October 3, 2011 by Carin
So, have you figured out I love to run?
In case you missed it, this past weekend was filled with events surrounding the Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon. It was race weekend!
Saturday was filled with family events and shorter races. Grace, our 2 yr. old ran her first race, the toddler trot. She loved it and ran the whole race with a smile on her face. As a parent, it was so fun to see her walk away with a t-shirt and medal. Next year, we might just have to enter her in a longer race, she loves to run!
Sunday was the 30th running of the marathon and the 13th running of the 10 mile race. At 7:09am, the gun went off and the 10 mile race began. My husband, Brian and I had a plan. We would run the race at 8:30 min/mile pace, or at least try. It would be the fastest race ever for either of us. Just two weeks prior, we went out for training run at that pace, so I knew I could come close and was excited to give it everything I had. So, back to the gun and the start of the race, the course heads down theWest River Road down to theFranklin Ave. bridge across the Mississippi River to the East River Road, up to Summit Ave. and all the way down Summit Ave to the state capital. Now let me tell you,Summit Ave. is a lot longer then I remembered and getting down that road was a huge mental game. But I am getting ahead of myself.
The morning was deliciously cool and sunny with a faint breeze. The weather was perfect to set a personal record (PR). We ran the first few miles on pace, but with a lot of bobbing and weaving to get ourselves some space among the other 7500 runners. After about 3 miles we found some space and settled into our pace, our groove. We had a few tough hills to run up and we conquered them with ease. By mile 5, on our last tough hill up toSummit Ave, we started to get separated. We had just seen our friends, Brette and Jen cheering us on with words of encouragement and then I started to pull away from Brian. His legs just didn’t have the oomph to keep up the pace and he fell slightly behind. The run alongSummitwas exhilarating, knowing I only had 5 miles to go to reach my goal. The downside, I was alone without my favorite and best running partner. I kept looking for him, listening for him and hoping he would catch up to me. I kept thinking I was going to fall off pace and he would eventually catch me and we would finish together. I dug deep and kept the pace, by mile 8 I was starting to feel the effects of my effort and the constant rolling hills. By mile 8.5, I just wanted to reach the long downhill to the finish line. Mile 9 came soon enough and the downhill was so within reach, I was getting giddy. I crossed the finish line in 1:24:52 – 8:30 pace and man I still can’t believe I did it, just 4 months after giving birth to our second child. Brian crossed the finish line soon after me in 1:26:34, missing his goal by a minute and a half, but he was happy to have run faster then any race up to this point.
The race course is awesome! This is the race that spectators come out for more then any other race in the Twin Cities. For gosh sakes, people throw parties in their lawns while cheering on the runners. The 10 mile course is covered in spectators cheering runners on, giving motivation and pushing you when you need a push. The enthusiasm is contagious and it fills the air. The people are excited and it shows. The water stops are packed with people handing you water, playing music and cheering. All the volunteers surrounding the event are excited, the announcers are excited, and it just doesn’t get any better at any event in the Twin Cities.
Want to know the downside to this race? I can’t really come up with any. And I love to have cons, but I really can’t think of anything that wasn’t done well. The Twin Cities in Motion staff and volunteers, which host this event, have all the bases covered and that is what makes this a premiere event and in my opinion, should not be missed.
Well I just thought of one con, the finisher shirts for the 10 mile race are bright ass green, not my favorite color, but hey, everyone who sees me wearing it will know that I finished, too bad they won’t know I set a PR!