Picture stolen from Derrick's blogAnother year pacing Cowtown, but with much nicer weather. Jason and I started the morning off with a couple of Whataburger tacquitos before hooking up with our fellow pacers at Pizzeria Uno before the run.
Fighting through the enormous crowd of runners and spectators on the way to the starting corral, I suddenly realized how much the Cowtown had grown up. Final estimates put the number of entrants over 20,000. Howdy, folks. Welcome to a BIG running event.
Waiting for the start, I chatted with several familiar faces. Chris, Mario, and the crew from FWRunCo's training groups were hitting the ultra. I ran into Derrick, who was running his first race since Rocky Raccoon. I also met Lance T., a fellow attorney with some common clients.
About six or seven miles into the run, Jason and I had a group of about ten runners joining us. Over the next thirteen miles, however, we would lose all of them, as the heat and the distance took its toll, slowing each runner's pace below ours. By the time we reached mile twenty, Jason and I were on our own.
So we decided to stop for doughnuts. Seriously--I snagged a kolache and a chocolate twist at the Donut Palace. Just the right amount of carbs, fat, and protein to get me going.
My knee started giving me problems around mile twenty four, but there was no turning back.
We trudged along, and crossed the finish line in 5 hours, 35 minutes -- five minutes faster than last year, and five minutes off our overall pace goal. Had we been with other runners trying to hit a 5:30 finish time, I'm certain we would have kept the pace and pulled through. But after all our pacees (?) dropped back, there didn't seem much point in pushing it.
Next up -- Waco.