So like I was saying before :)
The early miles felt good. I was surprisingly right on target without any tweaking of pace, which is nice since I'm not sure I could have done much about it if I was off. The miles weren't flying by but it's okay when it is early since you still feel good. My shins had been acting funny the last few weeks (phantom pains I am sure) so I was just glad that everything felt 100% and I was able to run the way I wanted to. (well other than having to dodge people every minute or so)
Even though it has been two years since my last Boston I was basically just reliving the course as I went. Remembering how I felt at each stage my previous two times here, and was glad to note that I felt a lot stronger this time around (oddly enough the first 12 miles or so I was actually running almost the exact same pace as my last time here, just goes to show that I am actually getting smarter) ;)
The first 7 miles were just a count down until I could take my first gel and free up one of my hands. Lucked out as there were kids at mile 7 with water and I was able to avoid the madness of the water stop there. It is so nice how so many spectators come out with water, oranges, ice, freeze pops, beer. I was good and only partook in water and ice on Monday. I thought about the oranges, but honestly having orange stuck in my teeth would have drove me nuts!
It's funny how a lot of the first 7 or so miles look the same. There are plenty of little rollers which make you think "Isn't this a downhill course?" and each time you crest one you think you remember where you are only to crest one that looks exactly the same a mile away.
Just clocking miles after 7 counting down the next five until it was time to free up my second hand of a gel. It's amazing how many spectators line the course. Seems to me they could have been a little louder though ;) I love the surges you get when you go through the main streets of the little towns where most spectators are gathered. They just push you right through smiling all the way. Mile 12 came soon enough and it was time for my second gel. Carrying the packets didn't really bother me but it was nice to have my hands free for better high fiving that was about to come up ;)
After my second nutrition break it was time to look forward to the noise at Wellesley. It is just amazing how much of a racket those girls make. And the thing is there isn't even that many of them. Saw lots of great signs as always. My favorite was "Run Bi%@h" I gave her an exceptional high five as I hollered something like "That's right just Run Bi%@h." Also laughed at the "Kiss me I'm Mormon" sign. I slapped plenty of fives and just used the girls energy to push me forward. My quads were showing signs of fatigue already which I wasn't thrilled about so in my mind I knew I was definitely going to have to use the crowds for some extra steam after the hills and might as well use them now while I had them. It's always a let down after you pass the last Wellesley girl. Nothing compares to that tunnel of sound.
Headed up another roller before the half and grabbed a vaseline stick for my arms. My awesome SERC singlet is just a little big on me and was chafing the side of my arms. Managed to get the vaseline on without getting any on my hands, which is great, and then I tucked my shirt into the sports bra to avoid further chafing. It must have been right after this that I turned to my left and was surprised to see Kim Martin right next to me. I shouted hello and scared the crap out of her. Sorry! We talked for a minute or so and both agreed we just weren't having quite the day we anticipated, only being half way done and already showing signs of wear and tear. Of course I am sure her reasons were probably some recent hundred miler while I was stumped as to why my quads were letting me down so soon. I moved ahead and told her I hoped I'd see her before the finish. She has a strong kick and you just never know what is going to happen on those hills.
Hit the half in 1:39 something and thought if I can just force these quads a bit in the final five maybe I can even split.