The weather is looking perfect for Sunday: 50F at the start (my wave starts at 6:02am
I realized I signed up for wave 5 (faster than 4:15) rather than wave 4 (faster than 4:00).
I think I made the right choice w.r.t crowding on the course (mostly the GG bridge) but I'm afraid the pace groups for a 4:00 will all be in wave 4. (Which is stupid, really.) I'll find out at the expo on Saturday.
So, I'll probably not have a pacer....oh well....I'll just do it myself, as per usual. I'm not very good at keeping to the course tangents and what with GPS noise etc, I'll probably hold a 9:00 pace by my watch to hit a 9:09 pace in reality. (I've been doing this in training for just this reason).
It was a rude shock on my first marathon to see that my watch was fibbing.... ..but then I thought about it and realized that the there is not just GPS error, but a larger source of error is the back and forth of yours truly. Dodging other runners as well as not following the shortest line (i.e. not running diagonally across the road into the curves like a race car) means you end up running another .1 to .25 miles....and that means a few minutes more running. Like a 4:01 rather than a 3:59...
You may think "meh..that's not much" but I'm trying to shave 15 minutes off my PR with a bunch of training...if I can be better at this it's worth the (mental) effort.
This race I'll have a pace band....during the race I'll check my time against known (supposedly) accurate mile markers and that will tell me my real pace. Then I'll use that information to calibrate how much faster I need to show on the GPS to hold that.
This is why a running with a pacer would have been sweet. You just stick to 'em like ducklings following mom and they bring you home.