Running in January in Texas you have to be prepared for any type of weather. After a stretch of mild temperatures, a bitter cold front blew in the day before the race. And while near-freezing temperatures at the race start were a bit unpleasant, we dodged a bullet as the 40+ mile per hour winds from Saturday diminished in time for our 13.1 mile trek "Downhill to Downtown".
Going into the race, we both had our sights set on breaking the 2-hour mark. We came close in 2016 but fell seconds short. We both felt pretty good with our goal this time, knowing we are already in very good early season race shape.
We made our way to the start corral and positioned ourselves near the 1:55 group, knowing we would start out in this bunch and try to maintain the pace as we traversed the course. With a record 7,500 entrants this year, the course was definitely crowded. It was a great feel and had a bit of the Houston Marathon vibe as we were always with a big pack of runners.
It took us a little over a mile, but we passed the 1:55 pace group, then settled into a consistent pace. For the most part, the effort was good and our bodies were cooperative in running down the goal.
Caitlin experienced a bit of struggle in miles 9-11, but regrouped for a solid finish. Tiffany felt like she could have given a little more, but didn't want to risk blowing up and missing the PR.
All-in-all, a great start to the new race season. A personal best in the record books and now a new target to shoot for. We're both hoping this result vaults us into continued successes as we continue throughout 2019.