Saturday, August 13, 2011

Beach 2 Beacon


I had gone back and forth for a while about whether or not I was going to run this race or not...and by run I mean, line up with the walkers and see if I could cover the distance before they shut down the bag pick up at the finish and made you get it later in the week at the town office.

If this was any other race I would have skipped it all together and been a spectator, yet again. This was not just any other race though. The Beach to Beacon is Maine's largest road race. 11 countries and 41 states were represented. The race is head up by Joan Benoit Samuelson and brings in a lot of, ya know, Deena Kastor! (Although she made it to town and to the finish, she didn't run the race due to the flu. booo). This year the race sold out in 10 minutes.

Up until the race I had only run 2.5 miles at the most at one time since coming back from injury. I had logged 10 miles total since coming back from injury. Clearly running the Beach to Beacon was a smart choice. Right? I talked to my neighbor the night before and he asked what my plan was. I really had no idea. Run the first 2, walk 1, run 1, walk 1/2 and run the last 1/2??? I dunno...that sounded like a good idea. Just before we hung up he says "Just go out and have fun. Be glad you can move again. Enjoy it Sarah". Although I knew these things, and I had no expectations. I took his words to heart and really set out to have fun!

My super speedy friend Maddy who is coming back from injury offered to run along with me. I warned her that it was going to be a slogfest and will include walk breaks. She was totally cool with that and really helped me along the way.

Danielle, Maddy and I at the start

I met up with everyone at the start and we all chit chatted for a bit before all the super speedy runners set off to find their place in the mass of runners. We said our goodbyes and Maddy and I hung out at the back of the pack. Since we were planning on having fun we both brought our phones to take pictures, tweet and text while we were running!

Photo by Kevin Morris
The National Anthem was sung and we were off....well....kinda. It took us 5-6 minutes to actually cross the starting line. As we were walking up to it I was busy creating a new album on Facebook from my phone called "Beach 2 Beacon 2011". I joked with Maddy and said "as if I'm making a new album right now as we are about to cross the start!".

Mile 1

then we decided that this might be a fun place to stop since I was busy tweeting through the first water stop and didn't grab anything.

Mile 3

stopped to take a picture with the best sign ever...

also got to run under this awesome flag...

Mile 6.2

Photo by Kevin Morris
Overall, I was so pleased with the race. I ran it super slow but I had so. much. fun. Not being stressed out about my time or pace was a good feeling. Like I mentioned, this course has so much crowd support it felt nice to be able to take it all in and enjoy it. I can't thank Maddy enough for slogging through it with me. I know I would have stopped to walk much earlier if it hadn't been for her. 
Maddy, Brendan, Danielle and I
Once at the finish we met up with tons of running friends, took pictures, talked about future races and watched the awards ceremony. 

Runner Army

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