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Race Recap: Livestrong Austin Marathon 2012

by Christa on February 23, 2012

in Race Recaps

Another 26.2.  Oy. Vey.  But this one was different.  How?  Well…. first, I got to meet up with some fun bloggers.  Even if it was only for a little expo time, it was great seeing them.  Especially since I can’t make it to BiSC this year (major boo)!  Looking forward to more race adventures with these ladies.

Secondly, and very excitingly, it was my sis- and bro-in-law Aimee and Michael’s FIRST half marathon!!  Spoiler alert: they KILLED it!  But more on that later.

I’ll tell you all about the funsies we had in the next post.  This one is strictly race.

So the expo was fun.  The only complaint I would have is not enough free shit handed out.  Yes, that is a requisite at expos.  But my dad and Shane were running the 5k and got very nice tech shirts – the nicest I’ve ever seen for a 5k!

We had a delicious carb-loading dinner of Mangia’s pizza back at the casa.  Seriously, the veggie deep dish was possibly the best ever.

Woke up the next morning at 5am.  I wore Champion crops and sports bra, my TNT jersey, SPIband for gels, trusty Saucony Triumph 9s, and – get ready for it – gay pride socks as arm warmers.  My only purchase at the expo!  Wait, lie.  I bought some Honey Stinger waffles.  Yes, I realize I’m not gay.  However, I fully and publicly support gay marriage and GLBT rights.  I figured I could represent for 26+ miles – the very least I could do.

Scooped up marathon buddy Kristen at her hotel and walked a block to the Capitol building.  BUT we still had to check our bags, and I didn’t realize gear check was at the FINISH.  The race was about to start, so we literally ran to gear check at 7th & Congress.  Was not preparing myself for a warm-up mile.

Kristen’s bro Steven was running his first.full.marathon.ever. and let me just tell you – I had my doubts on this one.  The most he had run beforehand was a half marathon a few weeks prior.  No spoilers yet.

We crossed the start line ~11 minutes after the gun (K and S in the purple shirts, I’m in the orange headband that you can barely see), and eased into a 10ish pace for the first couple of miles. We accidentally dropped Steven around mile 3.  After that, I got a little antsy and we dropped it to the 9:20s for the next 5.   Photo at mile 8.5 (I wasn’t paying attention, but it’s a great pic of K!).

We look like we have matching shoes, but we don’t.  Our splits so far…

5k – 31:50
5 mi -  51:07

Aimee and Michael at 8.5 in the half!!  They look pretty happy about running, just saying.  These two killas went on to finish their first half in 2:22!!  Rock it.

Started making up for our slow first miles.  I was really comfortable in the 9:30s but the hills were getting baaaad.  Don’t let anyone tell you they’re not that bad.  They ARE that bad. But I was not willing to give less than what I knew I was capable of doing.   Same as Houston, I lost K at mile 12 :(

10 mi – 1:39:36
13.1 mi -  2:11:47

I was pleased with my half time, and I kept checking behind me to make sure the 4:25 pacer was back where I left her.  Again, I started getting really giddy at the thought of cracking 4:30 (especially in Austin!!).  Back story…

The night before, at dinner, my dad said, “Well, there’s no way you’re going to PR here.”  And I just said, “Challenge accepted.”  I KNEW I could PR because I blew up so hard at Houston.  And once again, really hoping to crush the 4:30 goal.

I kept track of the mileage by how many til 17.  Why?  The race gained 14 ft/mile until mile 17.  After that it dropped 33 ft/mile.  I told myself that if I got to 17, it was LITERALLY all downhill from there.

Now it was just my ipod keeping me going, as we trekked through the Anderson/Northcross area.  Well, I hit 17 and thought, “shit…I still have a long way to go.”

20 mi – 3:24:00

Sad – the 4:25 pacer finally passed me at mile 19.  VERY demoralizing.  I didn’t have it in me to catch her – well, I wasn’t willing to expend the energy for fear of a Houston repeat.  So I just said ok, barring any disasters, I’ll still PR.  Good enough for me.

Saw my buddy Alex at mile 24 – thanks for the pick-me-up and for running with me for a bit!  It’s so fun seeing people you know.  Also, kids, he CRUSHED the half.  1:26, what?!

If you want to know what I felt like at mile 25….well, here ya go.

Look at those muscles behind me!  Jayzus.

This was the hill before the final turn.  Ugh, thank God.

Official finish time – 4:37:32 – PR by 7 minutes. In AUSTIN, yo.

And what about Kristen and her bro?  Well, she saw his wife at mile 18 and asked how far back he was.  It was only 12 minutes, so she waited.  Turns out he was planning on quitting, but no dice.  They kept it going to a 5:01 finish.  I am SO impressed with his perseverance.

Finishers in front of the Capitol:

Because I ran Dallas in December, Houston in January, and Austin in February, I got an ultra awesome Marathons of Texas medal!

Family finishers back at the casa before heading out to lunch:

Shane’s just glad this is bling he didn’t have to buy:

And didn’t I tell ya the 5k shirts were awesome??

More to come on the fun ATX weekend…more pics too!

**Edited to add:  Shane wants everyone to know that he had the FASTEST 5k time of the day (out of EVERYONE – Schuck, Ginsburg, Arlen, Hesch participants) at 31:21.  Congrats, honey.  You beat me by 30 seconds.  I was pacing for 23 more miles, but whatever.  ;o) WINNER, WINNER.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Dad February 23, 2012 at 8:49 pm

Hey…. and I want everyone to know that I was only 10 seconds behind Shane.


Christa February 23, 2012 at 8:51 pm

Second place is the first loser, Dad. Too bad you’ll never get to redeem yourself – it was Shane’s 5k Farewell Tour.


Dad February 23, 2012 at 9:26 pm

Oh, I’ll redeem myself when I run my first sub 30, whether he’s running ….OR NOT!!!!


Christa February 23, 2012 at 10:07 pm

The pros would tell you it only counts if you go head-to-head. I mean, you might have a psychological block with him now, I don’t know! ;o)


terra February 27, 2012 at 1:32 pm

Proud of you, lady!


Christa February 28, 2012 at 2:01 pm

thanks so much, terra. it was tough but we had a good time :)


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