Back to the race... at mile 10 she started to fade and I stuck with her. I kept the promise I made before we started, to run together all 13.1 miles. I helped push her through mile 10 as our pace dipped to just over 10 minute mile pace, but at mile 11 the pace got much slower. Determined to be a woman of my word, I made sure to stay with her and help push her through. At this point it starts to rain, but I am feeling great - fully prepared after having practiced my race day strategies the week before with a 15 miler in the rain. I was ready to catch my second wind and dig deep for the last two miles. There was something about seeing mile 11 that made me so excited. Only two miles to go... but my running buddy couldn't hang. So we ran together through the finish line at 2hrs 10 minutes and 2hrs 11 minutes, respectively.
In one sense, I am glad that I kept my word; but as a runner, I feel like I did myself a disservice. I feel like I should have followed my insticts and kicked up my pace at mile 10 and especially at mile 11 when my body was ready to sprint towards the finish line. I know I did the right thing, but I can't help but feel like this time, maybe I shouldn't have...
My favorite quote I heard after the race. [Man on the street talking to a runner on his way to his car]: "Did you win?" [Runner/Finisher]: "We all won."
Indeed, Sir. Indeed.