See Kate Abbott 2011 National Marathon Race Report for comrade Kate's notes on her race. I leave home near the 7am starting time and jog-walk to the Forest Glen Metro station, ~0.7 miles. The train arrives promptly and takes me to the New York Avenue station, on N St NE, from which a short walk gets me to North Capitol just south of New York Av, the National Marathon mile 10. My timing is off by almost an hour, but fortunately I've got a windbreaker and survive, goosebumps on legs. Marathon winner Michael Wardian blasts past before 8am, along with half marathon leaders.
Then the crowd of runners thickens. I watch for Kate but would have missed her had she not seen me and shouted. We run together steadily for 10 miles, with GPS splits 10:02 10:23 9:57 9:58 9:51 9:50 9:36 9:48 10:11 9:37. The GPS trackfile shows the route, including my zig-zag about marathon mile 14, near 14th Place NE and Constitution Av NE, where I go back a few yards to snag a nice orange headband that was abandoned on the ground. It matches Kate's tangerine "Cody's Crew" outfit, her group that helps raise funds for research on a childhood cancer in memory of one victim. I also pick up three unopened energy gels that runners ahead of us have dropped on the street.
Conversation along the way is fun, as always. When we pass the Folger Shakespeare Library I discuss its First Folio collection and recommend visiting it. Anne and Greg Loomis run near us for a while; Greg remembers me from 2010-10-09 - Andiamo 2010 where he finished hours ahead of me. Caren Jew and I met him at 2009-01-04 - Massanutten Mountain Mayhem which he organized. Anne and he had their first son, Jason, only 8 months ago; this is her first marathon after that blessed event.
From the beginning today I've warned Kate that I might drop out at any moment and abandon her, as she abandoned me at mile 16 of the 2011-03-05 - Seneca Creek Greenway Trail 50k. My left-heel plantar fasciitis and left-leg hamstring aren't too bad, and I manage not to fall down even though I stumble on some of the irregular cobblestones near the DC waterfront. But when we see the new Washington Nationals baseball stadium and turn to cross the bridge at mile 20, I know there's a Metro station within a few blocks. So I bid Kate adieu and cheer her on her way. She finishes strong, sub-10 minute miles from there onward.
On the Metro green line homeward I met a nice young lady who has a bicycle with her and who has just done the Half Marathon in 2:10 or so. Her name is Pamela, and she's interested in trail running (I recommended the WHM), lives in Cleveland Park or some such not far from today's race course, comes from San Francisco, and has been up Mt. Kilimanjaro a couple of times and hiked in the Himalayas. Neat!
^z - 2011-04-04