The distance above is what I ran last Sunday at the Austin Marathon in 4 hours, 37 minutes, and 38 seconds, – a non-stop roller coaster 10:36 minute/mile ride on hilly Central Texas land. I had a blast, and I’m extremely grateful that my mom, Janie, Jenny, Matt, Beth, Deanna, my cousin Samantha, and all the Team In Training folk cheered me on – especially at mile 20, where I did hit a bit of a “wall” just before and after. The crowd support was fantastic, I felt, even though it was my first, with nothing else to compare it to other than what I’ve read in Runner’s World. It should have been a bit closer to 4 1/2 hours, but I made a mistake of drinking way too much fluids instead of drinking when I needed it, thus requiring a port-o-potty stop around mile 18, if I remember. I was a bit out of it afterwards – well, OK, a lot out of it. If it wasn’t so darn hilly, I think I could have had a shot at 4:15. Weather was outstanding – started at 36 and I finished at around 55 degrees, with gorgeous sun the whole time. Eh, it’s all good. I made it, and that’s what counts, right?

Thank you all for your support and wishes of good luck, a fast time, and that I wouldn’t get hurt or die out on the race! I don’t know when I’ll do my next marathon, though I know I’ll do another. My next plan is to get faster, stronger, more flexible, just sturdier in general, so that the next one will definitely be under 4 hours. I’ll put up some more pics soon, but here are a few to check out:

mile 10

Me at mile 20

Me at the finish line