Tuesday, June 18, 2013

2013 Cleveland Marathon Race Report - Feeling Hot, Hot, Hot!

I'm a little late with this post but better late than never! So as I revisit the Cleveland Marathon race day in my mind I have good memories. It was a fun race - very well organized and a great turnout. The weather was perfect for the first hour or so and then it definitely heated up!


Steve and I were up at 5 to get ready. Our plan was to be on the road by 5:45 to get downtown to park by 6:15. We feasted on some waffles and peanut butter with honey and watermelon along with some coconut water. Once we parked it was time to chug some Biotta beet juice for the extra endurance boost! We parked about 1/2 mile from the race and used the time to get a warm up in. As usual I needed to use the restroom before the start. So we made our way to the stadium to use the facilities and lined up together around 6:50 for the start at 7. I love this race because you can always just feel the energy bubbling as people sing along to that song "Cleveland Rocks" from the Drew Carey show!

Start & First Half:

The start was fast and fun. Steve wanted to run the first mile or so together, which put me a little ahead of my planned 8:30-9 min pace but it was nice being close to him for a little bit. After that he took off and I settled into my groove. There was a good vibe as we ran through the city. My pace was pretty much on target and I felt very good through the first half. Around mile 7 or 8 it got as little warm so I tossed my singlet and ran in the sports bra. Needless to say I did have some fun tanlines after the race! I liked the course all except that we literally ran with the halfers almost to the 13 so it was a bit tough mentally as they were turning left to run their last 1/2 mile or something and we were turning right to start the second half. My half time was 1:55ish with my plan being to finish a tad under 4 hours.

The Back Half:

Running with my friend Andy towards the finish!
The back half started off pretty well. It was getting hotter but was tolerable. I made friends with a guy named Andy and ran about 7 miles with him before I faded a little. Right before MLK I started to cramp a little. I remember glancing at my watch around mile 19.5 so I stopped to do a Powerbar double latte gel and get a sip of water. This kicked in shortly and I was back on track. The breeze running through the park was welcome. I really tried not to stop and walk. I did pretty well until mile 22 or 23 and then I really felt hot and fatigued. From there on it was really a run/walk. I didn't want to push past my limit as there were plenty of people getting medical attention from heat exhaustion. I made sure to take a sip of water at every stop since I knew it would be a hot race. It felt like the last mile would take forever and I caught up to my friend Andy so we were able to push each other a little at the end.

The Finish:

Happy to finish!
Crossing the finish line of my second full marathon was a great feeling even though it was a little slower than I wanted. My time of 4:09 was still better than my first marathon despite the heat. I was very happy and proud to have raised over $1000 for my friend Liz Ferro's nonprofit Girls With Sole by running this race. Knowing that my sweat and pain would help these young girls really helped me push through some hard times.

Post race with my love!
My friend Mickey Rizmek from Northcoast Multisport was there and gave me a hug and Steve cheered me on as I finished. We also ran into our friends Amy and Chris who had run the half. I was tired and ready for some post race food and beverages! After downing a chocolate milk and some snacks we headed to the car to get changed and headed over to the Winking Lizard for pizza and a tall IPA to wait for my longtime friend Jill Earle as she finished her first marathon. We met up with Jill and her friends at Flannery's for another beer and then headed to home sweet home for some well earned rest and some Normatec and Compex recovery!
Post race with Jilly!

I am looking forward to running my third marathon in the fall and hopefully it will be a little cooler and I'll get that sub 4 hour PR!

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