Boston Marathon - RunMarathon

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Boston, Massachusetts
United States
Boston Athletic Association
58F / 14C
Total Time = 3h 23m 17s
Overall Rank = 5762/24338
Age Group = F45-49
Age Group Rank = 51/1611
Pre-race routine:

Left on Friday night on a red eye, slept about 3-4 hours of the trip, but rested for the most part. Arrived in Boston at about 8am and the hotel let us check into our rooms. Score! Debated sleeping but decided we should shower, find food and then hit the expo. Had a good brunch at Charley's saloon off Boylston.

Bib number pick up went smoothly and the official finisher's shirt fit perfectly. Took a picture in my new shirt and put it away to wear after the race.

The expo was incredible. It was seriously the best expo I have ever been to. Loved all of the free goodies and just the general vibe...all of these fit looking runners! Oh, somehow Kathy saw the RunDisney booth with all of the medals and started chatting up the good folks from Disney and it appears I will be doing the Goofy challenge next January. What just happened? But it was a huge discount! Sorry, let's get back to the RR. (or the build up to the RR)

Two hours later, we were both fading and our wallets were quite a bit lighter, so we walked back to the room and crashed. Well, one of us crashed, the other stared at the ceiling full of excitement and started visualizing crossing the finish line that we had just walked under!!!

So glad we had an extra day before the race to be tired and drowsy. The next day there were a few things to do at the expo, then we had lunch on Newbury Street (such a cute shopping area!) and then it was pretty much hang out at the hotel and watch a movie on the iPad...met our friend, Joe, from SF in Little Italy for an early dinner and had a great time exploring up there. Dinner was amazing, at a little place called Marco's, seated us right at 5:30pm, excellent fresh pasta, I would definitely go back! Had a little gelato as we walked back to the "T"...made it to our hotel without incident.

Got to sleep at about 9:30 and started to think about running the Boston marathon! Up at 5am, went down and had some oatmeal, a bagel and a banana. Perfect. Showered, dressed, bathroom, DONE! At 6:30, I left the hotel and headed for the buses which were about a ten minute walk away. Stood in a long line but met some amazing women. I was adopted into the North Carolina crowd and we all had a great time huddling up for warmth and talking about running, life and anything to keep our minds off how dang cold and windy it was. Didn't get on the bus until 7:40 or so, which some people were getting nervous about. I didn't worry, because I figured the less time sitting out in that cold field in Hopkinton, the better. The bus was so warm and it was pretty slow getting down there, close to 8:45 we finally got there. Plenty of time for one potty stop and as soon as I finished, they called our wave!!! Excellent timing, stripped and dropped off the sweat bag and we all started heading to the start line. So excited!

Event warmup:

Not sure how the whole corral system was going to work, so just got up into my corral and did a few jumping jacks and heard them count down the start of our wave. Corral one was off, and about 45 seconds later we were moving forward and crossing the start line!!! Woo hoo, smile for the cameras!
  • 3h 23m 17s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 07m 46s  min/mile

The first six miles were mostly downhill and I really had to hold myself back. I really wanted to try to run the first half conservatively and have energy and strength for the last 8 miles. Knowing hills would be coming late was somewhat intimidating, but I had practiced hills at home and knew I had the ability to tackle them if I wasn't completely trashed by then. So, sticking to the 7:30/mile plan +/- 5 seconds was actually working out well. My effort felt very strong and steady through the first 15 miles.

I had this weird stomach thing that lasted from the start to about mile 8...not a cramp but just a weird tightness that I just tried to breathe through and then decided to ignore, as it wasn't affecting my ability to run. I took my gu at 45 minutes and it gave me a little boost and after about 2 more miles the stomach thing went away.

I was super conscious of hydrating as the wind was behind us and there were points where I felt very hot, but I knew that the air temp was only in the 50's. Usually I take a few swigs every 15 minutes but I switched that to one swig every 5 minutes as I was feeling thirsty but not bloated.

Coming into Wellesley, there is a little hill you must crest and it was here that I saw Team Hoyt!!! So many of us were shouting cheers for them, it was very inspirational. I got goosebumps and suddenly there was the top of the hill and I looked down to see a huge row of screaming girls holding up all kinds of signs. "Kiss me, I'm from California!" "I won't tell your wife!" "Besa me!!!" No, I didn't stop, it looked pretty precarious over there! That little stretch went by fast, I looked at my pace and saw a 6 in front and slowed WAY down, hello!

Checking my pace at the halfway point, I was happy to be right at 1:38:30, I wanted to be closer to 1:40, but I figured the wind was behind us, maybe everyone will be a few minutes faster today. It was here that I had some shoelace issues, had to stop and lace up and then it was too tight, had to stop again and fix it. I figure I wasted over a minute on the darn shoelace, but it gave me a chance to take a deep breath and get back on my merry way. This was so much fun with all of these crowds, I was really enjoying the race, but we hadn't yet hit the toughest part of the course.

