To start, I decided to not fast for Yom Kippur (aka the day before my race). Driving up Friday to Philly, I inhaled a 32 oz bottle of water and was still parched. That made me think that if I go the whole day before without food and drink, I would not make it to the finish line. Not going to get into the religious debate about it, but that was my decision and that's that.
I made sure to eat a lot of yummy carbs yesterday, including a delicious rice bowl with Chinese broccoli and grilled pork tenderloin. I'm just drooling thinking about it. Made a pasta dinner and got in bed about 10:30 pm. Woke up around 6 am to get myself prepped. My stomach was all a mess and I worried that I might have to run to the porta-potties during the run, but I got lucky that it calmed down.
The first few miles were weird because 1) having forgotten my banana at home, I was starting to get a side stitch, and 2) my Garmin wasn't picking up the satellites right in Center City so I couldn't exactly figure out my pace. I also felt like everyone around me was flying by, which was a bit frustrating. My Garmin was saying I ran more than I had, which was annoying, but it actually broke up the race because I had when my Gamin would say I ran a mile, then the actual mile about .3 miles later.
I found myself running around 8:30 min/miles and I was feeling like I was pushing it, but it was sustainable. I just kept making sure I was hitting 8:30 min/miles, even with the water breaks. The course was really really flat, so it was easy to keep an even pace. At this point, I knew that unless some freak thing happened, I'd PR the race, which was so exciting.
Around the 10 mile mark, I was starting to feel the Shot Blocks in at the bottom of my stomach and it felt so so awful. I felt so nauseous, but knew that slowing down was not an option. I just pushed harder and harder to the finish, which made my stomach hate me even more. Right before the 13 mile mark, surrounded by spectators, I started to gag and was very very close to throwing up. I was able to not toss my cookies in front of thousands of people, but it surely was a close call.
As I sprinted to the finish, I felt so awful and sick to my stomach, but I knew the race was almost done and I'd PR by almost 2 minutes! I'm exhausted, but I am definitely on the road to breaking 4 hours at the Marine Corps Marathon in just 6 short weeks. Ah!
Final Results (official)
1:52:09 (8:33 min/mile pace)