Tuesday, September 19, 2006
I looked over at the clock Sunday morning and it said 3:50... guess its time to get up and get ready. I heard my father-in-law (Ron) milling around and figured I better go downstairs and start the coffee. We had put our gear together and filled up the water bottles with various sports drinks the night before. We ate some breakfast, drank some coffee and headed out the door at 5.
The drive to the course was about 40 minutes. We parked, hit the restrooms and stretched out. My wife (Micaela) came along with a cooler of snacks and extra sports drinks for the both of us. Since the course was an odd shape, we actually ran past the finish line 3 before we crossed the finish line. Micaela set up camp near the Start/Finish for some pics and to hand out round 2 of the drinks.
It was the start of the Endurance50 and a good crowd was over by the NorthFace tent getting books signed and talking to Dean Karnazes. I decided to wait until the end to do that. We met up with my cousin Jennifer who was running her first 1/2 marathon and headed to the start line My friend Howard, his wife and some of their friends were running the 1/2 also. I had not been able to get a hold of him to meet up and just by chance we lined up about 8 feet from each other. We talked for a bit and decided to run together for a while. He's faster then me in the marathon distance, but he's coming off an injury, so he was easing back in with the half.
The gun sounded at 7:00 and we were off. Howard and I ran together for a while then I separated from his group and ran my own race. The sun was coming out, there were no clouds in the sky and no shade to see for a while. It was heating up fast. My goal was to maintain a 10:00 min/mile pace. I was wearing my Polar 625x so I was able to keep a watch on my pace and my HR.
The course was an odd shape. It was a 12 mile out and back from the Start/Finish then a loop out past the Start/Finish then repeat for the marathon. I knew what I was getting into, it was just funny running by the finish line so many time and not getting to stop. I was charging alongand ran my 1/2 in a little under 2:05 and was feeling good. My ITband was holding well. I spotted Micaela and she helped me swap out water bottles and I was off for round 2. I met up with some runners from the local running club (BiPod) of the town I just moved to. I ran with them for a while and got some great words of encouragement then let then go as they were using the run as training and were only looking to go another 4 miles before they called it a day.
The sun was really beating down and the pounding was getting to me. I kept telling myself, "get to mile 20.." I don?t know why that was what I was after, but that's what was getting me through. I got to 20 and was still going so I pushed on. I first walked at the water stops at mile 21. I had a hard time getting going again, but was able to. I pushed on and walked through the water stops for the next 2 miles.
Then I hit the wall a little after mile marker 24. I was really having a hard time. My legs were killing me. I walked with another gentleman for about .2 of a mile and discussed the event with each other. I told him this was my first marathon and he said "Just finish, that's all this is about" I agreed, but I have a hard time with that. I wanted to average 10 minute miles and it was slipping away, but he was right. I was not there to do anything more than finish. We walked for a little longer, then he took off. I walked a few more steps then picked up the pace too. I was so close, no more walking.
The area I was in was shaded and on a crushed lime stone trail, so it was cool and softer then the road to run in. I knew there was a big hill coming up at the end of mile 24 so I mentally prepared myself and charged up it. This hill was hard, but nothing compared to the ones at McNaughton, so I kept that in my head and went for it. I passed mile marker 25 as the ground started to level out. I was so close. The rest of the race was literally down hill with the exception on one small incline. I got through it an approached the parking lot where the chute started. I was almost done. Def Leopard's "Pour Some Sugar on Me" was blaring out of the speakers as I ran by. I was thinking "pour some water on me would be way better." I crossed in 4:22.15.. 10 minute miles on the nose. *The clock in the picture below is total running time, not chip time.
This was rough. I had trained hard for my international distance triathlon all summer, but it was more concentration on all 3 events as opposed to running exclusively. My body was feeling it, but I was finished. I grabbed some water. Thanked Micaela for her help and then made my way toward the Endurance50 bus. I staggered around for bit then saw Dean come out. I did not have my book or a pen or even a camera, but I just wanted to introduce myself and say hello. Just then my cousin Jennifer came over to talk and snapped a picture of Dean an I.
