My running club planned a road trip to a new marathon/half marathon about 100 miles from Oklahoma City. We chartered two luxury buses for the trip. This was to be a test of my Boston Marathon training. I was running the 1/2 and wanted to do my first sub 1:40 time. I just missed it at Tulsa in November, 1:40.22. My training has been going well, I've been able to meet all the speed work times and have resisted the temptation to overdo it.
The bus left Sunday morning right on time. It was a festive atmosphere and I was cautiously optimistic. This was a point to point race for both the 1/2 and full. We got to the start and it was cold and windy. But we all knew that we'd warm up once we started. I had just a short sleeve on, and decided to put a long sleeve under. We started and it was a steep downhill for the first couple of miles. I let the hills take me and was running faster than I needed to. As the road leveled off, I started keeping the pace I needed. I felt fairly good the whole time, and took a Hammer Gel every 20 to 30 minutes. For a first time race this one did everything right. Plenty of aid stations, good traffic control, and a nice finish. The wind was at our backs most of the way, but when we neared the finish, the wind was in our face. I was also starting to fade, but knew I was near my goal. As I entered the stadium and got on the track, my watch said I had close to a minute to spare. We did one lap on the track to finish, and I started sprinting like I was just starting a speed session. I passed several people, and as I neared the finish, saw I was going to make my goal. 1:39.19. I reached my goal, and won my age group by 4 seconds. That means that I passed the 2nd place male on the track. Of course I didn't know that at the time.
The ride home was nice. The entire trip was very well organized as was the race.
A couple of weeks earlier I won my age group in the triple crown of racing.
Next up, Boston April 19th.