This coming Saturday I will be running my 13th Grandmas Marathon and my wife and youngest daughter will be running their first Garry Bjorklund 1/2 marathon. They will get to join me in the experience of running along the beautiful lake on old highway 61, moving on to London road, up Lemon drop hill, down Superior street, around the DECC, passing that damn boat and then the thrill of finishing in Canal Park. (Oh about the boat comment, we have always joked that they have us run past the finish line so we can run by the DECC and by the boat just so we don't forget to take the tour of the William Irvin.)
It's also the 20th anniversary of my first marathon which was my first Grandmas in 1993. In that race, I went out too fast and eventually got to the finish in just over 4 hours. I do remember telling my running buddy Scott H., his friend Michael and my wife, that I would never do it again. Of course a few hours later we were discussing when our next marathon would be. I then ran Grandmas for 10 consecutive years until 2003 when I didn't get my entry in, in-time (I waited a week which was too long). I ran it again in 2004, skipped 2005 because of a severe ankle sprain and then ran it one more time in 2006. After 2006 we concluded we could do a marathon in pretty much any state for the cost of going to Duluth and staying in a hotel with their 2 night minimum, our last year we paid over $700 to stay at the Edgewater.
I go into this years event, under-trained, slightly injured and overweight. I am pretty sure I will finish it based on my Med City run a few weeks back. For that marathon, my plan worked for about the first 20 miles (well at least 15 :-) and I held on for 6 more which may be what I do on Saturday. As to my anticipated race time, if all things go as planned I hope to finish in about 5 1/2 hours, if not then in under 6. As I am approaching this marathon with only one main objective: to enjoy myself for every mile. I intend to soak this one in and savor the experience, the only concern I have is of course the weather and here's why:
|Forecast from Weather.Com for Duluth|
|This forecast is from Northland News for Duluth|
|And this one's from AccuWeather.com for Duluth|