I am going to preface this by saying… THIS WAS THE BEST DAMN RACE I HAVE EVER RUN. I was incredibly impressed with this race, the course, the way it was run, like I am still on a high from it and it should be on everyone’s bucket list, and I mean EVERYONE.
This was a whole family affair race. My brother flew in from Arizona, my mom, boyfriend Chris and myself all ran it and it was a lovely weekend. Flying into Indianapolis is very easy and getting around was simple too. We stayed at the Indianapolis Downtown Marriott and I recommend you booking your stay there if you are coming from out of town. It is right across the street from the expo at the convention center, a block away from the start line and in the perfect location for all of the restaurants and things to do downtown. When we checked in there was a gift bag with a water bottle and granola bars for us which I thought was very kind of the Marriott and a great idea.
The expo was ok, they had a bunch of booths but the Flying Pig last year will hands down win my vote for the best expo ever. They had a bunch of Indy cars through the expo with the pace car up front for pictures. Meb Keflezghi ran the race so he was also there to sign autographs and take pictures. They gave out long sleeve Asics shirts which were better than the cotton long sleeves in Ann Arbor. We got our packets and picked up some last minute items.
For those of you visiting, later that evening we went to the Yard house because it was nearby and St. Elmo’s and Harry and Izzy’s were booked (FYI those are Indy famous Steak Houses so if you can, go!) The next day after the race we went to Café Patachou and it was the perfect breakfast spot, so highly recommend as well.
The race began with Meb waving the green flag and all of us running down Washington St. past the NCAA museum and the Zoo. The course was pancake flat with the exception of a “hill” or two. It was also stocked very well with aid stations pretty much at every mile dubbed “Pit Area”. I was surprised to find that Gatorade was at every 2-3 miles, unlike water which was at every aid station. There were also “Pit Area’s” with the entertainment. I am telling you, there was more entertainment at the race in 13.1 miles then there is at ANY Rock n Roll race. There was one performer or band or DJ and dance group after another. My favorite was the tap dancers and line dancing group at miles 4 and 5.
My race was going very well and I was clocking a 7:20 pace the entire first 6 miles. My goal for this race was to PR but mainly to PR my pace. I had been training with my boyfriend but also changing my stride to keep up with him but also run faster, and it seemed to work with our 10-mile training run we did the week before and during this race.
|The moment I knew I PR’d|
Mile 12 finally rolled around along North White River Pkwy and I was doing the math in my head of what my predicted time would be. It looked like if I kept up my pace I was definitely PR, but if I could kick my butt into gear for the last mile, I could finish under 1:40. So once we hit the bridge to West New York Street I picked it up. I started running a 7:30 pace increasing it to 7:15 to the finish line. Channel 13 was the main sponsor for mile 13 (get it?) and the streets were packed with spectators cheering us on and yelling our names (because they were on our bibs).
|Ringing the PR Bell|
I kept looking at my watch as I was getting closer to the checkered finish line and as I came across I knew I did it. 1:39:53! I beat my personal best by 3 minutes, 4 years to the weekend of my last PR. I was so overwhelmed but turned around to see if Chris was behind me. He started 12 minutes after me but his goal was to try and catch up. He came in 6 minutes after me with a time of 1:33 and my brother then finished shortly after in 1:46. We all got our trophy medals and made our way to the finishers area. By this time, it was cloudy and getting chilly so the fact that McDonalds was there giving away free coffee was clutch! Brighthouse also had a booth offering athletes or their family members to call someone if they didn’t run with their phone. The post-race party also had chocolate milk, beer and a PR bell to ring amongst other things.
Overall, this was the best race I have every run. The organizers really did an amazing job and put on an excellent event. You can tell that Indy knows that they are doing especially with the 40th running of the marathon and 100th running of the Indy 500 culminating all in this month. I typically don’t like to run races more than once, but this one, I will definitely be back for.
Ehh…not a fan: Expo could be better