Unlike most racers, I don't own a Garmin or any other timing device. This is my personal preference. I like to be able to depend on my body to tell me the pace and whether or not I can go faster on any given day.
You might ask how I know what pace I am doing during a race. First couple of miles are usually about 14:30 to warm up the feet and legs. Next couple of miles would be speeding up to the 14 mph range. I also start looking for someone seems to be pacing at about the same rate. If we are close for a mile or 2, I'll start chatting and casually ask what pace they are doing. One walker on Sunday, had no clue, just like me. The second walker, was paying quite close attention to her time. She was averaging 14 min miles. That was going to be too slow to accomplish my under 3 hr time so I picked up the pace. I cut all the corners, the shortest distance between 2 points is a straight line, dodged slower walkers, shoulders up, chest out, lats and seratis (lower back muscles), tighten the glutes and pushed up the hills, posed for pictures and kept moving.
finish time...... 2:59:33.29. Man that's like my big toe crossed in the 2 hr time and my little toe in 3 hrs.
Not too bad for aiming for under 3 hr finish time without using a Garmin.