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Sometime in June I decided to make the <b>Philadelphia Marathon</b> my second 26.2. I live just outside Philly, and felt like this might be a good race for me to run. I had 2 goals in mind -- run a good race and feel good about it at the end, and try to get the sub-4:00 time. I failed to achieve both of those goals in my first 26.2 at the NJ Marathon in April.<br><br>
Over the summer, as my training began shaping up, Philly was becoming the gathering to be a part of. A huge number of 30's, and eventually KR's from all over, were planning on joining in the festivities of this weekend. I could write a whole report about how great it was to meet and spend time with so many great people, but I'll stick to the short version of that, and concentrate on the running. The running report will be long enough. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/biggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Very Happy"> In short, the Friday nite, Saturday dinner, and Sunday post-race celebrations (organized by the fabulous <b>Beaker</b> and <b>Theia</b>!) were more fun and rewarding than I ever could have imagined. It has been said a million times, but I'll say it again: this is an <i>outstanding</i> group of people.<br><br>
Back to the running. Sometime in late September or early October, <b>CoachT</b> (who had just BQ'd at NJ in April) was dealing with some injuries and decided to offer to pace me at Philly. It was an awfully generous and rather insane idea. I said yes. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/biggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Very Happy"> BUT, I told him that at any point if he felt strong enough to run his own race, or if my slow pace was too ridiculous for him, he should go ahead. He insisted he would not do that.<br><br>
Sunday morning arrived and I was to meet Trevor at the 4 hour pacer at the start. I was waiting in a horribly slow porta potty line, and eventually sent my twin sister to find Trevor and tell him I'd be there shortly. With about 5 minutes to the start, I left the line and went to meet my pacer. I figured I'd hit a quick pit stop sometime early in the race, and I'd be fine... Trevor and I lined up at the start with <b>Dave (dob259)</b> and soon we were off.<br><br>
The first few miles were very frustrating. The road was packed with people and some were even walking within the first mile and a half. I know everyone has their own race to run, but it was tough to settle into a pace for the first several miles. We kept moving, though, and by the second mile, I stripped off my throw-away shirt and was warmed up nicely. I was concerned about the weather forecast, but ended up being dressed just fine. I had my short sleeve Kickrunners shirt, arm warmers, gloves, a headband that I took on and off a few times, and shorts. Since we only got sprinkled on, I was comfortable.<br><br>
After coming to a dead stop at a water station somewhere around mile 4 and having to make our way around that, we got back into a good pace and kept moving and started ticking off miles. I can't tell you what our splits were, though, because one of CoachT's rules was that I was not allowed to look at my watch. I didn't the entire race. I let him worry about that.<br><br>
We hit the hill that everyone knew was coming, and around mile 9ish I decided to try for that quick pit stop. I thought I picked a good spot, but it turns out we were waiting on some slow people. We lost about 3 minutes there -- agh! -- but I felt like I needed to make that pit stop or I'd be thinking about it the whole way. Ok, lesson learned, off we went. We made our way back toward the art museum, and knew the crowds would provide some good energy. It took me a bit to get my legs settled again, but I took my second gel around mile 12-13 and saw my family as we made our way around the circle. My sister jumped in and ran with us for a few miles, and then she peeled off. Those were the miles just past the half where another hill came in, and I started cursing the people that said this wasn't a hilly course. Trev insisted I ride the downhills -- "They're free miles, they don't count," he kept telling me. UM, Trev, they're not free; I paid for them on the up. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/rolleyes.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Roll Eyes (Sarcastic)"><br><br>
As we made our way toward Manayunk, we started seeing the elites and then some of our friends pass us on their way in. We saw <b>PacerChris</b>, <b>PhillyTom</b> (what?!) and <b>Notey</b>, <b>LL</b>, and <b>Bob.</b> It was great to see them running so well! Although my legs were starting to feel it by mile 18, I was still feeling ok. Took another gel around mile 19, and then the incline/decline in Manayunk started to take it's toll. Got a side stitch just as we approached the turn-around at 20. Worked it out as we made our way up another hill -- Trevor grabbed my hand at this point and kept me moving forward, but I had to stop at the top for a second. Felt like I might puke. Didn't, so off we went.<br><br>
I should mention that the 20-21 mile point in this race was huge for me. I was feeling ok, and I started believing that no matter what our finish time was (I knew we were slow, but didn't know what our time was) I was going to achieve my first goal. I felt a thousand times better here than I did at this point in NJ.<br><br>
We approached the Falls Bridge, and I stopped briefly again just to stretch my hamstrings. I would do this a couple times in these last few miles. I knew what the last 4 miles of this race would have in store for us, having run the art museum loop countless times in training and at the Distance Run (half mary), and I was excited to be so close. By mile 24, Trevor was talking to me and I had to tell him I wasn't concentrating on what he was saying anymore. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/biggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Very Happy"> I kept apologizing to him -- I knew we were slower than we hoped, but he just kept looking over at me, and I'd smile and say, "I'm ok," and we kept moving. We made our way up to the finish, saw my family and our <b>KR crew</b>, waved hellos to them -- how awesome to see them all -- and Trevor put his arm around me. I grabbed his hand and we crossed the line together.<br><br><b>He never left my side</b>. He carried my water bottle for many of the second half miles. What a trooper. <i>He kept me going.</i><br><br>
This marathon was a good one. I finished feeling good about my race -- I knew I did the best I could. While I didn't get the sub-4, <b>we finished in 4:08:20, so I ended up with an 11+ minute PR</b>. I'll take it.<br><br>
We made our way through the food tent, saw my family and our KR cheering crew (who had run great races of their own!) and headed back to hotels and home to shower and head to the post-race party. It was a day I'll never forget. Even my parents and sister had their moment -- they were interviewed live on channel 3!<br><br><b>Thank you, CoachT</b>, for a fantastic race day. And thank you to all my kickrunner friends for a wonderful weekend <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/biggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Very Happy">
 

