That was a long paragraph to say.. this will be short. So let's just do the Play-by-Play.
- I ran the entire first mile - keeps the streak alive.
- I quickly started walking after the first mile, in the sometimes steep hills of Rosslyn.
- The "Jog-a-mile, walk a minute or two" plan worked nicely with the early hills, provided I was flexible on the mile part. If a hill happened 0.75 miles after my last walk break, I walked. No big deal.
- There was a long hill around the Georgetown Reservoir that I probably walked for 3-4 consecutive minutes. Again, no big deal.
- My average pace through the first half was right where I said it would be - eleven of the first thirteen miles were within 20 seconds of 10:30, about half above, half below. The two exceptions were a 10:54 in mile 2 (mostly uphill), and a 9:56 in mile 4 (downhill.)
- I made a conscious effort to ease off at the half-marathon point, and mile splits started varying more widely on the flats of the national mall. Until mile 24, every mile split was within 30 seconds of 11 flat - some were down near 10:30, others were as high as 11:27 - but all were below the 11:30 required for a sub-5. Again, they were evenly distributed within that 60 second range of 11+-30.
- It became obvious to me by "The Bridge" that not only was I going to break 5 hours, I had a shot at 4:45. But when we got to the very crowded out-and-back portion in Crystal City, I knew that I was starting to slow down more dramatically.
- Mile 24, on the way back to the Pentagon, was my first mile below 11:30 - it was 11:54. Mile 25 was 11:38, and mile 26 was my slowest at 12:11. Good enough though! Can't complain about that!
|Post-race, with a PR and a smile.|
No doubt about it, MCM is a popular race - to the point that it's crowded. I've heard people talk about this before. There were always people around. 20-30 within a 20-30 foot radius of me - constantly. And, in the last ten miles as people started struggling - slowing down, walking - there was a lot of jockying for position and weaving my way through the groups who were sometimes moving 5-6 abreast. It got really bad in Crystal City with the two-way traffic. I know this reads like I'm complaining and I guess I am, but to complaint is really not my intention. I just feel like it's important to point out - the course and field is such that a mid-pack runner will have a lot of company at MCM.
|These are some tough MoFos, who did the entire marathon with these packs. Notice the crowds - this was at mile 5.|
|In an uncharacteristically non--crowded moment. of the race.. What a course!|
|Awesome medal! Maybe second-best after Big Sur!|
05K 0:33:26 33:26
10K 1:06:22 32:56
15K 1:39:17 32:55
20K 2:12:22 33:05
25K 2:46:46 34:24
30K 3:21:46 35:00
35K 3:56:50 35:04
40K 4:32:39 35:49