Note: My actual time was 32:47. I ws 1944 out of 3522 runners. I was 239/453 in my age group.
I woke up at 6:10 AM to the sound of torrential pouring rain. I started worrying. This wasn't the type of rain that was just a random sprinkle. This was a washout. Fortunately by 8 AM - the rain had passed and the sun was coming out.
We headed off to downtown Albany at 8:45 AM and we were right on schedule. By the time we hit the Empire State Plaza, there was all sorts of traffic. It wasn't too bad though. We pulled into the East Garage and found parking and headed over to the Plaza where I met the running group. Here we are pre-race.
Before I knew it - it was time to go and line up. They have you line up according to your estimated finish time. We took our position in the 31 minute area. Here is the sea of women that are lined up. And there are way more that you can't even see. Talk about crowded! It was so packed - but it was so very cool to be in that crowd - getting ready to go.
Next thing, I heard the blowhorn that signaled the start of the race. We started moving. Slowly. Very slowly - up the hill. It was kind of hard to run with all those people. But - eventually it started evening out and I found my rhythm and ran. And ran some more. I hit the 1 mile mark. Some people behind me said, "Ladies - we just the 1 mile mark!" People cheered. I weaved in and out of people. I passed people. Some people passed me. I totally lost my running group buds. It was impossible to stay together. I noticed many people through the park that had signs and that were cheering us on. It was so great.
Then I started wondering when I would hit the 2 mile mark. Darn. That distance between 1 and 2 seems SO much longer than the distance between 0 and 1. Finally I hit it. Then I started having conversations with myself about stopping and walking. So many people around me were walking. Oh, wouldn't that be so nice? But no. I kept going. I knew I had to. If I walked, I would never find my rhythm again. I kept running. I passed the second water stop and asked one of the volunteers to throw water on me. She did. That was nice.
I hit the 2.5 mile mark and I was dying. Literally. I felt like I wanted to vomit. Puke. Throw up all over the street. It was hot. My face felt hot. Luckily there was nice shade and luckily I didn't have a stitch in my side.
I ran back through the park and then I felt like I was almost there when I hit Madison Ave. I was in the home stretch. I could see the Freihofer's sign in the distance and then I passed the "400 meters to go" mark. I couldn't walk now! I had to run. Fast! Then I hit the downhill stretch and I did it. I ran through the finish line just under 34 minutes. The official results aren't posted yet - so I am hoping that my time was a little less.