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Way to go Solar! Loved reading your report. Congrats on a huge accomplishment!<br><br><i>But, we would like a detailed report on the other non-run festivities too. How come none of the Philly runners are sharing details about that!??!</i>
 

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I think I saw your twin and it confused the heck out of me! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Smile"><br><br>
That was quite a PR you had and excellent company as well!
 

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Awesome job - an 11 minute PR while dragging Trevor's ass the whole way?! I'll bet your back hurts from carrying him!<br><br>
I want to know both his and your official times...Trevor strikes me as the kind of guy that would lag behind you by a second or two at the starting mat and then finish alongside you so his chip time is 1-2 seconds faster than you. That guy - he's so selfish!
 

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good job!!!!!!!!! Congrats on a PR.
 

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I checked out your split times and even if you didn't get sub 4:00 out there, you got a good race experience of running with negative splits. That's a big huge improvement over New Jersey and should likely help you with the next one you do, I think.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hey -- I was going to throw this in the original report, but my computer had different idea:<br><br><img alt="" src="http://i134.photobucket.com/albums/q111/loralbi/11-19-2007-3-1.jpg" style="border:0px solid;"><br><br>
It's fuzzy, but you can see me smiling. I haven't stopped. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/biggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Very Happy">
 

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Great work <b>Lora</b>. Reading all the reports just makes me that much more jealous about not being able to be there. So happy for you!
 

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This is a great recap of the race Lora. The only thing I'd change in there is to mention that I really did nothing. You did all of the work. I was just lucky enough to be there to witness it.<br><br>
You ran a great race - you had nice even splits, your form never broke down and you did, in fact, keep smiling all the way to the end. Congratulations - you certainly earned it.
 

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Lora, you did great! I didn't get a chance to talk to you at the pub afterwards so I didn't know how you did until now. Huge congratulations to you!!!! I hope I can do as well as you did once I get to marathon distances. I look forward to meeting up with you and getting a chance to talk more at future local events.
 

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Congratulations Lora! I love that photo of you and Trevor, and that is a great race report.
 

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<b>solar</b>, what a fantastic RR. I am so happy for you. <b>Trev</b> - what a cool, cool thing you did. My virtual hat is off to both of you.
 

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<span style="font-size:large;">CONGRATS, <b>Lora</b>!!!!</span><br><br>
You ran an awesome race and smiled the whole way. That, my friend, is what it's all about. I am so happy for you!
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/hello2.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="hello1"><br><br>
Congratulations!<br><br>
Pacers ROCK don't they?! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Smile"><br><br>
Nice job the two of you!
 

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Congratulations, solar! That was a wonderful thing you did, letting CoachT tag along with you. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/smile.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Smile"><br><br>
And before you think I'm joking about that, I'll tell you that last year I paced a Coolrunner at Philly. It was one of the most rewarding marathons I've ever run. I'm betting that you gave as much of a gift as you received on Sunday.<br><br>
And trust me, 4 hours will happen, if you let it.
 

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<b>Lora</b> - it was finally great to meet you! It seemed like you had a smile the whole time you were there in Philly<br><br>
I think you had a lot to smile about with this race. 11-minute PR is a great result, especially dragging along <b>Coach T</b> <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/wink.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink"> (love that pic of you two at the end), and with family in tow as well (getting some TV time - that must've been fun!)<br><br>
I know we talked about your plans for next year, but one task sticks out in my mind - where the heck can we land a swim cap for <b>Voo</b>? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/biggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Very Happy">
 

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Congrats Lora. Nice report. Under 4:00 is just around the corner. It was nice running with you and Trevor while I could.
 

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Solartwinpowered,<br><br>
You did friggin' awesome. 2 marathon medals earned and a 11 minute PR ain't no joke.<br><br>
That CoachT gets my vote too for rolling with you.<br><br>
your pal,<br><br>
oache
 
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