Sunday was an unseasonably warm day in Wisconsin; this became a problem for me about mile 22 of the Cellcom Green Bay Marathon.
Heat exhaustion? No. Heat stroke? No, thank you. Problem was that although it was hot, I was on pace to run a 2:54 marathon and finish third.
At 2:35 minutes in, police started telling me, “The race has been canceled.” Canceled!?! Straight away I forgot the 2+ hours of work in sauna-like conditions and started thinking about the preparation, other races I could have chosen, and the faithful support of my family to get me there.
I pressed on and at each intersection police warnings got more severe. Between mile 22 and 24 their caution turned from “The race is canceled…But you can keep running,” to “You need to stop…We would like for you to get off the course.” Having police all but pull out handcuffs to stop my running was a new phenomenon. In the quandary, I ran on although slowing off my pace to listen to police warnings and chat with male runners I passed. My folks and husband cheered me into pushing hard through the last mile and because of them I was able to finish third in 2:59:40. Unofficially.
Race coordinators ultimately did the right thing to award the purse to the top five male and female finishers, which makes for a happier ending. Not the PR I’d planned on achieving but that leaves more fuel to get me chomping at the bit for the next race. Plus, I felt so prepared throughout, and I promise to share some of my secret recipes for marathon success.
Happy spring marathoning! Never a dull moment, right?