Friday, December 8, 2017

CIM USATF National Championships Panel & Expo

After flights to California that went nearly seamlessly (a rarity in my pre-race travel!), we arrived in Sacramento on Friday early afternoon, with time for a shake-out run followed by a late lunch before checking into our hotel and getting groceries.  I ran while we were waiting on our food order to arrive (multi-tasking at its finest!), and I was itching for my running fix so badly that I felt like an addict when frantically changing into my running clothing in the restaurant bathroom.  That's how you know you're tapered!  I was very blessed to have my parents and husband accompany me on the trip, and to have my sweet mother-in-law stay in Missouri with my daughter.
So thankful for the support of these two, in this
race & throughout my entire 37 years
This was our row on our flight from Denver to Sacramento!
I started Saturday with another short shake out run with strides, and then we drove the marathon course.  I tried to elevate my legs while we were doing so, but my husband said I was going to kill us all with my feet in the windshield, so it was short-lived.  There were signs about the race all along the route, which were fun to see.  Driving the course intimidated me a bit because it was noticeably rolling terrain.  The course has a net downhill of around 340 feet, and I knew it rolled much of the way, but driving it make it a bit scarier (spoiler:  post-race I realized why this course is often called "fast, but not easy", which never made any sense to me before I ran it).
Trying to get my legs up while navigating
Route signs
After driving the course (which took forever - also not confidence inspiring!), we made our way to the race expo and to watch the USATF National Championship Top 10 Bib Reveal.  Sara Hall is one of my favorite professional runners, so seeing her ranked #1 and being within 10 feet of her when walking to our seats was amazing!  I follow many of the top 10 women athletes on social media and blogging platforms, and they are so inspiring (another spoiler:  I beat #9 in the race).  My dad took this video of the bib reveal.  I admittedly enjoyed seeing the women more than the men, but the men had very impressive resumes as well.  After the bib reveal the top 3 men and top 3 women participated in a panel discussion.

USATF National Marathon Championships Top 10 Seeded Women
USATF National Marathon Championships Top 10 Seeded Men
Top 3 men & women panel
Then it was onto the rest of the expo!  I got to pick up my seeded bib number from a "special running group" table, which was exciting.  We toured the entire expo, scored some free goods, and took a lot of pictures.  The expo always heightens pre-marathon excitement, and I was inspired and ready!  I also met up with a few friends at the expo, Roger and Jamie.  Everyone was geared up to run fast and our race day forecast was looking perfect!

Special Running Group pick-up
Great photo-op prop
With Jamie by another great photo-op prop
I was crossing my fingers it really was the
fastest course in the west!


  1. Ty doesn’t like me elevating my legs on the dash either! This was a fun post! It looks like an awesome expo!

    1. Why don't they understand the importance of this? Haha! I loved seeing the elite women!