Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Twin Cities Marathon

This past weekend Heather, Sarah Wilson and I headed up to Minnesota for the Twin Cities Marathon. The race was Sunday morning and we had a whole crew running in it. Heather's brother Chad ran the marathon and his wife Shay ran the 10 miler. Heather's other brother Rob's wife, Erin and her two sisters, Sarah and Megan ran the marathon, and from our running group in Des Moines, Kip Headly, Mark Movic and Brad Nielsen and myself all ran the marathon. We left Des Moines around 9 a.m. Saturday morning. Sarah found our marathon mascot monster in her car and he got to come along for the trip. We named him Marathon Monster Mascot or M3.
Here he is on the dash board giving directions.
Our first pit stop was in Apple Valley, MN at Sarah's mom's house to pick up some of Sarah's winter clothes. Sarah's mom, Toni, would be joining Heather and Sarah on Sunday morning to cheer for the marathon.
Next we stopped at IKEA, we had some stuff to take back and it is always fun to shop. I love their carts!
M3 riding up the escalator.
I got my yellow bag and I am ready to shop.
Merry Christmas! The Christmas decorations were out already so Heather and Sarah exchanged gifts.
Cool hats!
After IKEA we made our way to Downtown St. Paul to the Excel Center for packet pick-up.
#422, the official pick-up.
And like every good expo there is plenty of SWAG (Stuff We All Get)
Heather and Sarah pose for a picture at the expo.
Heather and I
M3 at the expo, taking in all the sights.
After the expo, we wanted to go check into the hotel. We had reservations at the Hilton Garden Inn, Heather's brother Chad made the reservations because he and his wife Shay were staying there as well. Chad also ran the marathon and Shay ran the 10 miler. Chad told us that the hotel was downtown and fairly close to the finish line. The only problem was neither Heather or I looked up the address of the hotel before we left. We tried looking for the hotel in our GPS, but it didn't show any Hilton Garden Inn's in downtown St. Paul. We called Chad and he remembered it was 411 Minnesota, so we plugged in 411 Minnesota Ave into our GPS and away we went. It took us about 15 miles out of town to one of the suburbs and 411 Minnesota Ave didn't exists, but if it did, it would have been a house. Sarah then suggested, "Maybe it is Minnesota St not Minnesota Ave" We had our confirmation number for our reservation, so we stopped at a McDonald's and used Sarah's laptop to pull up the confirmation number online, second problem, this McDonald's didn't have Wi-Fi. So I called my parents and had my mom hop online and look up our confirmation number and sure enough we had a reservation at the Hilton Garden Inn, 411 Minnesota Ave, St Paul.
We got checked into the hotel and met up with Chad and Shay. They headed to packet pick-up and I went for a little jog to see how far away the bus pick-up would be for the morning shuttle ride to the start. It was a 5 min jog and we were only 5 blocks away from the finish line. I was very pleased with the accommodations, nice work Chad! After my jog, we met back up with Chad and Shay for dinner at an Italian restaurant called Cosetta's. Great pasta for a pre-race meal!
Good food and good company!
Race Morning, the alarm went off at 5:15 and I got ready and headed downstairs to meet Chad and Shay in the lobby at 5:45. We jogged over to the bus and we were loaded and heading to the start line by 6:00. We arrived at the Metrodome and hung out inside for a while. Shay had a 7:15 start time, so we found her starting area, wished her well and watched her start. Then Chad and I dropped off our bags, found a bathroom and went to our start line. He was in Corral 2 and I was in Corral 1, so we wished each other well and went into our starting areas. The temperature was around 50 at the start, over cast and it looked like it might rain. I had a cotton t-shirt that I tossed to the side with about 2 minutes to go before the start. I also had gloves on, but I kept those through the entire race. At 8:00, the horn sounded and we were off.
Of course M3 made it out to cheer too!
The cheering squad at mile 2!
Still dry, I give a thumbs up as I head by. I was thankful that I had my hat on once we hit mile 3 and the rain started.
Here comes Chad at mile 2 with a fist pump in the air!
Here I am at mile 8, completely soaked from the downpour of rain. It rained from mile 3 to mile 15, and not just a sprinkle but a heavy rain.
Running away in the rain.
Shay finished her 10 mile race and did great. The cheering squad went to the finish line and picked her up. Here is Toni, Sarah and Shay on their way back to the marathon course for more cheering!
Here are some of the nitty-gritty details of my race for those of you interested, if not skip to the next picture.
mile 1 - 6.29
mile 2 - 6.31
mile 3 - 6.01 (I think this one was a little short)
