The rain arrived early Saturday evening, the night before the race, and was quite heavy at times. I’d stayed downtown to avoid a very early morning drive from my home. During the evening, I stole glances out the window at the traffic passing by my room, water splashing everywhere as the cars and trucks passed through ever growing puddles of water. During the night, I peeked out again and was happy to see the rain had stopped — although a pronounced drizzle had returned by the time I made my way over to West Potomac Park and the start line of the race.
The crowd of racers grew steadily, with most of us seeking a bit of shelter under tents or trees and chatting while we waited for the start. Despite the dampness, the weather was actually pleasant enough for a run. Temperatures at the gun were in the mid-50’s and didn’t budge for most of the day. The wind was calm, leaving the wide Potomac calm and flat as a sheet of glass as we headed out toward the tip of Haines Point. You could easily hear the aircraft taking off from National, across the river, although the airport was hard to make out in the mist and the planes themselves were quickly lost from sight. The mist seemed to dampen the sound of the runners as they made their way around the course.
As for myself, sporadic training efforts and a deepening twinge in a calf muscle from the halfway point led to a relatively poor showing — finished in 1:06:40 for a pace of 10:45. Not my best, so time to rest for a few days, regroup mentally and physically, and start training for the next race.