26.2 of wet wet wet.
|HK and I around mile 23-something|
The day started with howling winds and rain. You could feel it on the bus on the way up to Folsom. I kept thinking it would die down as soon as the sun started to rise. When the bus arrived at 6am I quickly found Jeffrey, the first of the 3 men gracious enough to rally a relay around my effort of sub 3:35 - "T-Lo's Mojo". I knew going into this race that a BQ was going to take a perfect day. Not necessarily meaning perfect weather but a perfect mental/physical day coupled with weather being favorable. The 2 mile run before the race started got me feeling that a BQ was likely out of reach. I felt like a ping pong ball when hit with a gust of wind and I never really knew where it was coming from... It was mostly a side and headwind.
My plan all along had been to start with 8:30s for three miles and then work down to 8s and hold. The first 6 miles worked out well in that fashion. After the turn onto Fair Oaks it became brutal... I held pace but the gusts were coming straight at me and even with Jeffrey directly in front of me I was starting to feel beat up from the wind and that it might come back to haunt me in later miles. I landed at the half mark right on pace at 1:47 and picked up Kevin (HK).
I was pretty grumpy. I think it was the fact that I heard it discussed by Jeffrey and HK that they would meet "around the corner" after the exchange to avoid the crowd. Well, as I ran past the exchange I see HK. I yell at him "KEVIN" and point that Jeffrey is up ahead. Then I see Jeffrey up ahead and I tell him that HK is behind me somewhere. So I'm immediately a little annoyed because HK wasn't where he said he was going to be. Which he argued that he was where he was supposed to be. ** DON'T EVER ARGUE WITH SOMEONE YOU'RE PACING** Even if you're right, you're wrong.
HK: “What’s in your water bottle?”
Me in a condescending tone “WATER!!?”
At about mile 15 or so the 3:35 pacer is about 100 feet ahead of me but I'm losing steam, fast.
“3:35 is getting away from you. You wanna pick it up?”
Miles 15 - 20 are really nothing but a blur of me staring at the ground ahead of me and moving forward.. I was doing about 8:30s, I think. This was my 3rd time doing CIM and if you've done it before or at least you know the Sacramento area, then you know that after you pass mile 20 - Lohman's Plaza you start heading into downtown on J Street and its the "final phase" of the race and the most fun typically because there are bars and coffee shops and a lot of people. We picked up Glen and HK gave the relay chip to him but stayed with us through the finish line.
Glen was very nice and offering encouragement. He was the only of the three that was doing this consistently and I really appreciated it. I was moving the slowest miles 23-25 hitting 8:50s.
HK: “You wanna go for 8:15s the last 3 miles?”
Me: “No I’m good right here with this pace”
Glen: “ You're doing great Tyler!!”
Me: “REALLY? Because I feel like SHIT” “I’m gonna get sloppy drunk after this” “Oh look, mile 24, that’s how many beers I’m having when this is done”
Glen encouraged me to pick it up after the 25 mile marker and I did... My last mile was 8:19 and that was giving everything I had.
The best signs of the day were "Watching you run is making me wet" (it was raining the ENTIRE time) and "Smile if you've peed yourself today".
Afterwards I proceeded to drink beer and eat bacon.
3:38:16 was my final time. 3:16 shy of a BQ but 12 minutes better than my last CIM so I can't complain. I see a BQ in my future.
My pacers were great.. They all brought something different to the table. Jeffrey didn't talk too much but has a great energy/vibe to him and it was nice just knowing he was there. HK for as much shit as I give him is fun to run with. He's energetic and makes a party of it talking to people on the course and having fun. Glen also has a great energy to him and was very encouraging when I needed it the most. It's hard to talk when you are running at a race pace so I was never talkative on this run which was much different from last year. I felt like Mitch and I were chatting it up most the way through mile 15 before it got super quiet and the mental work took hold. This year's CIM the mental endurance started immediately... I think it had more to do with the weather which gives me hope for my next BQ attempt.
And how about all those spectators still out there during this storm to watch the worst parade ever?? Love all of them!