I feel like I have been in mad dash mode since Saturday evening when I got to Boston, no time to just stop and breathe. Needless to say I need a few days to process everything before I write a real race report. But some initial thoughts and splits are below.
Starting with the elite women at Boston was just an amazing experience. The whole morning is just a blur of good times. I met some fantastic women and was just so relaxed and happy to be a part of something so special. That said I severely underestimated the mental demands of running this marathon by yourself and I need to invest some serious time in preparing myself to race better solo in the future.
Clearly I got a bit caught up in the moment the first 5k or so. Rookie mistake and I paid for it by running alone from about mile 4 on, and my quads, per the norm here, starting to rebel as early as 10 miles.
I need to find some new racing shoes before my next marathon. My feet were bloodied and blistered yet again, and I do think they contributed a bit to the shredded quads. My downhill form leaves something to be desired, and racing flats just aren't cutting it for this type of course.
As usual I feel like the luckiest girl on the planet. My family drove all the way from Michigan to see me, I had friends go out of their way to visit the start line just to see me run the first 30 seconds of the race, dozens of friends spent their morning on their computers tracking me, I came home to a beautiful bouquet of flowers, and others have been busy sending me links to photos of me in the race. I am truly blessed.
Mentally I am in such a better place than I was last year after this race which was a pleasant surprise. Last year I was nothing short of devastated after this race, I was an emotional mess. I am proud that I have learned how to take the good and the bad races in stride and know that I will use this as fuel to do better next time. After a few days of reflection I know I will be back at Boston next year and maybe #7 will be the year I figure out how to tackle those downhills!
Per usual the Cleveland crew did great. Once again roomed with the amazing Barb Broad who I am so proud to call my friend. She again took her age group by storm running a 3:19:01 marathon PR. The SERC masters were a close second in the team competition with Kam Lee missing his PR by 1 second (and catching and passing me on Hereford!), Mark Godale running a 2:41 just a week after his 100 KM race, and Paul Romanic running a PR 2:42. SERC ladies didn't fare quite as well, but we did manage to come in the top ten, placing 6th. My friend Beth rocked out her first Boston despite feeling under the weather and crashing her bike early in the week, she is the definition of tough. Countless others from the club ran their best Bostons. A few, like me, had a rough day, but we all had a great time. Very proud to be a member of SERC.