Now we had to wait for Ron to finish and it was really starting to cloud up. We saw him at the mile 24 marker walking. He said he was going to have to walk because his knees were killing him. I cheered him on and said "give it what you got left" he gave me a nod and kept going. Not long after he rounded the corner, it started pouring!! It was coming down in buckets. How miserable it must have felt to be that tired and sore and getting just drenched, but he continued on. The aid staff recommended that everyone go inside due to the lightning. We did and tried to guess when he would get done. We got in the car and drove as close to the finish line as possible until we saw him down the road. He was running again and on the home stretch. He crossed the finish line in 5:52 on his 55th birthday. Happy Birthday Ron!!
We all talked for a minute and he wanted to get his bib signed by Dean so we headed over to the bus. The whole event had basically shut down after the rain, but he was determined to meet Dean. One of the guys from the bus let him on and when they all heard he had just finished in the downpour, the whole bus started cheering and clapping for him. He got his bib and my book signed and we headed home for some watch some football and relax.
It was a great race. The course route was a little crazy, but the staff was great. It was really awesome to meet Dean. He was a super nice guy and I wish him the best as the Endurance50 continues.
-Keep Moving Forward
Saturday, September 16, 2006
50 marathons in 50 states in 50 days has been done by Sam Thompson already, so to think that 2 people would want to do this is crazy (or highly motivated depending on your point of view). Sam ran for Katrina awareness and Dean Karnazes is running for Karno's Kids, a charity to encourage youth to get outside and be active. Both are good causes so I'm not going to pit one against the other or anything like that. I just think its great that people are using fittnes as a way to bring attention to good causes. I know there is a lot of negativity around Dean out there in the Ultrarunning community(I am a fan though) and Im not writing any of this to convience anyone one way or another. I'm just glad that ultrarunners are using their skills to get the word out about something positive. Huge credit goes to Sam and his crew for completing the task and good luck to Dean and his crew as your journey begins!!!!
Since the Endurance 50 kicks off right down the road from my house, I decided to get in on it. I am running in the Lewis & Clark marathon. This will be my first marathon and 2nd longest run next to McNaughton. I have not really been training out-right for a marathon, but I trained pretty hard all summer for my international distance trialthon and ran a 20 miler as a measuring stick last weekend so I should be good. My Itband has been a bit of an issue, but I'm not out there to set records, just to finish and use this as a long workout for my ultra training. It's going to hurt, no doubt, but that's what it's all about!!
My father-in-law is running too. This is his first marathon and a warm-up for Chicago in October. I'll get some pictures pre and post race and maybe my wife can snap one of me and my father-in-law during the race. I won't be moving too fast so she should be able to get it done. :)
-Keep Moving Forward!
Thursday, September 14, 2006
This is pretty awesome!! I was on Windows Local and noticed that now you can map out custom routes. This is really great because now you and your friends can share locations of running trails that are not on the map. Check out the link to the School House Trail below. I mapped that one out yesterday.
Saturday, September 09, 2006
Here's a collection of pics from the race.
10 minutes before my wave starts
That's me in the pink cap.. had a rough start Im back on track here.
Staying Aero. Averaged close to 21 mph for the bike leg.
averaged 7:32 minutes/mile
Big Finish!! 2:48:04
Post race photo with some friends. From the left Bob, Tim, me, Dan
Bob and Tim did the sprint distance, Dan and I were in the International.
Tuesday, September 05, 2006
I finally found an off road trail 'close' to my place. There are plenty of paved ones all over the place, but I could not seem to find anything made of dirt.
My cousin and I were out for a 20 miler the other day and saw a trail coming off of the one we were on. I said 'great now I know where to go to get in some trail work.' Problem was this was my first long run in a while and I quickly lost track of where exactly it was and just focused one finishing.
So today I decided to go hit the dirt trail thinking it was not that far to run to. I started on my way at a decent pace thinking I would come up on it sooner or later, well later was the answer. I put in 5 and had just found it and I had dinner plans for my birthday, but the whole reason I came out was to run the trail. I called my wife and she said to hit the trail and she would come pick up at one at one of the parking areas close to the trail (she's the best). Long story short, I got in a longer run then expected and some trail work. Let the ultra training begin!!!
*note: Im not mad in that picture, I took it with my camera phone. I felt kind of goofey smiling for the camera in the middle of the woods by myslef :)