I went into the 2015 Grandmas with no concerns about finishing just a big question on what my pace would be and what time I might get.
We did our new tradition for Grandmas, camped at Pattison State Park just south of Superior. It's quite cost effective and low key. Again this year, the forecast was for rain. That's getting to be a tradition. Anyway, we originally were coming up on Thursday but with a lot going on at work for both Karyn and me, we decided to just come up Friday morning. We arrived at Pattison, quickly got our camp up and then went to the DECC for packet pickup and spaghetti.
As always the DECC was packed with folks for the expo and packet pick-up but I endured the crowds and we enjoyed the spaghetti one more year. Karyn and I discussed multiple options for the race, she originally was going to sign-up for the Irvin, realized she was too late, thought about taking the train to the start, again too late. So she said she would drive me to the start line. It worked out great as we were able to go into Two Harbors, use the rest room and get some coffee and do the last few things before the start. It had started to rain and it looked like the thunderstorms were going to cause delays. The person at the coffee shop said the lake would push the storms south so we would be good for the race. I went ahead and had Karyn drop me off, thankfully we had a cheap poncho in our camping supplies, it kept me somewhat dry as the rain became more intense. All I did was wait in the pouring rain in the restroom line right up to the start. That's the nice part of being a back of the pack runner, no reason to push up through the crowd.
The race started and I was enjoying how much better I felt than the year before, I had some foot pain but no knee pain and with the marathons in May, I had confidence in my fueling strategy. So I just kind of cruised through the miles and the rain. I saw Karyn a couple of times and asked her to bring my other shoes so that I could try switching to reduce or change the pain in my foot. I have come to really like the Brooks Pure Cadence's which were the shoes I wore in my previous 3 marathons. I had recently bought a pair of Kinvara's as I thought they might make a decent alternative and I picked them up for $37.99, who could pass up that deal :-). In a training run right before Grandmas I discovered that the Kinvaras change my foot pain so I was hoping that switching to dry shoes and different pain would get me to the finish a bit quicker.
Turned out that they helped by changing the pain, but pain is pain so they didn't help me out too much. I made my way onto London Road had my traditional beers and then worked my way to the finish. Along London Road, I decided getting the MRI for the foot was going to happen as I needed to find out what was going on. I can't remember what if anything I have posted about the foot but the pain is in the arch, right where the Posterior Tibial tendon attaches to the Navicular bone in the foot. My Doctor., said it was either a nasty case of tendinitis or a navicular stress fracture and getting the MRI to let him diagnose it was my best option. I told him I would deal with it after Grandmas. Anyway, I slowed down quite a bit along London road right before Lemon Drop and then the pain equalized so I was able to pick up my running with the same amount of pain as walking so I decided to run again and I meandered my way to the finish.
Afterward, we went to Sammy's for pizza, our long time tradition, run the marathon and then swing in for some pizza at the downtown Sammy's. Never a wait and nothing tastes as good after a marathon then a slice of Sammy's and a cold beer.
Overall, I was happy with my day, and although my time was slow, it was my fastest Grandmas since 2004.