Queens, NY. Home of the Mets (choke, cough) and... other things, I guess. I'll admit I don't know much about Queens, but that's one of the great things about this 5 borough challenge. I will see parts of NYC I would never see otherwise. And I did.
First of all, I had to wake up at 3:30am to get in my ice coffee and pre-race ritual done so I could make the bus at 89th and 5th by 4:30am. I arrived, before dawn, at MacNeill Park in College Point, Queens around 5:30am. The park was already strewn with runners stretching, sleeping, or reading by the light of the streetlights. The race started at 7, quite humid but overcast. The start was pretty congested and I couldn't really get going until after the second mile. Lots of hills and turns on this course. And, WOW, there are some VERY impressive houses in Queens....like, MANSIONS. In Queens!!! Who'd a thunk it?
I felt great up until somewhere between mile 10 and 11. Then, bad things started to happen. My legs felt great, but I just felt exhausted, low energy. The powergels and gatorade weren't helping, in fact I think I was feeling weighed down by it all.
I had set 2:15 as my goal, but I felt so good, I had been actually shooting for 2 hrs. After 10 miles, I resigned myself to the fact that I wasn't going to break 2 hrs today. Too hot. So I took a couple of walking/stretching breaks. I finished hard and then stopped too soon. There was a water spray at the finish, which was nice. But, when I actually stopped, I got very dizzy and grabbed a tree for support. I was ushered into the medical tent (my first time!!!) where they got my feet elevated and gave me a salt packet (gross). I was fine after a few minutes, no nausea or anything. Shaky legs for a few minutes, that's all. A French toast bagel (ooooo!!) and an apple from the volunteers before I went to pick up my bag. I was grateful for the change of clothes and the bus back to within 5 blocks of my apartment.
Queens was fun, even though it was far from my best. I'm glad it's over, though.
One more race in NYC this year. When I finish the Staten Island, I will have completed my requirements for guaranteed entry into the NY Marathon 2009. Then it's on to the Philadelphia Marathon.
Racing miles to date: 71.4
Next race: Staten Island Half-Marathon 10/14/08