First, the course:
An instantaneous-pace watch is even less useful due to the course's elevation changes. I may write the following on my arm, so that I can tell whether my pace really is on target: 1) Med, 2) Slow, 3) Slow, 4) Fast, 5) Fast, 6) Slow, 7) Med, 8) Fast, 9) Fast, 10) Fast, 11) Med, 12) Slow, 13) Fast. Maybe that will just mess with my head, though, and maybe I should just keep consistent effort. I can always ignore my arm. It'll be hard to read while moving, anyway.
I don't have a working watch, so I may end up wearing my Garmin. Or, if I find all the pieces to my old watch, I'll tape it together again and hope that it sticks this time. About the watch vs. Garmin decision, it's really only the difference between their two weights that I should be using to... weigh... the benefits of instantaeous pace and distance. We'll see if I can find the rest of my old watch.
The weather forecast is currently 60-76, 60%. Boo heat. I hope it changes.
I found an alternative to the 1:45 pace group, which is a bit too fast for my estimated 1:50 (assuming the heat's decent). I could run with the 3:45 full group. A 3:40 would've been ideal, and far more reasonable, since 3:40 is the womens' 18-34 BQ time. Clearly, this is not a BQ-aspirer's course, if the race coordintors didn't consider this. A 3:40 would've been exactly my 1:50 pace. Oh well, 3:45 isn't too far, and if it's hot, it may end up being just right. When the halfers split off, I can speed up for the last mile and a half, anyway. So, 3:45 for now. If I can't find them, I can switch to the 1:45. But considering the super low number of fullers, that probably won't be a problem.
And now, previous runners' reviews:
There were a few things I picked up from reaing CMM/CMHM reviews at MarathinGuide.com, a cool website.
1) It's a halfer's race, with 30K:4K halfers to fullers. All the crowd support and music is in the first half, so I'm glad I didn't sign up for the full. It would've been a tough one to finish, and perhaps a bit disappointing, too.
2) Corrals are unfortunately not strictly enforced. I hope this changes this year. I heard that lots of walkers pretty much inserted themselves wherever, clogging everything up. People would also run 4-5-wide, making getting around them difficult. Boo. That would be frustrating. Respect the corrals!
3) It was hot (60's at race start, 80's by race end!!!) last year. I hope it's not as bad this year. They gave out sponges and had misting stations to help runners cool down. I hope it doesn't come to that.
4) The course is hilly. I didn't think it'd be that bad, based on the elevation chart, but I don't read elevation charts often. I hope that my training has prepped me for hills. I usually don't notice hills anyway, so I think I should be fine.
5) Other: a smaller but efficient expo, meager post-race food, good city, bring TP, great crowd support, bad goody bag, super crowded, plentiful water/Cyto, crowded finish.