Well, yesterday's MCM was the most incredible experience of my life. It was my first marathon. The MCM was fantastic, the start was exhilirating wtih thousands of people lining the start line, narrowing the path down to 4 or 5 abreast. But what a rush!! the crowd was very enthusiastic, I printed my name on the front of my shirt, as recommended here on this Buleting Baord, and I had people calling me by name and cheering for me constantly all along the route. I was on a high and running with a smile on my face the whole day. My daughter bicycled along the course and met me at 4 different spots. At mile 23, on the infamous 14th street bridge she ran up to the barrier and gave me a kiss, I needed it at that point. Everything they say about the uphill finish is true. It was difficult, it was long, and it was draining, but the crowd was incredible here, they were 3&4 people deep and cheered me in, how could I stop or slow down with so many shouting encouragement, I felt like I was winning the race.
I know what everyone says about not setting any time expextations, but I did. My objective was to finish under 5 hours, my personal goal was 4:40. I finihsed in 4:41:20. I'm very gratified and appreciative of the whole day. I can't see anything topping that.
Thanks to all of you who posted responses and encouragment to all of us first timers. All your advice helped. I felt good, not strong, but good at the end, and was sufficiently nourished and hydrated throughout the day. I maintained my 10 minute pace for 24 miles then a cramp, and the last hill got me.
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