The start was 1 hour away from me and I was thinking start time was 7am but when going thru the bus schedule, SARTA was busing us from the fairground to the stadium, I didn't understand why they were ending at 545, oops race starts at 6am which means I had to be up and out the door by 4am.
I got to the fairground around 515am but then there was a lot of traffic trying to get in, ot took a while for the volunteers to finally work all the kinks out, sat in traffic for about 20mins not worries except when I got out of the car to get on the bus realized I really got to pee and there was no porta potties at the fairground. Luckily it was a short drive to the stadium but then getting there still no potties in sight, finally went into the stadium and used one of the locker room restroom. After taking care of business, went back out to find the 2hr pace group, got in place and with 10mins to the start suck down a gel.
A bit of confusion, since the location we were starting was clearly with flags but we were told to move down the hill to the start location, apparently that was a false location since we had to walk down about 400meters to the real start line, then anthem and we were off.
With the heat advisory, they did a good job having water every 1 mile and add that to neighborhood also setting up water stops, we had plenty to drink. The goal was to run under 2 hours and I had the pace group in my sight, about mile 2 a friend L,I haven't seen in almost 2 my years ran by me calling my name to say hi, wavy exchanged greetings then she and 2 others friends moved on.
Around mile 4, I kind of wonder why I am constantly racing through a race and missing all the fun, this seem to be happening more often, there was quite a bit of crowd out cheering us on, including some wonderful nuns sitting in front of their convent, I decided at that point to make the detour to high five them and get some blessing. Around mile 6, I noticed L walking in front of me, I stopped and asked her what was hurting and she said something about her fingers and feet, the problem with this race was that even thou the sun didn't come out it was still very hot and a lot of people made the mistake of not taking fluid, I decided to run with L to get her to the finish. This was a big decision since I had no idea how long this was going to be, after I made the decision, I reaccess L's condition and determine she is severely dehydrated so needed to get to the next water station and have her properly hydrate, 2 cups of gatorade and 1 cup of water.
The strategy once L was properly hydrated was 4mins running 1 min walking, we were still running a good pace 920-930 but when we walk we were very slow, L was very disappointed when the 210 pace group when by, but I was able to use this to motivate her to keep going, around mile 11 decided we should just start running straight out since we were walking too slow and around mile 12+ when we could hear the announcer in the stadium, I decided it was time to get it over we and see if we can push to come in under 215, so ran the last couple of meters at a 852 pace, just told L don't think just follow and she did great, I was so proud of her.
Finish grab my stuff and had to head home to start father's day celebration, Canton did a great job, lots of people mentioned the hilly trail but to be honest except for one location wasn't really aware of the the rest of the hills. I really expect great things for this race, everything was done just about right, looking forward to next year.
Finish Time: 2:14:48