I originally signed up for this race as a Boston Prep speed test check on March 10th. Then mother nature of New England decided to dump buckets (2 feet) of snow the day before the race. The city freaked out and canceled the race. You see, it’s been a rough few weeks for Boston area runners. Snow and rain for Hyannis marathon, and a full out cancellation for the Hampton, NH half. So a big part of me was not expecting much luck in a race. Then the race director surprised us with a new date or an option to defer to next year!
Very few times has a race been rescheduled after cancellation. And if it has, I have never had an option to defer to next year! I thought about deferring next year, but there was some questions about Quincy allowing the race to happen in 2013, and I didn’t want to risk it for 2014.
So new date May 5th it was! I think registration was only $45 or $50. The race started at 8AM. Since it was a fairly small race, there was a limited number pick up on Saturday (2-4PM at the Y) and most runners grabbing their bibs before the race.
I woke up at 6:45 (I know not a good idea for a race 30 minutes away that starts at 8AM). In my defense I’m currently battling a cold that’s trying to destroy me. I usually prep my clothes the night before, but felt too sick and tired. There was a slight panic at 6:45 when I realized it was going to be high 40s and all my capri pants were dirty. As much as I didn’t want to, I dug out my winter tights with a grumble and a whole lot of resentment. It’s May!
On the bright side, I sweet talked Tony into driving me to the start line after some record breaking breakfast eating. On the downside, I gave Tony the wrong directions and got us lost on the way to the race. GPS, I am not.
Sorry, no self photo for this race. I was tired, sick and not looking like my pink usual self.
Luckily the closed roads didn’t create much issues in getting to the starting line even at 7:45AM. I got my number, got my free shirt, checked my bag, visited the bathroom and was at the starting line by 7:57! I patted myself on the head and brushed my shoulder off right before the bag pipes started. We had a moment of silence for Boston, and I don’t think I’ve seen as many slightly teary eyes during a national anthem before.
This little card was in our swagbag.
Anyways the gun went off at like 8:01 and the first 5 miles were a fast blur. If only the last 5 miles ever felt as good as the first.
I’ve looked at the course map (below) but I had no clue what elevation changes would be. I said “Quincy is flat, right?.”
To be fair, although only a few miles from Boston, and one stop off the red line, I have only been to Quincy once. And that once was to go to Fat Cat after watching a saliva dripping episode of Phantom Gourmet.
Anyways, as I mentioned, the first 5 miles were fast. Then there was a small bump but nothing too bad. Next few miles were okay enough. My pace was dropping and not towards the faster direction… Then the hills came. They weren’t large, but enough to shock my body into wanting to stop. Mile 11, 12, 13 were no longer a blur. Instead it was slow and I tried to push myself into gear but my quads were clearing only speaking Spanish for Cinco De Mayo that day, because when I said go, they would walk.
I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw the finish line in sight… until I realized I had to run on a track for about 1/4th a mile to reach it. I have never stepped on a track before. It felt weird and I tried to sprint but about 200 meters in I was about to throw up and had to walk a second. How embarrassing! I’m 200 meters from the finish line and I’m walking! I wanted to kick myself!
The track that everyone says is good for speedwork didn’t seem so fast, it seemed slow and painful but I crossed the finish line 1:38:43.
Although my Garmin said I only ran 12.99, more than 1/10th of a mile short of the distance. I know the course is measured and I’d like to think that I didn’t somehow cut off a block since I was following runners in front of me. I guess I’ll call it a Garmin error?
Positive split for the win?
The medals are super cool. They’re smaller and lighter than others but I’m in love with the design. I think the ribbon alone makes this my favorite medal I got in my drawer.
As I was looking up at the results, I got to meet Dani/Weight off my shoulders! Dani PRed on the course after just finishing the Boston Marathon! I also got to meet her wife and father and invited myself into a ride home =). Thank you Dani & family!
After finishing the race, I went back to the school and was pleasantly surprised with the food. At the finish line they had bananas and water, but back at the gym there were two or more tables of sandwiches!
There were also two types of soup. I grabbed a vegetable soup and a grilled veggie wrap and took it with me.
Overall, Quincy half was a great race. Everything from number pick up, to starting line to finish line went smoothly. Over 650 runners ran and while the roads were not fully closed (only one direction would be closed), the volunteers and police did such a great job that I was never worried about getting hit by a car. My only suggestion is wishing they had women’s shirts. The small they gave me was big and has been donated to Tony’s collection of race shirts Liana runs and Tony wears.
Total Time – 1:38:43
Total Place 118/672
Less than a minute from a PR! Maybe if my legs were fresh and I tapered I could have PRed this race but I’m okay with my results. My priority is the TARC 50 Milers and I must keep my eyes on the goal.