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Runners wholesale halloween costumes sweat it out at HOA Marathon

18.Nov.17, 11:26; Icon 349; Date 0; Attitude +0 | 0 | -0

While many were enjoying their Labor Day wholesale halloween costumes www.wholesale-halloweencostumes.com comfortably doing nothing, 153 people arose before sunrise, gathered for a 6 a.m. start and ran 26.2 miles through the Mid-Missouri heat and humidity.

Columbia's Dan Edidin almost Halloween Costumes Outlet www.bnsds.com passed out as he crossed the finish line, taking third overall and first place in the 45-49 age group at the Heart of America Marathon on Monday.

'The fastest old guy,' Edidin said with a laugh. 'It's a bit of a death march at the end, but I just try to keep running.'

Sarcasm was one way yuyiyrtyretr to approach the grueling run. In its 57th year, the Heart of America is one of the country's most difficult marathon courses that isn't contested in high altitude. Rather, its runners face thick humidity.

'It is the Heart of America,' Columbia Track Club President Beth Luebbering said. 'You kind of expect it to be this hot.'

The course starts on Stadium Boulevard and runs down Providence to Route K then out on Old Plank Road to the Katy Trail. It then runs through Easley and Rock Bridge State Park, returning to Providence and finishing at the intersection of Broadway and Seventh Street.

Running in his first marathon, former MU cross country runner Hayden Legg, 25, won with a time of 2 hours, 46 minutes, 42 seconds. Columbia's Grace Chiles was the women's winner with a time of 3:46:58.

After crossing the finish line, Legg sprawled out on the pavement in exhaustion before escaping to recover indoors. Others took a dip in the ice bath after finishing. Some even drank beer in the chill-out tent.

'It's a really tough course with a lot of rough hills,' Luebbering said. 'But one thing we're trying to do is keep everybody hydrated out there with the race stations. We have a lot of good volunteers keeping the runners hydrated with water.'

There's an inherent challenge and reverence for the Heart of America that attracts marathon runners. This year's race had entrants from as far away as Alaska and England.

'It's a race we take pride in,' Luebbering said. 'It's become a Columbia Track Club tradition every Labor Day. It's become our thing.'

Running his third Heart of America, Curtis Turner of Kingwood, Texas, took second overall and first in the 30-34 age group with a time of 3:06:02.

'This is a great run,' Turner said. 'I always look forward to it.

'You know you're going to finish. If you have to stop and walk, do it, if you have to recover. But you know that finish line is not getting any closer, so mentally, it's better to bust ass and get through it.'

For Turner and Edidin, the morning of the marathon starts as simply as possible.

'I wake up an hour before I have to run,' Turner said. 'Eat a banana and hit the coffee. You just try to exert the least amount of energy possible because you're going to need all of it out there.'

For Edidin, it's the same as any running day ' almost.

'I don't do anything different, try to be mellow,' he said. 'But I can get to chatting with people at the beginning, because you're feeling pretty good and you don't think about it. And all your friends are out there, and you'll say, 'Hey, how's it going?'

'But then you gotta put your nose to the grindstone, because when you get to Mile 20, it hits you.'

That combination of physical challenge and community has made the Heart of America a Labor Day tradition in Columbia.

'I love this marathon,' Edidin said. 'Aside from the hills and the humidity, it's really nice to run. It's the home race.'

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