Chicago Marathon 2007
Well, I'm sure the whole world has heard about the Chicago Marathon "cancellation" at this point, and I'm kind of tired of talking about it, so I will keep this short. In a nutshell, Mother Nature didn't cooperate; it was something like 94 degrees with a heat index of 109. I never felt good running, not even from the start. Too many damn people there, and too many people walking from the beginning. I felt tense, as instead of focusing on my running I had to focus on navigating around lots and lots of people walking.
But I carried on at a 4:30 pace in the brutal heat. When I got to mile 22, I heard the first announcement that the marathon was being canceled due to the heat. I couldn't believe it as I had only a little more than four miles to go. I yelled something like "That's crap!" and kept going. By mile 24 the police were out in full force yelling at us to stop running, that it was too dangerous, that the clocks were turned off and there was no point in insisting on running to the finish. Well, hearing that my time would not be recorded was enough to make me stop running. We were instructed to walk to the finish line. In the last half mile or so, I began to run again, and upon arriving at the finish in 4:59, I was truly pissed to see the clocks still running and the marathon staff and volunteers carrying on as if nothing had happened. "Congratulations...here's your medal...etc"
In one sense, I feel as if I didn't complete the Chicago Marathon. But in hearing so many stories from other runners who were not allowed to cross the finish line, I feel good that I did run a good 24 miles in a brutal 109 heat index. I feel I did earn my medal. So I had a goal of running a 4:10 marathon, so what. I am lucky to have finished at all.