|Runners love cake.|
|Basically, the greatest cake topper of all time ever. Thanks Melanie!|
|We had the nicest tow truck drivers. It was great. Thanks AAA!|
|We spent a lot of time in tow trucks...|
The race starts and finishes at Cascade Locks, and during the course of the race you run over 5 different bridges. The first and most impressive of the bridges is the Bridge of the Gods (that's also the name of the race).
|Our view from the Washington side of the race. The bridge links Washington and Oregon together.|
|It's a long way down.|
|And he's allllllll mine.|
|The mermaid and the Scotsman take Oregon by storm.|
|This is the "Stairway to Heaven" section of the course. It was FUN. Because 4 flights of stairs in the middle of a race is always fun.|
|Getting close to the turnaround point. Alas, we didn't get to run on those two higher bridges.|
|Obligatory swag shot. Half marathon number 82, in case you were keeping track.|
So we arrived at the start line of the East Canyon Marathon a bit undertrained. But we sure as hell weren't going to back out of the race. We are stubborn and we like medals.
|Here we are at mile 14, pretending that we feel fine and we can totally make it another 12 miles.|
Even though we were moving at the pace of a snail trapped in molasses, it felt like the miles went by quickly. We'd pass a mile marker and what seemed like mere moments later, we would pass another one. I guess that means we were enjoying the course and each others' company so much that we didn't notice the time ticking on by.
|There was also a delightful selection of haunted buildings to distract our attention.|
Even with the mid-race boost, we were starting to feel our lack of training. It was around mile 20 that things started really hurting. And not just in the "oh I hit the wall" way. The scenery was still lovely, so we tried focusing on that.
|See? Super neat scenery.|
Now y'all know that I've finished dead last before. More than once, even. It's really not a bad thing. It didn't ruin my life or stop me from running a race ever again (obviously). But I really didn't want Scott to come in last on his first marathon because he decided to stick with me. He just wanted to get to the finish line so he could sit down, I'm not sure he cared what order we got there in...
Okay, see that mailbox? We'll start running at that mailbox. Then we can walk at that stop sign up ahead there. Got it? Let's go! Oh wow. That stop sign seems really far away. Is it actually moving away from us?! Why aren't we any closer?! We made it! Phew. Okay... see that parked truck up there? We'll run when we get to that truck. Hmm. We got to that truck faster than I would have liked, but here we go!
Three miles of that and we were approaching the finish line! Finally! And then we got lost... Not lost like we didn't know where the finish was, but lost like we couldn't tell the route that they wanted us to take to get there. It was at the Morgan high school, and there was approximately a zillion people in the area for multiple high school sporting events. There were cars and people everywhere. We followed the path that the arrows pointed to, and ended up running the wrong way towards the finish arch. The finish line crew looked as confused as we were. The distance on our watches wasn't at 26.2 yet, so we ran past the arch, kept running up the road, then turned around and made it to the finish line with the proper distance.
|Marathon #22 done.|
Right before the race started, one of Scott's friends, Pam, recognized me we started chatting. It turns out that her pace and my pace are basically the same. So we ended up running the whole race together. I was tired, and it was only Pam's second half marathon. And of course neither of us let on that we were both dying, so we continued to keep pushing each other through to the end. I know I would have had a much slower finish time if I hadn't been worried about slowing her down.
|Finishing up half marathon #83. Photo credit Scott M. Stringham.|
|We're almost done! Wheeeeeee! Also, isn't that a great view? Running in Utah never disappoints.|
|This race always has the most beautiful medals.|
So stay tuned for all of that. Because we all know how the best laid plans tend to go! Until then, happy running!