Tuesday, September 28, 2010
It's Not A Race, It's An Adventure
The Akron Marathon was last Saturday (Sept. 25th). it was my 6th Half-Marathon. 13.1 miles. My time (less potty breaks and getting water from a nice lady in Firestone Park) was under 4 hours. Hey, I walk, right?
The Gods work in mysterious ways. If I had NOT met Chris from Louisville, KY, I would have gotten seriously lost and probably ended up in North Canton! and he would have probably been hopelessly lost as he had no phone and no map.
The coolest part of the race was the end: walking down Main street, hearing people calling my name (it was on my bib and damn, they could read it) coming into the Akron Aeros Baseball Stadium, cheering crowds, hearing the announcer saying names (I heard mine) and the whole nine yards. That WAS pretty darn cool!
It is the absolutely crappiest race if you are not a serious runner or a true speed walker. (Like the 12-minute folks). After Mile 4, there were no more water stations, hence the blessing of the Water Goddess in Firestone Park. After Mile 6 or 8, the Port-a-Potties were locked. NO promised Gu at Mile 10. So, thank God a Circle K was on the route! And the U. of Arkon library john was open! And I had had the foresight to bring my own Gu.
What pissed me off was they advertised the time limit for the Half was 4 hours. Obviously that doesn't mean you get 4 hours of support. Grrr!
I had slowed down considerably at about Mile 2 (near St. Thomas Hospital) because of a relay runner that was in serious trouble. Poor girl and I wasn't going to leave her in the lurch. After Mile 4, I hooked up with Chris, who normally runs (and owns/runs a Running Store in Louisville). He had a torn meniscus and couldn't run. We had a great time and he was super to me. I do believe the Universe put us together and I owe him big time. I helped him too, from there were places where the Blue Line disappeared. Like when you got near the U. of Akron and the Towpath. I had my phone and called Marty about 4 times.
We really could have cut off 3-5 miles of the course and still finished in the stadium. Who was looking? But, nope, we both decided to do the whole course, as posted. No cheating, sorely tempted though I seriously was! (I confess, Reverend Mother!)
The weather was perfect, (another good thing) and talking with Chris about practically everything under the sun, made the miles go a lot better.
You cannot call it a race, honestly. It was much more like one of map-finding thingies (you know, that's actually a REAL sport) or a bike event. I highly doubt I would EVER do the Akron again. Except that ending. That might, might make it worth doing again!
I really earned that damn medal and shirt. Every G. D. blasted mile!