It was a great race, and I'm so happy to have run it, even if I did have to put up with watching an F-22 flyby (they had an F-16 fly over too, which made up for the presence of the F-22).
Ok, back to the race. I started out with "Pacer Jim" and a group of other aspiring 2-hour'ers. Pacer Jim promised to get us to the finish line by the 2 hour mark if we stayed with him. When we hit the 3 mile mark (after the easiest run up The Hill ever!) I struck out on my own at a slightly faster pace. When I came to the 5 mile mark, I thought "Really? Already?" and I hit the 10 mile mark at exactly 90 minutes, well ahead of the 9:10 per mile pace I needed.
Apparently I slowed down over the next few miles, because I Pacer Jim and his remaining 2 hour crew caught up with me a little beyond the 12 mile point. I finished a little ahead of them.
Crossing the finish line was amazing and slightly disorienting. I think I had a mild, temporary case of PTSD. My head was in a fog and I couldn't think clearly, as I shuffled through a post-race food line, collecting food with no idea if I wanted to eat it or not. It was nearly half an hour before I felt coherent enough to call home and tell my family I'd finished. Now it's 7:30pm and I'm pretty much all better. Well, I'm still a bit sore, tired and dehydrated (amazing considering how much water I've consumed since finishing the race), but all in all, I'm feeling alright.
Interesting side note: The local Air Force "Band of Flight" played as part of the after-race festivities. I remember seeing similar bands when I was a kid in the 80's. Back then, AF bands would play boring oldies - stuff from the 60's. Today they played totally cool music from the 80's. What a difference 20 years makes, eh?