MINNESOTA - Twin Cities Marathon
10/7/2012              https://www.tcmevents.org/
State #32
Finish time:  5:23:12
I really wanted this
marathon to be fun.  I had
too many unfun runs, and
I knew if this one wasn't
fun, I wasn't going to want
to run any more.  I also
had to have a good run
for time.  This run has a
very strict 6 hour cut-off.  
Not only that, but I was
riding the bus there with
my old training group from
Kansas City, so they
would all be waiting for me
to finish.  
To try to make it fun and
have fresh legs I did
everything I could think
of.  I saw the chiropractor
twice, and got two sports
massages.  I ate right all
week, and vowed to enjoy my run.  
When I signed up for the bus ride, one of my good friends was going, and I was going to room with her.  She got injured, so not only was I going to be
paying the high-dollar hotel room by myself, but now I didn't "know" anyone on the bus.  I had ran with many of them, but since they are all faster than
me, I never really talked to them.  Plus there were a lot of new people I didn't know at all.  I did some pre-work and sent facebook friend requests to
everyone I could find, trying to get to know people in advance, but I still felt kinda left out of the loop.  Someone I didn't know sat next to me on the
bus, and come to find out, she had ran the Kona marathon too.  What a coincidence.  Not only that, but she was the only other person on the bus
who was projecting to run slower than 5 hours.  She was thinking 5:40, I was thinking 5:45.  Perfect!  We could run together.  
Race morning, the groups of folks who all knew each other were giving each other encouragement, and I was just hanging out.  When we got to the
start, I found the small group of maniacs, and got a picture.  This was a huge race, so I was surprised to see so few maniacs.  
Feeling a little less left-out having found my maniacs, I headed to the start,
but I could find my bus-mate Lisa.  I looked for her everywhere, but there
were 3 corrals full of runners, so I ended up having to start without her.  I
had gotten through my first two miles at a faster pace than I wanted (gotta
start slow) and so I pulled out my camera to take a picture.  That's right.  I
was FINALLY running with my camera.  I was trying everything to make this
fun again.  I slowed down to take a picture and Lisa caught up to me.  
Yay!  Then we came to a hill that I wanted to walk, but she was feeling
good so off she went.  I continued on, enjoying the scenery.  I kept
stopping and asking folks to take my picture.  This one was by a lovely lake
with lots of pretty foliage.  I asked the spectator to take my picture with the
lake.  Do you see the lake?  Crazy spectator lady.  
A few miles further on, we could see the pretty skyline across the lake.  I
asked another spectator to take my picture, with the skyline.  Do you see
it?  Yeah, it's all hidden behind the bush...  another crazy spectator lady...
Thank goodness there were no handy spectators when I got to the
bagpipers, or I would have had a picture with me and a corner of a kilt.  
Instead I have a crazy selfie, with the awesome bagpipers in the
Selfie on a bridge.  Pretty stuff, this was about mile 18.  I was still happy,
feeling good, and on a great pace.  
Found a runner to take this picture for me.  HILARIOUS.  I loved this sign.  
One of the things I had been thinking about during this marathon
(because I have LOTS of time to think during my marathons) was how fun
it would be to spectate at the Kansas City marathon.  I had been trying to
come up with fun signs - it's hard to be original on marathon signs.  (I will
NOT hold up a sign that says, "Chuck Norris never ran a marathon." - it's
way overdone!)  Anyway, loved this sign.  
At about mile 22 I caught up to Lisa.  She was still looking strong and
doing good.  We were both much faster than our predicted times, and
she was close to setting a personal record.  I told her she could do it,
told her to get on it, and to not let me catch her again.  I was excited for
her, and that helped me keep going too.  Then I handed the camera to
a spectator again.  "Would you please take my photo with the church in
the background?"  Someone needs to give photography lessions to the
spectators in Twin Cities.  At least they can ring a good cow-bell.  
I was trying to keep Lisa in my sights, but she was quickly leaving
me in the dust.  Finally I could see the finish line, and a good
photo op.  Back to selfies again.  I think this is St. Paul's
Cathedral?  It was right before the finish line.  I was having a
fabulous time.  I hadn't been grumpy once.  I was having an easy
sub 5:30 run, which is what I know I'm capable of.  I think if I hadn't
ran those stupid two marathons last weekend, I might have even
been able to PR today.  It was the great fun marathon I needed!

When I got to the finish, I found out the Lisa did set her PR, and I
had EASILY hit my 5th fastest marathon.  Now, if only I could
figure out what the secret was, so I could do this at every