Miles 1-15: Damn I feel really good
Miles 16-20: Hmmm…
Miles 21-26.2: Shoot me now
That pretty much sums up my most recent marathon experience. This time it was the Cleveland Marathon and the route was pretty fantastic: start/finish at Cleveland Browns Stadium and along the way pass the Westside Market, Jacob’s Field (I refuse to call it anything else), the Terminal Tower, the Cultural Gardens and a bunch of other cool sites. At one point we were only a few streets away from 2207 Seymour Ave where those missing girls were found. The roads were relatively well kept and the course was overall flat, yet had a lot of deceptive undulations. Sounds like pretty good running conditions…
So where did the wheels come off?
There’s this woman and her name is Mother Nature. At times she can be a real bitch. On this occasion, she decided that we would be the ants and she would be the little kid with the magnifying glass.
I know that sounds a bit dramatic, but it’s true. It was the hottest day I’ve run in this year (mid-80s) and humid. It’s funny how over the course of 26.2 miles the weather can change so dramatically. Thank God for the organizer’s decision to have hoses spraying throughout the course!
Why do I feel okay with this result?
Let’s be honest, I still kicked ass. For the first time since I’ve started running/racing, I wasn’t overly critical of myself, because I trained really well leading up to the race and I gave my all during. In the end, the deciding factor was out of my control.
Considering I’ve only been running since January 2012, I’m pretty damn advanced. I ran the Manchester City Marathon in 3:47:16 this past November, so I knocked 14 minutes off that. Also, given better conditions, I’d have been in the 3’10ish” range.
Where does that leave me?
My goal it to qualify for next year’s Boston Marathon. That means the Smuttynose Rockfest in October is my last chance to qualify. A flat course during a cooler time of year. That means that it’s all on me to be ready. Between now and then the training will be hellish and my body will hate me, but in the end isn’t that why we runners run?