Monday, October 19, 2009

Team Starry-Eyed Schlepping Smugglers and 26.2 Miles in Kansas City

I know I promised more pictures from Twin Cities...but that was BEFORE I remembered that I would still have a race report for the Kansas City Marathon to write....

This weekend I headed down to Kansas City to run the relay with my cousin, brother, and cousins' friends. The race was on Saturday at 7 AM...

We arrived at 6:45 AM in seperate cars. Actually, my brother and I were still in the car at 6:45 AM and had to jump out at an intersection to hunt down the rest of our team. To say that I was a nervous wreck was an understatement. I have NEVER arrived at a race this late. I was the first runner and our team captain ( my cousin) had all of the safety pins. She wasn't answering her phone. They were singing the National Anthem on the loud speaker and the start line was packed. The idea of running around holding my number during the race did not sound like fun to me. I called my mom frantically yelling that I couldn't find Stephanie and I had no safety pins and my little brother was going to have to find his transition point all by himself in a city that he didn't know. My mom was angry that Joe (little bro) had gotten out of the car with me. I hung up and continued to look for Stephanie. I had given up after I saw the start line moving forward. I went to get behind the pack and by some miracle--I ran into Stephanie and the rest of our team. The first thing out of my mouth was "Safety pins!!!"

They quickly threw a number on me as I said "the line is taking off without me--I gotta go". Little did I know--the line wasn't going anywhere. The race actually didn't start until what seemed like 15 minutes after the anthem was sung. Of course, I was literally at the back of the pack so I had no clue what was going on. I kept thinking about how I hadn't even wished my teammates good luck before I disappeared.

Finally, the race took off. Well, kind of. Since I was at the back of the pack, I had a lot of weaving to do. There were actually walkers in this section because not only do they start the marathoners here--but the 5k, half marathon and us relay people. I quickly made it through the walkers but it took some time to get pass the mass amounts of 15 and 16 min/mile runners. After a mile of weaving, I was finally able to catch up to the pacers. First it was a 3 hr 30 min half marathon pacer. Which seemed like a very slow half marathon time to me. But I continued on my way, weaving through people. Now I know what it is like to literally start in the back of the pack. It wasn't all that bad because I was passing everyone rather than them passing me. Eventually I think I made it up to the 4:15 marathon pacer. The end of my run was up to Liberty Memorial--a very very long hill. I probably could have kept running but had to hand off to my brother at this point.

My mom and aunts were there at the transition point. I was extremely grateful because the buses only took you to the finish line. The original plan was that I would wait at the finish for everyone else to come in. And that would have been a very long wait. Anyways, we all waved Joe good bye and hopped into the car to try to get to his next transition point and get some Immodium to my cousin who was having some stomach issues. She was at the 4th transition point and Joe would be at the 3rd. It took us an hour just to get to Joe. He had already finished by the time we got to him and we spotted him in the street aimlessly wandering around looking for buses. We scooped him up and drove on to try to make to Stephanie with the Immodium.

We made it to Steph before she left--passed the Immodium and then waiting for her friend Jim to come in to the transition. Jim had a solid finish-we said bye to Steph and then Joe, Jim, and I hopped on the bus. The buses were quite packed...and sweaty. It took awhile to get us back to the start/finish.

I think I forgot to mention one crucial part in this whole thing. It was freezing cold most of the race. I actually don't know what the temp was--but it appeared chillier than Twin Cities a few weeks ago. Joe and I went to get some hot chocolate and we all sat around and waited for our final two runners.

Stephanie ended up almost vomiting on her portion of the run. She had the longest leg with 6.8 miles and it was tough with her stomach issues. That and I'm not entirely sure Steph has run this distance all that often. It was around the 4 hour mark when I called my mom to see whether we would be finishing anytime soon. She said that Steph had just handed off to Carolyn (our last runner). Her leg was still over 6 miles so I knew it would at least be another hour.

Around the 5 hour time, we headed to the finish line so that we could run in together. At around 5 hrs 15 minutes clock time, Carlyn came into the finish chute and we all joined her to the finish. My mom shot this picture and these two strange people must have thought my mom was taking a picture of them (we have no clue who they are).

Our final stats were a 5 hr 9 min chip time. I finished with a 9:35 min/mile. The rest of the bunch finished in the 11-14 min/mile range. Soo proud of the team for sticking through it despite our late arrival time and puky issues!!

1 comment:

Irish Cream said...

I am like you--I would have been freaking too! Having to rush and run around like crazy is just such a bad way to start a race! Sounds like you did a great job with your leg, though, despite having to weave so much. I'll have to try a marathon relay sometime . . . sounds like fun! :)