But first, let’s back up! The night before, Irving and I went searching for some Italian food to carbo load with. There were plenty of Mexican restaurants, but Italian was surprisingly hard to find in Phoenix! We ended up at a great place called Nello’s.
It was delicious! The pasta was homemade and cooked al dente.
GU and Shotbloks: check
Garmin and Ipod: check
Fuel Belt: check
Fuel Belt Bottles: uhhhhh…. NO CHECK!
I totally forgot my Fuel Belt Bottles…. If it wasn’t on my list, it didn’t get packed! Next time, no beer while making packing lists.
But the race must go on –with or without my liquid energy. Luckily, I knew they had Cytomax and water on the course, and that’s what I run with anyways, so of all things to forget, this was probably the best case scenario. In the past, I’ve forgotten my Garmin, and that’s the worst!
I slept fairly well, but still felt a little groggy in the morning. I knew I’d be fine once I started to get excited about the race. I wore my Boston Marathon shirt to give me a little extra confidence boost. haha I also rocked the Zensah compression socks. This will have been my first race running in those.
We parked at the golf course club house where Irving was going to play golf, and then I walked to the shuttle busses across the street. The line looked long, but I was able to get right on a bus. It took about a half hour to get to the start line, but it was so cold, I was thankful for heated transportation.
I met up with some Team in Training friends and we chatted for an hour or so.
Once we passed the start line, I started running. At first I was annoyed that I’ve already lost 35 minutes behind the first half-marathoners before we even started, but then I realized what a great perk this was to the race. It was SO nice to be with the same group of people at the same pace for the whole run. I really appreciated that. I didn’t get trampled by fast people, or slowed down by walkers. It was just right. I was very thankful that they did this. Just one more reason why “Rock N’ Roll” marathons get it right.
I hadn’t really trained properly, so I just ran when I felt like it and walked when I had to. I definitely ran more than I walked, and that was pretty much my goal. I had no real time expectations. I rocked out to my music, and muted it during the bands along the course.
I cruised through the first 8 miles or so. I got into a rhythm of running/walking intervals. My body was in tune with my mind, which is sometimes the hardest part to overcome.
For the most part, the race was a point to point course down one main road with very few deviations. It was starting to get a little boring until we finally got some glimpses of the beautiful Arizona scenery.
My knees were starting to get crunchy around mile 11 with two miles left to go. I’d start running and my knee cap felt like it was going to fall off. But then I realized that it only hurt when I jogged, not when I was running full out strides. So I started sprinting pieces of the last two miles.
I looked down at my watch and saw that I could break 3 hours if I kept up the pace. My best time was 2:40 and my worst was 3:13. Coming in under 3 hours would put me right in between (not bad for a bad training season!)
I crossed the finish line officially at 2:56:44.
Here’s the stats:
I gathered up all the post race swag: frozen yogurt, cytomax, fruit, pop chips… and headed out to find Irving. He was still playing his last hole on the golf course, so I plopped down on the nice grass on the course (the golf people didn’t seem to mind.)
Zensah Socks: huge success. My shins didn’t hurt at all during the race.
I entertained myself by taking self portraits.
Mile 1 – 11:28
Mile 2 – 11:49
Mile 3 – 12:11
Mile 4 – 12:53
Mile 5 – 12:36
Mile 6 – 13:53
Mile 7 – 14:23
Mile 8 – 14:24
Mile 9 – 14:33
Mile 10 – 11:38
Mile 11 – 15:05
Mile 12 – 13:26
Mile 13 – 12:23
Mile 13.56 – 12:15
When we got back to our hotel, Irving went out to play another 9 holes of golf. I, on the other hand, chose to take a two hour nap.
Later that night, we went to a blogger meetup that was organized by Skinny Runner. If you don’t already read her blog, you should.
The food was fantastic. They claim that everything on the menu is under 475 calories.
After a couple hours of reading by the pool (I’m already half-way through Meb’s book!) we grabbed lunch and began the 6 hour drive back to LA.
Just a few weeks until the Surf City Half Marathon!