a marathon that was never in my books until my friends and i got a registration discount last year. i have not been putting miles leading to this event, so i didn’t set a very aggressive target. besides, nagging running-related aches-and-pains still linger since the last event. the target was to make it around 3:50-3:55ish.
the weekend forecast has changed from sunny to cloudy with a chance of rain. however, coming to ac on saturday for the packet pickup, it was cold and pouring hard. darn, i did not bring any cold-ready nor rain-ready apparel, not even a light wind vest (ended up buying a wind/rain jacket at the expo, at a good price anyway). the expo was small – in one of the function rooms in caesar’s casino. met my friends there and got our race packets. long sleeve tech shirt was of good quality. ordered vietnamese takeout from a strip mall before heading back to the hotel.
event day. the marathon course starts and ends at the boardwalk. the half and full marathoners started at the same time. there was no waves, no corrals – find your spot and take it from there. temp was a bit chilly because of the wind. i decided to wear the jacket sans the sleeves.
the run was almost constant at a conversational pace, not fast nor slow. the course was relatively flat, with lots of aid stations (about 1 every 1.5mi). enjoyed the tailwind from mile 13-16, which would turn into a massive headwind because this was the same route going back to the finish. the last 3 miles on the boardwalk proved to be the biggest challenge because of fatigue and the strong headwind. crossed the finish line at about 3:54 clock-time.
post race snack was adequate – water, sodas, honest tea, fruits, bread. waited for the others to finish. one by one they crossed the line – kit, peter, francis, mike. hang out a bit, exchanged pleasantries, pictures, and decided to call it a day.
saw a chinese restaurant in the area before heading home. late-lunch-and-rest. drove home after.
post-race aches-and-pains. left knee bothered me more than any other part of my body. same knee that caused me pain at turkey swamp 50k. it never went away. oh well.