the alarm went off at 4am sunday to get us down to huntington beach on time for megan and kasey to start the full at 634am. once we had my forgotten sports bra crisis averted (thank godness megan brought extra), we were out the door by 430a and at the donut shop down the street not long after. ive never had donuts before the race, but the little donut holes we had were delicious. see megan and kasey took off at 634a, i didnt take off till 754a and we were up at 4am, fueling was going to be interesting to say the least.
traffic was a breeze and we were at tinas hotel just a few minutes after we said we would at 545a. the full girls were starting to get nervous but were luckily easily distracted with stories. we parked right on the beach, scored free parking, and were right on time. quickly hopped on the shuttle toward the start line and reality set in for all of us. it dropped us off right behind the host hotel, after a quick time check i took kaseys stuff to gear check while the other girls made the mandatory bathroom stop. very quickly after megan found her friend from grad school she was meeting and we hurried them to the start line! right on time the national anthem was sung and they were off!
now we had about an hour and a 1/2 till i started and a little bit longer before heather and tina did as well. so we mosied back to the portapotties for another bathroom break as the sun started coming up and getting warmer. we dropped my stuff off at gear check and people watched for a bit before bidding each other goodbye and getting in our corrals.
just as i was getting in mine i spotted my physical therapist ron! i finally got to meet his wife, which who was so nice, and we chatted away the time till our corral crossed the start line. i knew they were doing the race but never thought i would actually see them in a sea of 20,000 runners! with the success of my last sub-2 hour with jen a few weeks earlier i used her method of starting out slow in the back of the corral for the first 3ish miles. it was wayyy harder without someone to tell me to slow down, so i had to check my watch a lot.
down pacific coast highway we went happily listening to the beach boys from the course music! i never even thought to add that to my playlist:) at mile 4 i was hoping to see megans family as we trudged up the only real hill on the course into a surrounding neighborhood and my allowed time to finally pick up the pace. right on the corner i thought there they were cheering! always good to see a familiar place. i had long since lost ron and as we rounded the loop to come back to pch i tried to keep an eye out for heather and tina in the corrals behind me.
i was feeling really good as we got back on pch and began scoping out the other side for megan and kasey. it was getting quite warm, there wasnt even a cloud in the sky! beautiful day for running. finally i spotted megan and her friend michael looking good just before my mile 6 then kasey right before mile 7. we made the turn around for the home stretch where i actually caught up with kasey who had just passed the 1/2 way point! she looked good so i wished her luck to head forward. in between mile 8 and 9 i absolutely had to pull over to flush out my eye. between the sweat from it being so warm and the sunscreen i had put on that morning it was now all burning my eye and i couldnt take it anymore. i knew i was on track to come in under 2 hours, but would never make it if i didnt try to fix my eye.
luckily that didnt take very long and i was off again to finish the last 4 miles! the crowds started getting thicker and thicker as we got closer to the finish. i knew i would have to pick up my pace a bit if i wanted to get under 2, but not by much. at mile 12 i knew i had to go for it so i picked someone ahead of me and trailed them for the last mile .1 to the end. now that last .1 always seems long, always. but this one, i swear to you was much longer than .1! as i crossed the finish line with my hands in the air i glanced at my garmin to still see a 1 at the beginning of my time! i finished literally just under my goal, 1:59:03!!! i moved through the finish chute, grabbing water, and randomly running into a few more vegas runner friends!
this was a really great course! plenty of support, super organized, and all around nice people everywhere we went. it was so cool to watch the full girls finish their 1st and have just about everyone set a pr that day. definitley recommend this course to everyone!
|our olympic medal pose:)|