mantra to relax. However, beginning at the second fluid aid station I noticed the pacing leaders dramatically speeding-up afterward for a mile which was both annoying and somewhat worrisome. Ultimately I accepted their approach comforted that if I remained with them through the half that I could then drop away and self-manage a 7:35 pace through my hopeful P.R. finish.
°F - exacted their harsh toll. I was astounded to see just how quickly my apparently inadequate consumption of fluids and electrolytes caused me muscle cramps, a headache, lightheadedness and general weakness - which in combination forced me to a walk.
In retrospect it was fortunate that I yielded to these symptoms. During the subsequent miles walking through the remaining aid stations and slowly jogging between them I drank amply and took some extra Succeed Electrolyte Caps to restore my fluids and electrolyte deficit, and began feeling much better. Upon seeing the 3:30 pacing team pass I sped up in the final mile and ran through the finish line to the loud shouts from the crowd of tens of thousands. Though disappointed with my 3:38 time I was happy to finish healthy and to learn many lessons:
- When the predicted temperature plus dew-point is more than 120°F (Chicago's became 80°F+50°F=130°F) to back-off my target pace by at least 20 seconds per mile per 5°F above that point;
- A recent study found that marathoners slow by 19 seconds per degree over 55°F. As the average temperature was predicted to be 74°F, which translates to a six minute slow down, I should have reset my goal finishing time accordingly;
- Not to allow worries of losing the pacing team to inhibit my:
- Obligation to fully satiate my thirst (in retrospect I should have drunk three versus two cups though most of the aid stations);
- Consuming electrolytes per my prior hydration and fueling plan.