Greg dropped me off around 6:30am. The race had strict rules that all athletes had to be in their corrals by 7:00am for the 7:30am race start. I wandered my way along Broad until reaching High to drop off my jacket in the clear bag. I've never wanted to hold on to a possession like I did my jacket! I paced for a good 10 minutes before finally succumbing to the line and handing my warm Northface jacket over to the kind volunteer. Thank goodness my gloves and I would not be parting.
7:30am came and went. I was in Corral C, but there was no movement. Usually in large races it takes about 5-10 minutes before movement occurs. Sometimes as much as 20 minutes (Kentucky Derby 1/2, Marine Corp Marathon). I heard fireworks but couldn't see anything around the buildings. Come on, folks, let's get this thing started!
7:45am and still no movement. Finally at 7:55am my group started moving a few steps forward. It wasn't until 8:00am that we were fully released into the streets of Columbus. By this time, I had spent a half hour fidgeting and jumping around to stay warm (a relative term). Would I have the energy to do well or did I just expend all I had?
The first two miles were miserable. Walkers 3-4 wide blocked many stretches. It was tough finding my stride between feeling arthritic from the cold and scooting between runners to find an open space.
Miles 3-6 were nice taking us past the Governor's Mansion and some breathtaking homes in Bexley, before spending some time on Capital University's campus. Eventually we were back on Broad Street (pretty boring stretch). It was around mile 8 that I had an "uh-oh" moment. Now where were those port-o-potties? I saw them EVERYWHERE when I didn't need to go. Then they were nonexistent. Damn...this is going to be awkward and a serious change to my running stride! Finally, I found one between mile 8-9 and spent a quality 3-4 minutes. Prior to finding the port-o-pottie, I was worried I would spontaneously combust. When I was inside one, nothing...it took what felt like forever to do my business. But when I was done, I had a little sprite in my step and knew I would finish.
German Village has always been one of my favorite places. Meg and I spent many Saturday nights at Cup-O-Joe's and the bookstore next door wandering room to room before finding just the right kids book. Finally, we were back to High Street for our final 2-mile stretch. Now how did that incline get here? High Street always seemed flat to me until I was having to run it. Oh dear...my shoe is untied. Great. Better stop since I have the coordination and lightfootedness of an elephant.
Is that the corner? Can we really be at Nationwide Arena? Oh, thank goodness. And just like that, another half marathon was completed!
|Me and my girls post-race. Look at that medal - it's a weapon!|