I ran a difficult 20 miler on Saturday just in case my post-deadline, mailed-in registration is accepted. Noah ran the first half with me and then I ran the second half on my own towards Center City to meet Leah for coffee. My quads were still sore from Wednesday's 17 miles. So, I held back in the first 12 miles and was okay. That pace turned out to be ~9 minute miles. We ran into Wanderers Susan, who asked if I got in to the Marathon, and Matt, who was already tapering for the marathon and whom I was openly jealous of.
The last 8 miles of the run was like a death march -- long slow death (LSD). From the top of Midvale down the drives should've been my bread and butter -- downhill, smooth, flat. Instead, every step hurt, my strides tightened up, and random body parts (e.g. wing, lower back, forearm) became sore from impact. I fought through it by turning the legs over and drinking at every water fountain. At that point, I was not concerned about pace at all and just wanted the run to be done. To my surprise, I ran ~8 minute miles during this portion of the run. The whole 20 miles took me 2 hours and 50 minutes.
Late Saturday night, I got an email from active.com confirming that I am in the Philly Marathon! I owe a big thank you to Betty Chimichanga for getting me into the race!