mile 4 - 6.39 (this one a little long)
mile 5 - 6.15
mile 6 - 6.13
mile 7 - 6.17
mile 8 - 6.22 (water stop for a gel pack)
mile 9 - 6.13
mile 10 - 6.12
mile 11 - 6.16
mile 12 - 6.19
mile 13 - 6.26
1/2 way - 1:22:57
mile 14 - 6.26
mile 15 - 6.23
mile 16 - 6.48 (walked the water stop to take a gel pack)
mile 17 - 6.36
mile 18 - 6.38
mile 19 - 6.39
mile 20 - 6.45
mile 21 - 6.51
mile 22 - 7.22
mile 23 - 7.15 (wheels came off the bus)
mile 24 - 7.01
mile 25 - 7.37
mile 26 - 7.40
0.20 - 1.33
Total 2:53.59 (2:54.00 chip time)
Some of you may remember that I tried running this race last year and wilted like a flower in the hot temperature of the day. I made it to mile 19 last year. This year was a different story, cooler temperatures but rain and lots of it. I felt pretty good through the first half, even through I was soaking wet. Once I went by mile 19, I got a big smile on my face, knowing that I was going to finish. My plan was 6.29 per mile giving my a 2:50 finish time. I was on pace till about mile 22 and that is when my legs started cramping up. Looking back I should have taken in more fluids, but I was soaking wet and cold and didn't think to drink more (lessons learned). The course was great, beautiful colors with the leaves changing. Despite all the rain, there were plenty of people out cheering us on, which was a great blessing. It was great to see Heather and Sarah and Sarah's mom out on the course! Ryan Elsbernd made the trip up north, he was on his bike and cheering. I saw him a handful of times, one particular time I remember, at mile 24, he was on the side of the road cheering as I ran by, but also ringing out his socks from all the rain. He was very enthusiastic at most of the miles, but around mile 24, I couldn't tell if it was because he was cold and soaking wet and that was causing him not to cheer as loudly or the thought that I was about to break his personal course record of 2:56.03, either way it was still good to see him on the course! Thanks Ryan.
Finish, my watch said 2:53.59, but my chip time said 2:54.00, either way I was pleased to see the finish line!
I think I got something in my eye, but I was super excited to be finished!
Our friends Seth and Nicole came to see the finish. Here is the whole crew. Toni, Sarah, Seth, Nicole, Heather, myself and Shay.
I was so cold I couldn't stop shaking, the girls dropped me off back at the hotel and they headed back up to the finish line to cheer on Chad. I headed back up to our room and took a hot bath, got cleaned up and drank some water. After I warmed back up, I was feeling a ton better, so I walked back up to the finish line.
Shay, Sarah and Heather trying to stay warm by huddling together.
Heather, Sarah and Shay cheering at the finish line.
Shay keeping warm with the good old Central College blanket, complete with my name!
Here comes Chad to the finish, still with his arm in the air! He finished with a time of 3:59.38, which is a huge personal record for him by 30 minutes, nice job Chad!
Chad wrapped up like a burrito in his space blanket to keep warm.
Chad and I after the race. I am cleaned up and warmed up and feeling much better.
Shay and Chad with their finisher medals!
Chad and Shay headed back to the hotel and we found Rob and his two daughters, we joined them to cheer on Erin, Sarah and Megan. Heather and Gracie at the finish line cheering, Gracie is tired after cheering for mom!
The girls get a birds eye view of the finish line!
Heather and Karys pose for a picture, I think Karys may be half asleep.
But she wakes up enough to make funny faces with Auntie Heather.
Erin and her sister Megan coming into the finish!
After the race was over, we were all hungry, so we made our way out of the cities, but stopped in Burnsville at Famous Daves for some bar-b-que. It was delicous!
All in all, we had a great time in the twin cities. Great job to all the runners, the ones I don't know and the ones I do: Chad, Shay, Erin, Megan, Sarah, Kip, Mark and Brad. Thanks so much for everyone out cheering, you helped a ton! Thank you Heather for supporting me with my running and training! Thanks to the SCRC for all you do. One last note, good luck to all running the Chicago Marathon this Sunday. We will be there to cheer you on!


Christa said...

Good job Seth! We were cheering you on from Indianola!
--Christa, Wade & Morgan

Derek said...

Way to go buddy! I am happy for you.

And, congratulations on two levels. One for finishing the running marathon, and two for writing a marathon length blog roll ;)

the other comforts said...

Hey Seth and Heather--Sure enjoyed reading your blog. Dad watched the entire race on the computer and watched the yellow line making it through the course. Great pictures! the other comforts

Rainbow said...

Hey Seth!
That's awesome. You had a great time ... and how cool that Chad beat his personal best by 30 min!
~ Lorraine