We hit the mile 16 marker and I was just over 2 hours which I was absolutely thrilled, but it was here that we had the first little incline over the freeway thingy, and it wasn't too bad. I stayed along the right side of the road for the next few miles and just kept my eyes on the white line. The hill went by quickly and I wanted to look for Mightymom at mile 18.5 and so I was happily distracted when we hit the flatter part before the next big hill. And I looked left and right and heard "KIM,KIM,KIM!!!" and there she was!!! Had a chance to wave and smile for the camera and that really gave me a huge boost! Thank you, Christina!

The next few hills were not bad, I had expected a steeper grade, I kept thinking of "eating hills like candy" or "SF girls KNOW hills". You guys who gave me those quotes know who you are! I powered up those hills at a nice 8 min/mi pace and felt awesome!

I was shocked to see the big blow up sign that said "The heartbreak is OVER!" when I did, because I kept waiting for one more hill. I was so happy here, because I knew I would finish this race and the way I was feeling right then, I knew I could have the race of my life if I could keep everything together.

And then at mile 22, I felt this weird hip pain on my left side. wth? I don't have a "hip thing!" NOOOOOOO. I did a gait check, counted my cadence, tried to breathe through it. Weird! Still have this hip thing. It wasn't really affecting my ability to keep a 7:40-ish pace but go any harder and the hip thing was more noticeable. I look up and I see that crazy Citgo sign in the distance and I think, just run like this for a bit and maybe it will go away, and I was still keeping pace with the people around me, but it was worrisome. My quads were painfully numb but I knew I could run the last 5k this way, so I was still soaking up the energy of the crowds.

We hit the 40k which signaled 1.4 miles to go and I start to feel that wicked right calf cramp that I got at my last marathon! OH, NOOOOO! It seized up and I literally had to stand off to the side and stretch it out. People were yelling, "don't stop, you are almost there", well I wish I didn't have to stop, darn it!!! I took my last gu, and drank a bunch of gatorade at the next aid station and just prayed. Yes, I prayed to please let it pass, I was close to my sub 3:20 or at least 3:20:59!!!! I tried to run, but it hurt so much to land on my right calf. I hobbled/ran/stretched for about a quarter mile...and then it slowly started to dissipate, but I couldn't go as fast as I wanted to go! Frustrating!!! But the saving grace is that it happened so late in the day.

The crowds along that stretch were so incredible, they really propel you forward. We hit the little underpass thing and I knew I was going to at least have a PR and I was really happy about that. We hit Hereford St., and it was oddly quiet here, I had a chance to reflect on my journey to this point and I shed a few tears...not from the calf at this point (although it was still killing me) but more from what I learned about myself, staying positive through adversity, not being afraid to succeed...and then BOOM, the silence was over!

We pop out onto Boylston and it's like the Olympics!!! The streets are lined with screaming, cowbell ringing spectators and I could see the beautiful finish line! I looked to the right, because Kathy said she'd be there and lo and behold, there she is with her crazy orange T-shirt, that she spray painted with "Go KIM, Go!" and she is standing up on a window ledge, perched like a crazy person! I waved, blew her a kiss and all of the pain went away for the final 400 was pure bliss to cross that finish line!
What would you do differently?:

I was so well prepared for this race, both from a physical and mental standpoint. I felt like I made good adjustments with my hydration. I ended up drinking 6 full 12 oz bottles and maybe 8 oz of gatorade at the end there.

I could not fend off the ugly calf cramp and have no idea what that hip thing was about, maybe if I could have avoided that I would have had my perfect race, but I feel really good about it.
Post race
Warm down:

Walked through and got our mylar blanket, medal, drank a recovery drink and tried to eat some of a bagel but my stomach was not happy with that and then they couldn't find my sweat bag. Darn! Didn't want to wait around so went and found Kathy, walked the one short block to the hotel and did my crazy ice bath. And showered, what a glorious shower!!! And the best cup of coffee, EVER!!!

Went back and they had my crazy sweat bag with my phone! Thank goodness. It was good to keep moving.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

hip thing and calf cramp!

Event comments:

We came here and I was certain that it would be my first and last Boston. I am so honored to have run the Boston marathon but in the back of my mind now, I really want to go back and crush the last 3 miles of that race!!!

I should have booked my room before we left!!! :)

Last updated: 2010-10-06 12:00 AM
03:23:17 | 26.2 miles | 07m 46s  min/mile
Age Group: 51/1611
Overall: 5762/24338
Performance: Good
mile splits 7:37/7:13/7:14/7:04/7:29/7:22/7:23/7:30/7:30/7:34/7:47/7:25/7:32 7:39/7:33/7:29/7:46/7:47/7:39/7:58/8:10/7:40/7:46/7:56/7:43/8:34(damn cramp)/8:04
Keeping cool Average Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 5
Physical exertion [1-5] 5
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities:
Race evaluation [1-5] 5