I cannot believe that my race was almost 1 week ago and I am just now sharing my experience. This past week has been a little odd...I am experiencing some serious Post Marathon Funk. I can only compare the feeling to that of taking down the Christmas decorations or something along those lines. I think I am just in that period of limbo...asking myself "What Now?"
But I need to move forward, begin training and find a way to make these feelings go far far away...I have way to much to focus on to muster these bizarre feelings. So moving forward.
I will probably take a few posts sharing my experience of January 30th...But to start off I will share that I did finish the marathon in 4:20:21. With that said I am very happy I finished but in the same breath I put a ton of pressure on myself and so I was really hoping to finish in a time right around 4 hours.
I did go out rather fast for myself and felt very very good. I ran the first 13.1 in 2:02. I would never have gone out that fast if I knew that at about mile 16 my legs were going to completely fail me. BUT during those frost 14 miles or so I really felt strong and not at all like I was pushing too hard. The 1/2 marathon was BEAUTIFUL and I would suggest that everyone run it is you have the opportunity. It is very flat aside from a bridge right at the get go...but besides that it is a very fun, entertaining and friendly course. Lots of music, people and fun things to look at...along with just the right amount of runners 19,000 I think. There were also 22 aid stations all with water and Gatorade...many with Gu's, bananas, and pretzels. So, like I said the 1/2 was awesome and I would do it again in a heartbeat....definitely a race for a PR!
The 2nd half of the race was H-A-R-D. (in addition to frustrating!) I kept asking myself "what the Heck is going on? You have run 21 miles and didn't feel this bad!" My legs literally killed. My quads felt like they were ripping off my body. Each step I took, my legs felt tighter and tighter and nothing was helping. I did stop a few times beginning at mile 21ish and would stretch, but in my mind I was not sure if the stopping was actually making me more sore from my body stiffening up. Luckily the 2nd half of the race was pretty much all shaded. The temperatures quickly jumped from a dark start at 6:40am of 60 degrees to about 80 with sun and no wind at about 10am. It was a beautiful 2nd half run, winding through the BEAUTIFUL neighborhoods of Coconut Grove and finishing up with a loop close to University of Miami and then the water way out to Key Biscayne. Right past mile 23.5 I was passed by the 4:15 pacer and I tried so hard to stay with her, but I did not have it in me. (I did stick with the 4 hour pacer when she passed me from mile 7 until about 13.5 when my legs started to bother me.)
So, the finish was amazing. Tons of people and somehow I managed to get that last burst of energy for the last .5 or so. I was even stopped by the lady I had been playing leap frog with the whole time and was told how great I finished.
So, that is the race....a very very outlined version. I want to write more and I will probably go back all week and share more and fill in some gaps but with that said I am ready to move forward. I have a goal for San Diego of a 4 hour marathon and I believe I can do it. I have A LOT to work on and A LOT to learn before then...but I do have exactly 17 weeks from tomorrow until race day.
In the meantime I am going to
--work on building my base
--try and incorporate speed work (there is a free track workout every Tuesday night right down the road)
--TRY TRY TRY to watch what I eat and hopefully loose 15-20lbs...it will be hard
--drop my 5k time to the 21's and my 10k time to sub 50min.
So, that is it. I have been reading others blogs and I am finally after writing this feeling better and ready to move forward with a positive attitude about the experience and continue to learn from all the wonderful blogs I read.