Don't invite us to your marathon! We sometimes encounter bad luck when we go to a marathon. It could be so hot that they have to cancel the marathon (Chicago), or rain so hard that the course gets flooded out (St. Charles, MO), or a fire on the course requires a last-minute diversion of the race (Cincinnati).
Today it rained. That's not new, we've run in rain lots of times, but today it cooled off when it rained, and the wind increased, so instead of the warmish rain that was forecast, we got a cold rain with strong winds. I had three garments up top, including a wind jacket, and was glad for all of them, but got a little cold anyway. My bare legs, in particular, got cold and they cramped up and wouldn't work as well as they should have. Oh boo hoo, that's the way the marathon ball bounces. No fault of the Med City Marathon.
I enjoyed myself. I finished in 5:07:41, for a pace of 11:44, second of three in my age 70-74 age group, my 73rd marathon since the cancer diagnosis ten years ago. In better weather I might have broken 5 hours, which would be an accomplishment for me these days. Anyway I'm happy enough with the finish time, considering everything.
I did cramp up in the last two miles or so, which is nothing new. In fact I was cramping up at the finish, limping and hopping over the finish mats, with reporters taking video! So I'm surprised to see that my second half marathon took only a minute and a half more than the first half marathon. I suppose I took more or longer porta-potty stops in the first half.
|Billboard near Rochester, MN|
Whining: None! Except for the cramps, just a temporary muscle thing, nothing hurt during the entire 26.2 miles. Yay!
I took six gels along the way, and three or four salt tablets, plus a lot of water, doing a run/walk of 30 to 20 triplets most of the distance. I took off my wind jacket after maybe mile six, but had to put it on again at about the half marathon point when the rain started. The rain was unusually cold and the air temperature dropped a few degrees too, with high winds, so the wind chill dropped into the high 30's for most of the last half. That wind chill calls for more than just shorts on the legs.
Med City Marathon:
It's a good one. I would happily do it again, probably will. Last year the weather was too hot, this year too wet and cold, perhaps next year it will be just right. Much of the race was on trails, with lots of ornamental shrubs, fruit trees, and lilacs in bloom. Beautiful. Some of the run was on roads with a coned-off shoulder or lane, with traffic sailing by, but I never really felt at risk. The expo was moderate in size, but at least appropriate to the size of the marathon. I found lots and lots of volunteers on the course, and police where needed, though my girls did not think that the half-marathon route was marked well enough. I was surprised by the number of spectators, even in the rain. Results were available on line very quickly after the race.
- One runner is running all of Minnesota's marathons. I believe that he said there are 13. That's more than I thought.
- Another runner, doing a run/walk at about my speed, was clasping her hands on top of her head during the walk. When I asked her about it, she said that it helped expand her lungs. I might try that.
- For a while I ran with a guy from Stillwater. We had never met each other - actually still haven't.
- One woman in the half had shaved her head and said something to the effect that she was reinventing herself. She didn't wear a hat, and I bet her head got pretty cold when it started to rain.
- We three stayed at the Doubletree, for a very reasonable rate. We were treated well and the hotel is perfectly situated for the start (busses) and the finish.
- The race starts in Byron, MN, which looks like a very nice small town, located close to Rochester.