe's parents where we parked my car and met up with Kriston. His parents live about a mile from the starting line so we walked on over and arrived around 6:30 am. It was already getting crowded so we decided to get in the restroom line which took us to a little after 7:00. We then did a quick .4 mile warmup, and headed to the "C" coral to lineup for the start.
It seemed like 7:30 got there pretty quick, and only took us about 6 mins to get to the start line. The first mile was painfully crowded, and we spent pretty much all of it dodging and weaving. The first mile ended up an 8:40.
Mile 2 was more of basically the same with an extremely long straight stretch that just went and went. The most memorable thing other than that straight stretch was some idiot that just kept yelling "Free it up, I thought you all were runners". If you're so damn fast that you need everyone to get out of the way, start your dumb ass up at the front of your coral rather than the back. Second mile was 8:29.
Mile 3 included the entrance to the park. We were starting to get into a few smaller hills. They weren't to big, but enough to remind you of were you were headed. Still feeling pretty good through here, and mile 3 ended up being an 8:49.
Mile 4 was the first big hill on the south side of the park. I could feel it, and so were a lot of other people, and I was again dodging people that weren't ready for the hill. I ended up finishing mile 4 in 8:55 still feeling pretty good, but wondering if I had been running to fast to early.
Mile 5 is mostly a few rolling hills, and I fell in with a small group here that were running about the same pace. I finished 5 in 8:39.
Mile 6 is the final push up the final hill out of the park. It is always a bear, and today was no different. I powered on up it trying to keep my effort consistent, and actually felt pretty good. I finished 6 in 9:03.
Mile 7 I was thinking OK, its all cake from here. I survived the park, but then I began to realize that for the heat, I think I started to hard. I was taking plenty of water, and powerade, but I was starting to feel it. I ended up finishing 7 in 9:18.
Mile 8 I sort of started falling apart. I was just feeling exhausted, my legs didn't want to keep going, but I did my best, and slowed my pace a little more thinking I would recover and be good. I finished mile 8 in 9:52.
Mile 9 included the entrance to Churchill Downs, and I wasn't getting any better. I actually had to stop and walk a bit before I even go to the entrance. I started running again through the tunnel, and ended up walking again as soon as I got to the infield. It did give me a chance to look around, but I would have preferred to be running. Mile 9 finally ended at 10:39.
Mile 10. All the walking through Churchill Downs did give me a chance to recoup a bit, and when I go to the next water stop, I drank on, and dumped a second on my head. This mile gave me a little more hope of finishing this race as I ended up finishing it in 9:24.
Mile 11 was pretty much all down hill, and you would have thought that would have helped. Well, you would have thought wrong. I was exhausted, and wondering if we would ever actually reach Breckenridge. The torture that was mile 11 finally ended at 10.55.
Mile 12 finally came, and I was actually beginning to feel like I might actually reach the end again. It was still mostly downhill, and I actually improved slightly over the last mile. It came to an end at 10:42.
Mile 13 included the split of the mini and the marathon. Mini to the left, and marathon to the right. If I had needed to turn right, I would probably have just sat down in the middle of the road and cried. I was never so glad to make a left turn in my entire life. I knew I was getting close, and I found a little something extra, and finished 13 in 10:10.
The home stretch was such a grand sight. We made that final turn and I could see the finish line. I wanted to sprint to the finish, but that was simply not an option. I had to settle for a lackadaisical jog/stroll/run sort of approach. It wasn't pretty, but I got there, and finished in a official 2:09:23.
It was about a full 10 mins slower than I had hoped for, but I chock some of that up to higher temps, and some up to inexperience. This was my first, and it gives me a starting point. A building block if you will. Now I have something to build upon.
I just want to thank all the members of RunTheVille, you have all helped me in my training with ideas, motivation, and all around support. That includes the blogs of Joe
, Brittany (aka BBmac, aka "BB")
, and A Viking Running