We were initially supposed to go down and spend the night at my mom's Saturday night and then get up for the race and only have 10 minutes to drive, but we ended up staying home. My mom was in Ocean City anyway, and last weekend was such an exhausting time that it just seemed more appealing to be at home in our own bed. So, we were up at 5:30 to head down to Annapolis for the race.
The other problem was that since we didn't go down on Saturday, we didn't pick up our packets on Saturday, so we had to rush around and get our race numbers when we got there. I ended up leaving my camera and water belt in the car and there wasn't anyone from Fleet Feet taking photos on the course (like Davida did last year), so you won't see any pictures here unless the course photographers come up with some. I didn't see many photographers on the course, though.
I had eaten a lot on Saturday, so I didn't eat before the race. I had brought things to eat during the race if I got hungry, but like I said, I left my water belt in the car, so I didn't have any of it. This was a problem.
The race was HOT and MUGGY. I think the humidity was a bigger issue than the heat. The heat seemed about the same as last year, but the humidity was miserable. Blah. At least the sun didn't come out until the last mile.
I started out running with Debra, Caryn, Sue and Natalie, but they were really pushing and I was not feeling up to par. I don't know what was wrong - lack of food, lack of energy? Perhaps. Heat? Maybe. Dehydration? Possibly. Who knows. I do know that as we went through the Naval Academy, I started falling behind. Yes, we went through the Naval Academy, passing right by where my wedding reception was! That was a bit of a course change from last year.
The bridge wasn't as bad as last year, I think because I was dreading it and I'd built it up in my head. Or maybe because I've been doing hill training like a madwoman and living in Manchester has made me rethink my definition of "hilly." Who knows.
I was miserable for a lot of the race, with numb hands, blisters, nausea and a migraine. Just last week, I'd told Kristy how I carry advil in my water belt because I get migraines, but I'd never gotten one running. Ha, I got one during the race. The blisters were worse because I just ran the 19 miles last week and then went to the podiatrist on Thursday and she lanced them and that was not good right before a race. My fault for not mentioning the race when I saw her. The blisters weren't horrible until about mile 7 and I still managed to hobble in. No runs this week until I can walk without a limp.
During mile 8, when we turned back onto Route 450, I could not be happier because I knew it was just one more hill before the bridge was in sight and I knew if the bridge was in sight I could finish the race. I really thought I couldn't finish.
I managed to keep up the 2:1s, but I let myself walk a bit before the finish line. Then, approaching the finish line I saw Todd and that made me want to run and I sprinted and shockingly found I'd recovered without knowing it and I did a pretty good sprint in.
Not my best race. I ended up getting all teary and choked up after finishing, for reasons that I'll discuss some other time (not about the race specifically, just about my struggles with running this year). I ended up doing 2:12, which is 10 minutes slower than last year almost exactly (and therefore a minute slower per mile). I guess that's ok. Acceptable at least. One thing is for certain... I was not meant to be a hot weather runner.
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