Monday, October 14, 2013

Pre-Race: Steamtown Marathon 2013

Spoiler alert: I ran way faster than I thought I would. Finish was 3:37:58. I am over the moon happy with that result, but not 100% happy with my race. Let's talk about why.

Saturday morning I woke up and ran 2 quick miles on the treadmill. Kidding, they were super slow, but they were over quickly. Then we made breakfast and I pounded scrambled eggs and home fries before we hit the road. It was about a 4 hour drive to Scranton, and I wanted to get there for a race discussion put on by the race directors, where they talk about the course. Steamtown is downhill for the first 8 miles and the race directors want to make it very clear that if you run the downhills like a free for all, you will kill your legs and the end of the race will be a special kind of hell. Well, we missed the talk, because traffic on Saturdays is a thing, and I ended up snacking on chips, an apple, and sunflower seeds in the car. We didn't have normal anything resembling lunch until about 3pm. We hit up the expo but it wasn't very big (although it was incredibly well run!), so I didn't feel the need to linger too long. We went to Sheetz (yes, it's a gas station, and yes, they make yummy sandwiches). I got cheddar on wheat with a bunch of veggies, and shared fries and a doughnut with Nick. Yes, pre-race meal of champions right there.

We went to our slightly shady hotel, then I decided if we didn't do something for the next 2 hours I'd just obsess over what I wanted to eat and probably start freaking out. Not good. Instead we went to see Gravity. It was VERY good but VERY stressful. Very intense. Then we went to an Indian place for dinner because I like to live on the edge. The edge being that fine line between finding a bathroom before or after I absolutely need it. That's another spoiler right there. I had baigan bhartha, rice and naan. It was pretty good, and it sat well in my stomach, but I guess I should have known better. Then we got candy and ate a bunch before going to bed. I was on track for about 8 hours of sleep (would have been a pre-race record!) but of course had trouble sleeping and woke up a million times during the night. Oh well.

Race morning
Woke up around 5:45, got a quick shower, banana, and eggs. We stopped at Dunkin Donuts for coffee and headed to the start of the race. It's a point-to-point so it was about a 45 minute drive to the start. I ate some cereal on the way. The drive went flawlessly and we parked easily (we also had the option of taking a bus from the finish to the start). I had some time to mill about and change my mind about my outfit a million times, and then it was time to say goodbye to Nick, get all goose-bumpy during the National Anthem, and hear the cannon start the race... but I'll save that for the next post. Because I have a lot to say about this, clearly.

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