May 18, 2014 8:00 AM
Written by Owen:
I actually signed up for this race in 2012, for the May of 2013 race. Then just before the 2013 race, they emailed everyone saying there was construction along the route and we had he option to either run a revised course or defer our entry to 2014. As much as I wanted to run the race in 2013, I really wanted to run their original route, so I deferred. So I have been looking forward to running this race for two years.
My mom and step-dad have birthdays in February. I bought them an entry for the Pocono 5k for their birthday present. It starts after the marathon, but finishes long before I finish. So Friday night, we drove to my mom's house in Virginia, stayed the night then rode with them on Saturday to Pennsylvania.
|Thanks to Gramps for driving so I can be a passenger for once!|
|The streetlights in Hershey are shaped like Kisses.|
|Outside Hershey's Chocolate World|
|The kids got selected for a survey about Mounds (none of them like Coconut)|
We signed up for, and paid a small fortune for, a chocolate tasting class. It was fun, but I would recommend against it, based on the price. The free chocolate tour is more entertaining, is free, and you get just as much chocolate at the end of it.
After Hershey, we piled back in the car and drove to Stroudsburg. We got checked in to the hotel, and then found a really fun restaurant called "Sarah Street Grill". I had a hard time enjoying the food because my tooth that I chipped several months earlier was really hurting. (I would get it pulled later the next week).
|Michael and Kyle enjoying their food.|
|My mom loves her sushi.|
Sunday morning I got up and Torre took me to the start of my race. Pocono is a point to point race, and they don't provide shuttles to the start before the race (weird), they provide shuttles to the start after the finish, so you can pick up your car.
|Selfie at the start|
The race started, the weather was excellent, and I was feeling good. This course went through the Pocono Mountains, largely downhill but a lot of small uphills that I overlooked when looking at the course profile:
|Those uphills don't look like much, but they took their toll.|
I stuck to my goal pace for a 3:22 marathon (7:42 average pace per mile) until about mile 19, then I started slowing down. It had only been 14 days since my marathon in Rhode Island and my body couldn't maintain that speed. The marathon finished around the high school track (a really nice one), and I managed to crank out a 7:26 pace for that last quarter mile, even though I was really hurting (mile 24 was 9:37, mile 25 was 8:56, and mile 26 was 9:25).
Meanwhile, my mom, Torre, and Michael had run their 5k and really enjoyed it. They were all there cheering for me as I finished. I loved finishing on the track.
|I love my post-race foot massage I get from Alicia.|