Apologies for the delay on posting this... actually, I don't really have a lot to say about this experience. So I should have just said that sooner :-).
The Glass City Marathon is a small and low-key loop course run mostly in view of the Maumee (not Mommy) River in Toledo. It's basically flat, so on a good weather day, it makes a great course for a go-fast goal race. I last ran this race in 2005 with some friends from the coolrunning website. It was my fourth in four weeks - the first time I'd ever done marathons on back-to-back weekends, much less four-in-four. I had 20 good miles in me and then slowed way, way down and finished at 4:03 (after all the pizza was gone. BOO.)
This year, my plan was to do a simple long slow run in preparation for my 50 Miler on the following weekend. I'm really glad that I hadn't targeted Glass City as a goal race. You may have heard about the awful weather for the Monday Boston Marathon. Similar weather blew through the Toledo area the weekend before. Saturday was cold, windy, and blowing rain and snow. At race time on Sunday morning, the rain and snow were gone, so we had clear blue skies. It was cold, though, and windy. With the wind chill, it was about 21 degrees.
That's like a whole new dimension in cold for Island Boy. I wore five shirts, a coat, two pairs of pants, hat, gloves, and chemical hand warmers in my gloves. And shoes, of course. I looked like the kid brother (Randy) in Christmas Story.
I ran like him too. Ugh.
Although the course is a loop, it is really more like a fat out-and-back... the out is mostly due south, and the back is, yes, mostly due north. The wind was from the north, and as the day progressed, the wind became stronger. By M20... where I fell apart in 2005... I was frozen. Also, my puffy clothes kind of formed a sail, and it was like I was running in place.
My current marathon race pace is somewhere around 8:30-8:40/mile. So as a long run, I wanted to keep it around 9:30/mile, which would have been about a 4:08 finish. Slow for me, but planned slow. I was able to keep that pace through M20.
I finished at 4:15. As I crossed the line, a big gust blew the results tent upside down. That's always fun. No one seemed hurt, so I went inside and drank a bunch of Special K protein water. And ate GREAT bagels. But still no pizza. Oh well.
Up next: Well, hmm. It took me so long to write this that my next race has come and gone. My first 50 miler. One word, courtesy of Clubber Lang: PAIN.
I'll write about it in the next couple days. Meanwhile, my next next race is the inaugural Eugene Marathon. I'll see you there.