It was a beautiful day for a PR, but it didn't happen for me. I PRed by exactly 1 second.
This all started yesterday when I picked up my packet and picked out my outfit. This race had shorts instead of a shirt, which I think is awesome. I need another shirt like a hole in the head. As far as my outfit, I was going for loud. I wore the same tank top from Zooma, shorts I picked up at the Indy Marathon expo, arm warmers and buff from Tri-eva and kick-ass socks I won from a raffle Maggie put on. Loud = achieved. It's easier to find myself in photos that way anyhow.
Side note: How awesome is Jenny? She chauffeured me around, encouraged me, took photos, held my gear and waited for me to finish. What a friend. Plus, she's still hobbling around in a walking boot, so we got VIP parking ... also known as handicap parking.
We started running through a parking lot, then turned around and swung back through grass and onto my beloved Busse Woods path around mile two. Look at how strong and relaxed I look there at mile two:
My stomach got upset and I needed a bathroom. Except, there weren't any bathrooms anywhere at all ever. There were plenty of real toilets, but they were locked. It's too early in the season for bathrooms. The race didn't rent a single port-o-potty for the course. I nearly cried when I tried to get into one of the forest preserve toilets and found it locked. I saw Bobbi at the 11 mile and she yelled "looking strong!" I told her I felt terrible. My splits show the real tale.
This all pisses me off for a number of reasons. My legs were fine. My breathing was fine. My body felt great. My endurance is there. My stomach is not.
I finished in 1:56:12, 17th in my age group. That means I was one second faster than the HeatBreaker Indoor half and a little less than a minute faster than my first half marathon.
Jenny and I stuck around and did the egg hunt, which was a much-hyped bonus of this race. Alas, I didn't win anything cool. I collected probably eight eggs that contained nothing but candy (and not event chocolate!).
However, for a small race, the post-race food and expo was fantastic. I stocked up on running fuel and fruit, as well as tried some new bar things.
I wanted to love this race, but I can't help but wonder what would have happened if there were bathrooms on the course. Could I have made a quick stop and PRed? Everything else was in my favor, from the weather to the familiar-to-me course. So now I have a chip on my shoulder and something to prove.
Pros: Familiar course, great swag of Nike shorts, local race supporting my running community, a good amount of food and fuel available on site, perfect weather, cute medal, post-race egg hunt, nice photo opportunities for the whole family with the Easter bunny and this random PowerBar chick
Cons: No bathrooms open on the course. No port-o-potties on the course. It could have used more water stations, too, since it was in the 60s by the time we finished. Also, parking would have been dicey without Jenny's handicap spot.
Would I race this again: No. There are so many other races that I feel like I could rock. And now I have a bad taste in my mouth with this, too.