Nashville, TN | April 30, 2016 | Time: 2:26:32 | Well, this was supposed to be my goal race when I started in January but by the time we got to race day I just wanted to finish without pain. And then we learned about the weather and I just wanted to finish period.
To recap- I started on the Hanson’s method in January which was more mileage than normal but a slow build up and lots of recovery miles. However by the time mid-March rolled around I discovered that more mileage wasn’t the best for me. I had to take 9 days off that month. I tried to run again at the start of April. Again no dice and took 2.5 weeks off from running but keeping up endurance in other ways. By the time we hit race day I knew it was no longer a goal race but instead decided to try and just enjoy Nashville. The weather had other plans though.
Race start was supposed to be 7:15 and because we were driving and parking by 5:30 we were up super early. I had everything assembled and ready to go the night before so it just meant throwing everything on and heading for the car. We parked with no issue and then sat inside checking the weather every few minutes to see how things were looking. Up until that morning it had been forecasted as thunderstorms which we definitely didn’t want. But when we woke up the storms had moved north and there was only a slight chance of rain. So in the car, we kept checking while relaxing, hydrating and eating breakfast. We took a few pre-race photos before locking everything up and making the walk to the starting line. We made a pit stop at a nearby hotel and hung out there when it started to pour outside. So much for slight chance of rain. We kept waiting and waiting for it stop and finally when it was just a drizzle we headed to the start. Of course once we got there we found out they had delayed us 30 minutes. UGH. More rain, more wet, and more standing around until FINALLY we started.
Kristi and I started together and the first part of the race was a nice warmup- straight down Broadway toward the water. She stayed with me until the 2 hour pacers caught us and then I said goodbye. I knew I wasn’t going to hit my goal and better her have a good race then drag behind with me. In mile 2 we started the uphill climb to what I thought was one of TWO hills on the course. Boy was that a laugh afterwards.
It was a neverending battle with the hills and humidity. Because it had rained and stopped it was like running through a muggy cloud. All of my training went out the window and I just focused on moving forward. Every time I thought we’d reached the top of a hill to get some downhill it would go flat for a couple of minutes and then continue upward. There were definitely not enough downhills on the course.
This was the first course I’d been on where there was crowd support the entire time. That held in the humidity but it was nice to see so many people out to watch the race. I was hanging in there until about mile 11. I was out of GU and low on water and the hills kept coming at me. When looking back at my splits this is where I really fell off my pace. I kept trudging on until mile 13 when as we were scaling another hill I had to take a break and walk. I hate doing that but my body needed it and well this wasn’t my race day. Finally I reached the top to cross the bridge to head to the finish. I remember racing to the bottom as fast as my legs would take me until I got past that finish line. Not my best time by far but also not my worse.
I’ll hopefully get things back on track for Virginia. And be better prepared for heat, humidity and hills.