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Final half marathon prep

It was a long travel day and there times when, quite frankly, I was just plain cranky.

Times of crankiness often bring good indicators of great friends and my two travel partners and fellow runners, Sue and Herm, not only rolled with my occasional crankiness but made me laugh at the most important times.

One of the true blessings of becoming part of the endurance sport world is the tribe you are able to create -- the people you not only meet but the friends who become like family and carry you through all kinds of things that life throw at you.

The major marathon experience and travel to race can be a bit of an art form. We arrived in Miami, gathered our luggage and made our way to our hotel. Immediately we then went to the expo. This was part of the reason of getting to town early -- not only to get some extra rest and attempt to acclimate to the heat and humidity but to take care of business at the expo. We picked up our race packets with our numbers, timing chips and instructions and then spent time walking around the expo.

The expos associated with major races are both awesome and full of pitfalls.

First, you can spend way too much time walking around the expo, staying on your feet too long too soon before the race. There are deals on gear, gadgets and nutrition which can be good, but also can lure you into spending more money than you planned.

Free samples abound of drinks and bars and cheese (yes, there were two booths with cheese samples, which I found odd for some reason). Samples generally are good, but there is always a danger of not knowing how something might react with your stomach and so you want to nibble through the samples gingerly.

Back at the hotel, the three of us went for a scheduled short, light run and felt the heaviness of the South Florida humidity. Knowledge is power and the humidity can likely have an affect on our performance. Knowing that, and having felt that on Friday, will make it easier to push through the run on Sunday and stay in a good mental place.

A generous serving of pasta topped off our day while we were inspired watching the Millrose Games on ESPN2, amazed by the speed of the indoor track runners.

Another day of rest comes today.

Then we let it all go for 13.1 miles on Sunday, enjoying the warm weather, our health and the friends we share our lives with.

--- Amy Moritz

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