Marine Corps 17.75
March 28, 2015
Temp: 32*, sunny, and super windy
What I wore: hat, long sleeve shirt, jacket, Skirt Sports Happy Girl skirt, tights
PROCompression socks, and my new Altra Intuitions 3.0.
I found out mid-week that I did not have to run this race. I got into the Marine Corps Marathon via lottery. After a 20 mile run on Wednesday and a slightly sore knee during my 12 mile run on Thursday, I was feeling less than enthused about running. Add in a prediction of unseasonably cold weather and the thought of staying in my warm bed crossed my mind more than once. Thankfully, a fellow MRTT mom offered me a ride down and that was all the impetus I needed to actually get out of bed.
Our trip down went smoothly and we quickly caught a bus to the start line. Then we stood around in the freezing wind for an hour. Ugh. Finally, it was time to run! We quickly turned from pavement onto a hilly dirt/gravel road. I was not a fan and my legs were unhappy. I managed to stick with my MRTT friend despite this and ran until we hit the wicked uphill at mile 4.5ish.
I walked that bad boy. I have no regrets.
After the big hill, I slowly but surely caught up to my friend. I had no real time goals, so I just kept plugging away. We separated again at a water stop, but managed to catch each other again around mile 7 or so. At that point, my runner’s high kicked in and I was able to run a strong steady pace until we turned back onto the awful gravel and mud roads. There were two more steep hills in that section where we walked and then it was just a short way to the finish. From mile 10 to 11, I felt AMAZING. If I hadn’t wanted to stick with my friend, I think I could have really picked up the pace, but I stayed with her until I could see the finish line. I can’t resist a finish line sprint, so I admit I took off. I was shocked at both the 10:37 average AND how good my legs felt after such a heavy mileage week!
- The race was really well organized. The buses to and from went super smoothly.
- Marines. Duh.
- Plentiful water stops, even though I relied entirely on my handheld bottle full of nuun.
- The medal is really nice.
- Getting the golden ticket at the end. In fact, thanks to friends who did not need theirs, I was able to give 3 lucky ladies entry codes to the Marine Corps Marathon.
- The hills. OMG, this course was hilly.
- Having to get there an hour early to deal with the parking and the buses and then stand and wait for the start of the race
- The COLD!
Would I do it again? Maybe. It was well organized and it’s a great way for “locals” to get into the Marine Corps Marathon, but if I weren’t running that, I’m not sure I’d make the effort. The drive + the shuttles + the wait + run + the drive home made for a really long morning.