We had a fun family race day at Phoenix this year! There was a good group of us running that included both of my brothers, my sister, my hubcap, my brother's friend, my mother-in-law (her first!) and my aunt from Vegas. My dad was in town for the weekend and given the option to hang out with B3 for a couple of hours or run, my dad chose the little B man. They had a great time together.
So the long and dramatically recited story told short, quite early the stars showed signs of having no intentions of aligning. It was kind of a 49:51 train wreck. The :51 part only because I beat PF Chang's by 37 seconds, my goal C, but it was not pretty and I loathed running (ONLY FOR A MOMENT DO NOT FRET).
Baby boy couldn't handle the 3:30am wake up call. Can't say I blame him! That's early even on Christmas. He passed out right after the race and took a three hour nap later -- such a champ!
Ben and I with our coach, Charlie. He paced somebody to a 39:xx 10k and they both placed for masters.
This year the expo was at the Sharaton hotel but in a little ballroom type area. It was crammed in there but it was nice that it stayed open until 9pm so we could wait for rush hour to mostly pass before heading that way. The Phoenix Marathon is really in Mesa, so I'm not quite sure why it's called what it is.
This race requires you to park at the finish and bus to your start line. I am not sure what part of the parking system failed so badly in comparison to other years, but race morning it took us almost two hours to park when we live 35 minutes away. Traffic was at a standstill! We left around 4am and didn't board a bus until 6, when we were supposed to be starting our warm up. And I forgot my bagel. :P
The race started at 6:30 so we should have still arrived in time to have a few minutes to warm up a little. As we exited the freeway on the bus, a police officer said the exit was closed for the race that started soon and the driver was like, "YEAH UM THIS IS A BUS OF RACERS AND WHERE I AM TO DRIVE THEM." But the officer didn't care and made us merge back onto the freeway to go another route. I shall refrain from further sharing my thoughts.
We got off the bus during the national anthem and it was either we A skip our warmup + bathroom opportunity and just start, or B we wait in the bathroom lines and start late (chip timed). I chose A, Ben B.
MAYBE THE STARS ARE JUST MESSING WITH ME.
|^^The course is not pretty (a tour through Mesa), but it is pretty flat so people love it.|
As far as actually racing, I never got to a good spot and by mile 8 I pulled back a little bit because my legs were showing a lot of fatigue already. By mile 9 I could hardly pick them up, and the rest of the race included some of the most miserable miles I have run. And I walked a lot. Dare I say, it was harder than my last 26.2.
I watched my average pace slide into the 8:30s, then pass 8:37 (my B goal) and at mile 12 it was at an 8:45. I needed an 8:45 to hit my C goal so I somehow found it in me to still kick it a little at the end (it was my mile 10 GU kicking in I swear). Heaven forbid I fail all of my goals.
My family all congratulated me because it was a 37 second PR, but although it was a faster race than PF Chang's, it was not better in any other way so I couldn't help but feel frustrated. I trained to have a solid race and that wasn't the case and even a bad race I still had myself at my B goal, so this was definitely a learning and humbling experience.
As for Ben, he started 8 minutes late and his Garmin lost satellite which was frustrating for him to run blindly while aiming for a specific 1:38. He still finished in 1:38:xx so that was wonderful to hear that his journey to a 1:29 is still right on target. He passed me right when I was starting to lose it which was a boost, and he looked great (duh) and strong. He's a talented runner!
Christy Official: 1:54:20
Ben Official: 1:38:26
So what's next? 7 weeks until SL, again with team #runlikehales. It's time to do it all over again because we love it (at least afterwards!! HA), even when it goes terribly wrong. In 10 weeks I have my next shot at 26.2 and this Phoenix half really sliced my confidence for that one, but I still have a couple of months to build it back up.