I am going to take my trip to Fargo to run the Fargo Marathon and put it into 2 posts. I will start with a report on the trip, expo, and 5K and then write a report on the actual marathon later. I will tell you that I did run and finished in 4:00:16. Yes, 16 seconds over 4 hours. Like I said, I will write about it in the next post.
Mike and I left on Friday morning to drive from outside Milwaukee all the way to Fargo. It was raining when we left but no problems as we took to the road. After close to 9 hours and a few short stops, we get to Fargo around 3 in the afternoon. After a quick check in to the Red River Lodge, we were off to the Fargo Dome for the Expo and 5K. 5K? I thought you were running a marathon?? Yes, I did run both. They had something called the Go Far Challenge which consisted on a 5K run on Friday evening followed by either the 10K, half marathon, or full marathon on Saturday. 3 medals is always better than 1, even if 1 of those medals is only for a 5K.
We find the Fargo Dome which very well may be the largest building in Fargo. It is a cool looking facility where the North Dakota State University football team plays their home games. Also, many concerts have been held there. The expo is held on the floor of the dome and was larger than I thought it would be. They had quite a few free samples to get and lots of vendors to check out. The Fargo Dome floor also served as the finish to all the races on Saturday including the Marathon. If you look at the small blue sign on the right side of the picture seemingly floating in the blue seat, that is the finish line.
After Mike and I were done with the expo, we get ready for the 5K which started at 6:30. I wanted to run this extremely easy to not tire me at all for the marathon 14 hours later. It seemed like the entire town was there for the 5K as there were 5197 finishers. It was warm and sunny so I tried to stay in the shade as much as I could until 5 minutes before the start. Since I wanted to run very easy, I started a about 50 yards back of the start line. There were still about 4000 people behind me so you would think all the runners ahead of me were actually just that, runners. Nope. The horn sounds to start and not 1 block into the race, there are walkers 4 abreast. Some people have no clue.
I did drink a lot of water during the day so I was well hydrated, a little over hydrated because a little over 1 mile in, I had to stop by a tree next to a gold course. (Sometimes it is good to be a guy). All of a sudden I hear a golf ball hit the street, good thing I heard it hit the street and not a loud scream of pain. I did finish the 5K at the easy pace I wanted to. 27:57.
I found Mike and we quickly headed to the pasta dinner. We needed to hurry because we wanted to see Dean Karnazes speak at the dinner. Dean Karnazes is also know as UntraMarathon Man. He is the guy who ran 50 Marathons in 50 States in 50 Days a few years ago. We got a seat up close and had a very good pasta dinner and watched Dean speak. He was a little late as he had just run the 5K as well. It was a good program he put on and after the dinner, we met him down at the booth he was at for a quick conversation, and signed poster and a picture. We talked a bit about the Kids Marathon I am organizing and he seemed quite interested in it and made a quirky comment. He asked if the kids had to read the 0.2 of a book as well. Hmmm, good question.
Mike and I went back to the hotel and it wasn't long before before the lights were out and the zzzz's were flying.
After the marathon, we had already planned to drive all the way back home. Nothing like being in a car for 9 hours after running a marathon. The trip was smooth and Mike took a good nap as I listened to the Milwaukee Brewers baseball game as we drove through Minnesota. Good thing they were playing the Twins so I could find the game. Surprisingly I wasn't all that sore except for my back which really needs an adjustment. We made sure we stopped along the way to get a picture of the store we saw on the way up. Maybe I am weird (maybe?!?!?!) but I found the We Do Cows dot Com store quite funny. We finally got back to Mike's house just before Midnight and I got home 30 minutes later and was out quickly.
The driving, expo, and dinner portion of the trip went smoothly and well. I will tell you all about the race next.