Monday, April 21, 2008

So race day started with a 4:30am wake up call - from the gang back at LEGALLY BLONDE!  They had just finished the show and didn't think I'd answer, but I'd been sleeping fitfully the whole night so the ring of the phone made me jump a little and I groggily answered.  I had set the alarm to get up at 5:30am to eat a Power Bar and a banana anyway so it wasn't a big deal.  I knew I needed to eat, but wanted to make sure there was time to digest before leaving the hotel.  So I ate and reset the alarm to get up with just enough tome to dress before heading down to the lobby to meet everyone.  Luckily my roommate Eissa (our lovely training captain) was there to wake me as I did that silly thing where you change the time instead of the alarm time!

I had painstakingly set everything out the night before:  jersey, sneakers with Nike + sensor and race chip attached, race number with safely pins, my sport watch, gloves, long sleeved base layer, sports bra, long sleeved throwaway shirt, light jacket, pants, socks, and fuel belt with all of the following: 7 power Gels (raspberry creme) camera, ID, metro card, a few Euros, a pack of electrolyte powder, a pre made bottle of said powder, my iPod nano with the Nike+ receiver, and a small bag of pretzels.  It takes a lot of stuff to run 26. 2 miles!

So we all met in the lobby of our hotel and spent a bit second guessing our wardrobe choices and making trips to the lobby bathroom and adjust our bibs, and pacing.  It seemed like forever before we hit the streets en masse.  And as we walked the block to the Champs Elysee it all became real.  There they were - thousands of runners!  It wasn't easy keeping up with Coach Ramon as he weaved through the crowd, heading for the end of the start corral.

We all had bibs with colors indicating our start corral based on our expected finish time.  We're not exactly sure how those times got determined because, for the most part, they were waaaaay off.  My color was green which was the 4 hour finish time group.  Now I'm optimistic, but not that optimistic.  Ramon wisely headed for the last corral and we headed in.  Man was it crowded!  And they were mostly male!  And there were crazy people.  I especially enjoyed the man in the tiger suit.  No tiger head, just the tiger body suit.  A stocky, hairy man in a tiger suit.

More to come....

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