It happened. There has been a BDD sighting. He does exists.
This weekend was the trip to Toledo for the Glass City Marathon and Half Marathon. Tom and I were excited to finally meet up with some great bloggers, run a nice flat race, and maybe PR. Saturday, we met up with BDD and his wife to do the "babysitting exchange" as Amanda called it. She told us to take care of BDD. :) We would... We chatted the whole way up in the car. I could tell he was a little nervous, but we knew he'd do great. I'll admit, I was a tad nervous too - it was the first race of the season and I hadn't been feeling great the past few days. Tom on the other hand, was excited to run (he was doing the marathon).
We got to the expo around 3:30. Met up with Kevin and Jennie, got our shirts (I love female fit shirts in pink... thank you race director for taking my style into consideration when planning for the race shirts), and walked around the expo which was small. We waited around for Matt and Heather to arrive. Then it happened. Picture time. Now I'll be honest, BDD offered to take the picture, but hello, we were at the expo. There were a bunch of people who could get a picture of the group for us. In the back of my mind, I was thinking "ha... we got him now". A really nice lady lined up to take a picture of us at the start arch. All 7 of us. You ready?
After the expo, we quickly checked into our hotel, then went to Rosie's, an Italian place for dinner. Great food, great company, lots of laughs. It's nice to be surrounded by people who "get" you and what your hobby is!
We split with the group after dinner, found a CVS to get some cold medicine (I felt like I was coming down with something), got to our hotel room and pretty much called it a night.
We left the hotel around 5:55 since we were oh, 5 minutes from the race start. On the way there, Tom and I had this conversation:
Tom - So I know my marathon PR is a 3:58, but I think I'm going to line up with the 3:40 group and see how long I can hang with them.
Me - Um... okay. That sounds super smart. All of your long runs have been around 9 minute miles. Do you think that's the smartest thing?
Tom - No, but it'll be fun to see how long I can hang and then see how long it takes for me to die.
Genius race planning, let me tell you. But, me lining up with them too (the half and the full run 8.2ish miles together) would set me up to run a 1:50 half which is close to my PR of 1:49:21 so maybe if I'm feeling good I could make that up in the last 5. I don't really question Tom. He knows what he's doing.
We hit the porto potties (NO LINE!!!) and then sat in our car until about 15 minutes before the race. Found the group, wished everyone a great race, told them we'd see them at the finish and took off. We lined up right at the 3:40 group. Before I knew it we were off.
I don't wear a Garmin, but Tom had his Timex on and well, everyone's Garmin's were beeping at the mile markers so I kept not of the pace. First mile was a lot of dodging, but we managed a 8:36. Good. I can handle that. No sign of the 3:40 group though (They were behind us for some reason). I never saw the mile two marker and hit mile three at 25:24. Miles 2 and 3 were both around 8:13's and I felt it. I started to get a little side stitch around mile 4.5. I ran through it but mentally it hurt a little. Tom looked great. Around mile 6.5 I started to slow a little. I had hit the 10k mark at 52:16 but I needed some food. I ate and just tried to keep chugging along. Tom was always a few feet in front of me and I just felt like I couldn't catch him. Still, no sign of the 3:40 group. Around mile 8, they caught me, but Tom stayed in front of him. When the course split, I waved goodbye and made my turn. He went right and I went left. Gosh I hope he doesn't die too early!
I was getting tired and decided to put my tunes on after seeing Matt around mile 9. He was having Achilles problems and told me that he was taking a scenic walk to the finish. :) About a mile later, here comes Matt, smiling and talking a mile a minute. I think I must have picked up my pace a little when he showed up and I got another side stitch. I didn't want to hold him up, but we walked for maybe 20 seconds to stretch it out and then continued to run. I didn't know what pace I was running and that was fine. At mile 12, Matt took a beer from the aid station and by mile 13, was pumping the crowd up. I literally was cracking up. Totally took my mind off of the last few miles! We ended up crossing the finish line together.
My finish time was a 1:50:44. Not a PR, but close. I was happy with that for sure. It was a windy day, and quite frankly, I didn't go into the race thinking I had that in me.
I put some warm clothes on (everything I could find) and found Heather and Matt. Heather had a great race too! Found Kevin, who PRed big time and Jennie who did get in the 5k. We decided to wait for BDD and Tom and cheer on the other runners.
It was so great seeing BDD finish his first half. Watching him come in was exciting - sometimes we lose sight of the fact that the "first race" for everyone is such a monumental experience. I remember my first 13.1. Glad we were there to see his. Look how strong he looked! :)
MY FREAKING HUSBAND!!!!
The clock read 3:39:xx. WHAT THE????
I ran up to him, jaw on the ground screaming "where the hell did that come from?". I couldn't have been more excited to find out that he ran his tush off and NEVER got caught by the 3:40 group. That means that he actually executed his race plan PERFECTLY and finished with a time of 3:38:51 - a 20 minute PR! It's amazing what the mind and body can do.