When I saw the race day weather forecast to be cold, wet and very windy (headwinds), I started to get worried. I was concerned about my race being ruined by the weather. But then I thought, there's nothing anyone can do about the weather and we'll all be running in the same conditions, so I better stop whining.
I arrived at the Athlete's Village about 2.5 hours before the start of the race. Once I got there I headed to the "Hawaii House", which is an engineering firm's office/residence on Main Street where Hawaii runners and islanders gather to relax before the race. According to this article, the owner started inviting Hawaii runners in for breakfast in 1995 to honor his late wife who loved visiting the islands. I was first invited into the house in 2012 by a close friend who lives in Hawaii. Since then it's been a tradition to relax and hang out at the house before toeing the Start line.
I hit the half-marathon mark in 1:16:13, which was right around where I thought I'd be considering the conditions. My coach and I initially thought that going out in 1:14-1:15 for the half would be perfectly reasonable, if the weather was good. However, going out in 1:14-1:15 in windy conditions would have made for a long day. From miles 12-16, I continued to put down splits between 5:45-5:50. My 5K split of 17:55 between 20K-25K was my fastest throughout the race.
After 16 miles came the infamous Newton Hills. This is the section of Boston's course that will make or break a runner. In last year's race, the Newton Hills broke me and I ended up jogging to the finish. I wasn't about to experience that again. I reflected back on all the tough training and long runs I did on rolling hills and ran strong (or at least tried to) up the hills. Splits for miles 18-21 were 5:54, 5:51, 5:55 and 6:15, respectively. When I saw a 6:15 split for mile 21, I couldn't help but think that my race was about to go downhill.
|The infamous Newton Hills!|
After I crested Heartbreak Hill, I tried to regroup and focus on using even the slightest downhill to propel me forward. There were signs of my legs coming back to life as I hit the next three miles (miles 22-24) in 5:46, 5:50, and 5:47 pace. However, things started to get really tough over the last couple miles. My legs felt very heavy and the arms/shoulders started tightening up. Mile 25 was a 5:52 split.
|1 Mile To Go|
|2:33:13 for 119th Overall|
|Official Marathon Splits|