January in central Texas is typically very mild, with daily averages in the 50s and morning averages in the 40s. I am definitely a cold weather runner, and was hoping for cool, dry weather in the mid 40s. Sadly, as the weekend approached, the temperatures spiked. Race morning came and the overnight low was 65 degrees F. When the race started it was barely still in the 60s, and the humidity was a whopping 96%! While the humidity dropped throughout the day (down to 70%), the temperature climbed, and it was over 75 F when I finished. Unfortunately, those temperatures and humidity were not ideal for me, and my legs felt exhausted very early in the race, resulting in far more walk breaks than I would like to acknowledge. This really slowed me down, as did some killer hills between miles 10 and 16, and again between 20 and 24. I even thought about quitting, but I'm glad I didn't because that would have been rather demoralizing. Despite a disappointing finishing time, I was 43rd overall, 9th woman and 2nd in my age group. That would be one of the benefits of doing a small race.
In conclusion, I finished my 5th marathon. It was a personal worst in 4:10:58, but I tackled a new course, and ran in fairly challenging conditions. In my previous 4 marathons, I think I was lucky to have near perfect weather, but that can't always be the case, and this time my luck ran out. Ironically enough, two days later, the weather dropped below freezing in central Texas. I'm hoping weather won't be a factor in my next race, but it isn't something I can control.