Leading up to the race I tried to stay calm and not stress too much. I wanted this race so bad but I had to wait and see how I felt Race morning. The buses were an hour late, but smooth sailing after that at the top. I lined up right behind the 3:25 pacers, and then it’s like a light bulb went off and said, “you can have the best marathon race of you life today if you want it! Right now” the start sounded and we were off!! There was a lot of weaving around people the first mile, then I found my rhythm. My 5k split was 24:00 - 7:43 pace. Perfect. St George is a fantastic marathon course (hence why I have ran it 8 times) but there are hills. It’s a very honest marathon course in my opinion. Through the 10k mark, 46:52 - 7:32 pace. Right where I wanted. Mile 6.5 I had a caffeinated @guenergylabs followed by a salt pill and water. Coach Ash @ahappypacetold me to take the hills slow so I did just that. Mile 8 at Veyo is 1+ mile climbing. My pace was an 8:45. perfect. I drank water at every aid station. Then back up another incline from 10-12. That part is always hard for me but not this year. The big climbing comes the first half of this race. Half way mark, 13.1 pace - 7:55 - 1:44:53. Right where I wanted to be for a marathon! I ate 2 @clifbar shot blocks, salt pill, ibuprofen and water. I wanted to run the first half smart and then if I still felt awesome to go for it on the back half. I have worked too hard this year and for many years to come up short today. “I am not throwing away my shot!” 🎶 I finally started REALLY believing in myself at mile 13! Miles 13-18 felt good. 7:35 average. At mile 18 we hit another incline at the Ledges and hoped not to hit “the wall”. I felt good! No wall today! “Race smart today” I reminded myself. 30k pace 7:51 - 2:26:18. Miles 20-23 are rollers. Up and down strong and a 5k left to kick it home! I kept checking my watch, yes! This was going to happen today! The last turn down the home stretch, I could see the finish! I almost threw up. Effort was there. Last kick and done ✅! 3:29:51! I couldn’t believe it! Elation, tears, joy! I cried, I smiled, I felt like I was going to throw up again. I sat on the floor for a minute right by the finish. A volunteer helped me up. I was ok, I had just pushed hard and ran a 3:29 marathon! My body felt pretty good despite how hard I ran, thank you ironman training! Stomach was queasy but I was able to not loose it. I was thrilled! Tears again down my sweaty happy face. I finally had the perfect race! I didn’t hit the wall, I hit the paces I wanted to, I had my nutrition right, and I got the goal time I wanted. It was the perfect marathon race for me. The one I had waited for for so long. And it made it that much sweeter. I got my sub 3:30, I qualified for my dream of running Boston with a big 10+ min buffer, ran an 8 min PR from last year and had the race of my dreams to finish off an amazing year of PRs. Glad to add a 26.2 (or 26.34 😂) PR to that list! Never give up on your goals and dreams! Boston 2019 here I come!