Today was the big day for me in running not only my first marathon but my longest race over 5.6 miles. I was fortunate enough to have Adrian help me in my journey.
I am not sure who did this Picture but it sums it up for me
My goal was under 5 hours
It was a rainy day and the wind was up a little too.
The forecast was wrong. It was 100% chance!
Getting to the starting corrals about 6:40 A.M. then waiting in the rain. Thank goodness I brought along a cheap Wal-Mart poncho to wear as it was dumping and the wind was pretty gusty. I heard the start of the race and then the waiting began while they started each group in waves. It seemed like forever but it took about 15 minutes to get my group to the start line. I worked my way to the side that I knew my parents were on and they were able to get a quick picture of me running by.
About 30 seconds into the run. Right after I took off the poncho
I can not put into words the feelings I had while running but it covered so many spectrum's. I never felt like I could not complete it and overall I really felt good the whole time. I got to talk to several people and hear so many stories of why they were running. The oddest thing to me was running for a short time near a girl who did it bare foot. It was so wet and nasty I can not imagine. For anyone considering it I say go for it, you won't regret any of it when you cross the finish line and people are cheering for you. People you most likely will never meet in your life.
There were several points in the race that were moral killers. and so many more that were amazing. First was the porta potties. I was lucky enough not to need them during the first 6 or so miles. The lines were unbelievable. I waited until about mile 6 and was able to get in and out very quickly. Shortly after that the wave of A group, fast, runners started coming back towards me. This continued until I turned around at about mile 9. Coming back there were people the whole way until I turned again. This is the point where the half and full marathons split up. There were still people as far as I could see coming up the streets. I was still pumped up at this point and feeling good.
About mile 16 is the first time I gasped, along with everyone around me. There was the dreaded bridge everyone has told me about. At this point though the bridge was not much because starring up the road as far as you could see was all hill. About a mile or so uphill just to get to the bridge. "I think I can, I think I can". OK that's not what I said but I kept telling myself "Slow and Steady" over and over and then there I was on the bridge. I did not walk I ran the whole way up and over that bridge. I did do a 30 second walk after the top more to gauge the downhill run than anything. Downhill hurts my knees and I did not want that issue. I started to run again and I got a light cramp in my left calf. After going down and getting flat again it felt a little better.
Then it happened again as we rounded the next corner. No less than 300 yards from the bottom of the hill after the bridge we were going uphill. That was moral killer number two. The good news is it did not last too long and people were really lifting my spirits by yelling my name and saying things like "your almost done", "its all downhill from here (they lied but it helped!)", and "you are doing great keep going". Mile 23 was the turning point for moral. Nothing like being handed a couple ounces of beer to give you a lift. Mile 24-26 seemed like a blur as I think I was digging so hard to keep my legs moving. At mile 26 things really picked up and I knew I was close. I was looking all over for my family and then I saw them. I was pumped up at this point. The end was near and new adrenaline flooded through me.
Just a few hundred yards to go and there they were. I ran
over and gave my dad a high five. He was the only one that
could reach over the fence!
Click on the
The End Result
I AM A MARATHON FINISHER!!!
On my son's Birthday even
I just love this shirt! Happy Birthday Ashtyn
Post Race at the Hotel. I had just finished the Muscle Milk
when my wife handed me a Black Butte Porter
isn't she the best!
The split times: had issue shutting it off it was so wet.
Timing and Elevations.
The official timing website is down but my garmin, which died within 5 minutes of crossing the line said 4:55:09.23 and a grand total of 26.45 miles. My knees were a little stiff and my left calf was a little sore after we sat down and had lunch but I am on cloud 9.
The day after the race I chased my son around the Mall in Portland and then walked 2 different times. Today I am ready to run even though I am not supposed to. Again I want to thank you Adrian for preparing me to run this race and helping ensure that I did not suffer too much after it. I have read so many people that said they still have a hard time walking today. I feel great and even though my wife would kick my butt I am ready to do it again . I promised you I would not anytime soon though as it took a lot of time. We are looking to 3 or 4 years and doing the Disney marathon and family vacation! I can't wait
Reflecting back a few things hit me:
1) I must have heard my name called out 200 times and it really does lift you when your head is down and you are getting tired. I know that the energy of the crowd helped me finish it standing upright. Thanks to any and all the volunteers and spectators. A special thanks to whomever was handing out the beer at mile 23. Talk about a lifting of spirits.
2) I don't believe I really ever hit a wall. Not that I would really know what it was but I never felt that I was out of energy or could not make it any further.
3) My nutrition and hydration plan were flawless thus helping me from the wall I think. I am so glad I carried my own nutrition. It could have been ugly without it.
4) My mind is in much better shape than my legs are. My mind says run but my legs are telling me to recover a few more days.
STARTING LINE VIDEO OF THE MARATHON
My plan for 2011
run/walk the Pear Blossom run with my 3 year old son
Tough as Nails trail run
SOB 15K trail run
I want to run the 50K SOB mountain run.