I just got up from a nice little nap and, by your comments it seems you all think I ran a marathon today. It was a nice nap and I don't remember anything from before that.
No, wait a minute. My legs are telling me something. What's that? Oh, yes. My apologies. My quads want you to know I ran a lot of friggin' HILLS today. My scalp wants you to know it was friggin' sunny and hotter than blazes out there.
It was a very pretty race course, for the most part. Even the hills. The race was better tended to by the volunteers only after the marathon and half-marathon runners parted company at the fourth mile. They had some water and Powerade issues but I lived through them.
I took it really easy through the first ten miles. I felt strongest from miles 10-16 within which I was greeted twice, "Proud not Loud," by Mrs. T who had everything I wanted in her tote bag. The race temps were not even chilly at the start and it only got worse. I was eternally grateful for the hand towels wet and wrapped in some medical cooling packs that our hostess provided. The two of them were at miles 14 and 16 and commented that I looked good, meaning I was running up the hills and lots of others were walking. At that point they were right. I didn't walk any parts of a hill until Mile 21. Damn that Highland Avenue.
Running in the shady residential areas was tolerable. Once we got back from Decatur and into the city of Atlanta, the sun was beating down and very sapping. My splits dropped quickly from 10:45 pace to about 13:00 over the last five miles. Coming down Peachtree Street was a good finish because the skyscrapers provided some shade and the crowds were pushing us.
I watched my goal time of 4:40 slip away and turned my attention to a PR of anything under 5:00. Mission accomplished by five minutes. Given the weather and the course I suspect everybody was struggling. The winner crossed in a taxed 2:19 so I do believe we could all have done better on a different day.
Nevertheless, I am pleased. All my body parts work. I only had a few foot cramps towards the end of the race and worked through them with no further issues.
Thanks to those of you out there in bloggy-land who followed along. The technology for race tracking is pretty neat. Your attention kept me going.