Monday, September 27, 2010
Completely unworthy marathon post
Marathon #4 is done. I can't figure out how I managed to run a 3:44:00 and qualify for Boston. Seriously! Let me list some factors that may have helped:
1. My Garmin watch. My watch has a footpod that tracks my distance/pace. It's AWESOME but not 100% accurate. I thought that I had set it up so that it was pretty close, but, come to find out.... I had not. So during all my training runs when I thought I had run a certain distance at a certain pace, I had actually run a further distance at a faster pace! Therefore, I was faster in training that I thought. When I finished the race yesterday my watch thought I had only run 25.43 miles. That's "only" about a mile off... but, it's no wonder I didn't think I would qualify for Boston. I wouldn't have if my watch was telling the truth!
2. My husband. This is the first marathon I've run where I've had a support crew along the way. Granted, the race organizers had water and Gatorade stations every few miles, but there were no gels or gus or other forms of caloric intake. Scott was SOOOOO amazing. He had both the boys. Tommy was grouchy, as usual, about being dragged through Mom's race. Elliott was his chirpy self. Thankfully he had the laptop and a couple of movies for the kids. BUT, that's a lot of driving very slowly for a couple of miles and then stopping to wait for me to catch up. He was there at least 10 times in the race. He always had a bottle of Gu Brew out and at different intervals I ate Gu Gummies, regular Gu and, at about mile 22, a DELICIOUS banana. (I didn't even know I wanted it until I saw it!) I could never have made it through without the extra calories/energy... Let alone his encouraging words. Who knew that "you can do it" and "I believe in you" and "I love you" would be so powerful?
3. The course. It had glorious downhills, particularly in the first half. There were some hills that went up, of course, but they weren't daunting. My half marathon time, in fact, was only about 1 minute slower than my 1/2 marathon PR! Crazy. The second half was a lot harder... but mostly because I was getting pooped. Mile 22 had this horrific, but thankfully short, hill that I had to speed walk up. I realized that to run a marathon you need to check in with yourself and make sure you feel like "I could do this all day" for the first 20 miles. After that it's gonna suck no matter what, but at least you got through 20 feeling good!
4. Music. I had a good mix on my iPod but the BEST moment was right when I hit mile 26. (That final 2-tenths is just ENDLESS, isn't it!?) The theme from Indiana Jones started. How perfect!? I had a really nice kick and passed a couple of people along the way. In truth, there was another woman very close to the finish that I could have blown by but I decided it was not necessary, since I could see that Boston was in hand. (Of course, I didn't realize she was in my age group and I could have been #9 instead of #10 for women under 40... but, oh well!)