Monday, October 20, 2014

Detroit marathon recap

When my alarm went off at 4:45 on Sunday, my cat looked at me and gave me a crazy look, wondering why I'd ever want to get out of bed that early and go run outside in the dark. I agreed with her and for a good 20 minutes debated texting Bill to say I was skipping it, to not bother driving downtown to see me finish.

Siiiiiiiigh Then I got dressed and left the house. I've never not done a race I was registered for and it was only fitting that Detroit would be my last* marathon, given that it was my first. Besides, I had already horsed around with the expo, and if I didn't run, I wouldn't let myself wear the shirt, and for all my complaints about the expo and the race, they always have really nice shirts. (They had my size and it fits)

It was cold. My throw away shirt was way too small and I didn't have any gloves. I wasn't in the mood to run. Sometimes though, you just get it done, even though my legs were still tired from Chicago and my pinky toe blister was guaranteed to come back very soon.

The start area in Detroit is always so congested and movement anywhere near the corrals is impossible. The only place I could get inside a corral was the C area, so that's where I started, despite the J marked on my bib. I went out slowly and still passed a good number of people. It makes me wonder why they bother with assigning start corrals if they're not enforced and it's too congested for runners to use them correctly.

Just for fun I applied the 4:40 pace band I had picked up in Chicago and for about 12 miles I was right on target. Then I just stopped caring and stopped trying. Walking became more frequent than just through the water tables. I walked about a mile going through Indian Village, then while on Belle Isle, it was so painful and I was going so slowly that it made no sense to try and jog. I could walk at the same pace for a whole lot less pain, so I did.

Mad Dog saw me on the bridge and we chatted for a bit. I said I was sticking with what had been my plan since April, which was PR in Chicago, then horse around in Detroit and just finish. Then I admitted I was going to walk until mile 26.1 then jog the last bit just to save face. I didn't even manage that because I saw Bill and ran over to hug him before I crossed the finish :)

My time... who cares? It wasn't a PR, but it was never intended to be one. I finished 57 minutes faster than my first Free Press when I actually had been trying.

Despite not even trying in the second half, I had a number of mini-accomplishments:
- I ran the entire Ambassador Bridge, for the first time in 4 tries. It's a steep hill that goes for well over a mile and I've always walked part of it.
- I ran the entire tunnel
- I ran the entire Belle Isle bridge, which is flat, but loooooong and late in the race.

Some runners have a mantra for each race. This was my first time repeating one to myself: "I never ever ever have to run another full marathon!"lol
Brrr!!! It was cold despite the sun!
They have great medals every year. They're always the same,
but I'm fine with that :)


  1. Great Recap. I am glad that you took it easy for this race. That is a lot on your legs. We had so good weather, it was a bit cold but the sun was heavenly. You are amazing, I don't know how you do it! I prayed for you before and during. Great Smile at the END!

    1. Thanks for the prayers! That smile says I'm a short walk away from a StarBucks :)

  2. I admire you, regardless! Nice finish.

    1. Thanks! Sometimes finishing is all that matters!

  3. Its been a while. I was wondering if you were going to race this year. Glad to hear that you pushed through it. Hope you're recovering well : ) Your buddy 'J'