Monday, December 29, 2014

Why I am not happy with a 38 minute Marathon PR

Shouldn't everyone be happy with a 38 minute and 50 second PR for the Marathon?

My friend asked me right after the race if I was still happy about the race and the answer is “NO”.  

It has been just over two weeks since the Best Damn Race Marathon where my time goal was to go sub 5.  If you read my last post you can see I did not reach it and I am very upset about it.  You can read it here.

Giving myself time to think about it I am starting to get over/deal with it.  I am setting new goals to reach and getting ready to train for them.  I am also taking it easy giving my body the appropriate time to recover.  I am still not happy about it nor do I know if I will ever be happy about the outcome of the race.  I am disappointed in myself.

Gifts from my wonderful support!
I wish I knew why I am so upset with missing my goal.  Maybe its the fact I missed it by just over the and a half minutes.  Maybe I feel I could have pushed harder at the end and not given up.  It could also be the fact that I trained for a specific goal and did everything I could have done to reach it and I fell short.  Maybe I am comparing myself to my friends I trained with and expected to do what they did?

I also think this was the first time I trained for a specific goal and did NOT hit the goal.  When I was reflecting on this I couldn’t believe that was true.  Maybe I set my goals too low but I often surprise myself because race day can be so tricky, especially for 26.2 miles.    

When I made my last goals this is how I came up:
Wanted a sub 30 5k- and came out with 29:03
2:15 half and came in at 2:12  *This race was a month earlier than anticipated*
Olympic distance and first triathlon 3:45-4:00 and came in at 3:38 and surpassed my run goal!
15k -I wanted under 1:45 and was surprised to see 1:35:11 at the gate River Run with the bridges!  This was actually a week before my half marathon PR!  

I do see that 38 minutes faster is fabulous and I am thankful for that! Last years marathon was 5:55 when I did the NYC Marathon.  I am so thankful for everyone who put up with me this training cycle.  I am ready to set new goals and reach those in time :)

I also think it is OK to not be OK with a race result..What do you think?

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Best Damn Race, Cape Coral Recap

Sitting down to write this recap I am a big bag of emotions.

As I posted the other day, my goals are here:

Sunday I completed my 4th marathon.  Behn and I ran this race together.  It was wonderful :)  I seriously had no idea how it was going to go.  I may have gone off on him before during a long run!  I am so happy we were able to do it together.  He was there for me when I needed him the most!

I ran a 5:03:32

It was a PR of about 38:50 but no, I am not happy about that.  I will blog about that later.

Race Day:

My alarm went off at 5:10 and we were up and getting ready!  We both slept really well.  I Vaselined and glided up, we ate our bananas, packed our bags and we were out of the hotel by 5:45 and on our way to our MARATHON!

Once we arrived we had no problems parking, we walked around a bit, went to the bathroom, and saw Tori.  Once we walked over to the start line things got real!  I saw a bunch of running friends, said our good lucks, got rid of my beautiful throw away gear (Thank you Jamie for the sweatshirt), sang the national anthem and we were off!  The race started right on time!  I was a little nervous actually about starting on time because in races past, and especially an inaugural event things CAN and DO go wrong!  We had no issues at all!.

My goal was to start off a little slower and to stay between the 4:45 and 5:00 pace group.  Should that have been the first sign this race wouldn’t go well?  When we started the 5:00 pace group started out fast!  I wasn’t willing to let my legs go that fast.  I was hoping they were using the going out fast to bank time just in case for later in the race.  We never caught up to them.  I looekd up the pacers finish time and it was 4:50:xx.  In hindsite, should I have started with them?  Would I have burned out even quicker?  I rememebr when we were approaching the mile 4 the second time, we saw the 5 hour pace group and all I wanted was to run with people!

After emailing with my Coach we decided on trying to maintain even splits this race, each mile between 10:55-11:05 not including my warm up miles and my push to the end.

Miles 1-13 were so much fun!  It was great to be on a course with great aid stations and seeing and cheering other runners on!  I loved listening in to other runners chatting with their friends.  During the first mile we saw Chelsea and Jessica, I got rid of my last long sleeve and we said our goodbyes! (They kicked butt by the way).

Mile 12.5 we saw Diana and Jamie with signs and cheering!  I said to Behn, “are those my friends?” and I was so happy to see their faces!  They ran with us and we were telling them about the course. At that point we (I) were feeling strong and confident.  We are about an 11:07 pace or so, according to my watch, 11:12 pace according to the tracker.  EIther way, we were on tack to a sub 5.  I was so happy at that point!  I knew a PR was in reach.

Come mile 17 is where it got hard.  I was able to keep that pace for about the first 17 minutes and then I crashed and burned. The weather got warm, real warm, real quickly!  I started taking salt/electrolyte tabs at the 1:40, 2:40, and about 4 hourish marks.  I took a huma gel avery 4-5 miles.  I took water at every water stop.  After mile 18 I started taking 2 waters at each stop.  I do not think nutrition or hydration was an issue for this race.

I started to see the numbers on my watch get higher (pace) and I started to lose hope.  I tried as much as I could to keep going.  Mile 18 is the first time we took an extended water walk break.  I thought about quitting that early.  At 19 I knew I could still hit my sub 5 goal even if my A goal was out the door at this point.  

20-25 was just a blur.  I remember running, walking, crying.  I wanted to be done but couldn’t push myself to go any faster.  I don’t know if it was my legs, breathing, heat heart rate. I don’t know what caused it.  

Mile 25 we saw Jamie and Diana again with their signs.  They ran us in to mile 26 and then we said our goodbyes and Behn and I finished up.  

We ran in holding hands and laughing, it was simply wonderful!  Beth called something out about us.  Tori and Beth gave us our medals.  (Sorry I didn't stop and chat, I just realized I just kept walking, everything was a blur) Thank you Tori for chasing us down and congratulating us!

Random Thoughts:
This is the get me the hell to the finish line now look
I don’t even remember at what mile we saw Misty but I remember what a smile it brought to my face! 
We saw Emily and her family on our first half of the run! 
The water stops were so energetic!  The half marathon course was great, but to have to do that again, it was mentally challenging!  Behn and I were running by our selves for the second half, no one in site. 
Stephanie yelled for us on her way back to an AMAZING  Half marathon PR! 
The race was very well marked.  The volunteers were amazing! 
I hate how the people trying to get by in their cars gave some of them such trouble.  

I know I am supposed to be so happy and bubbly that I just ran my 4th marathon, but I am not.  I am disappointed in myself that I couldn’t keep pushing to hit my goal that I wanted to bad and know I have in me.  Behn kept asking if we were on pace because he knew how much it meant to me and how much I have trained for this race.  We were certainly on track till about mile 23.  At that point as long as we maintaned 12 min miles we would have come in sub 5.  I couldn't.  I don't know if I mentally gave up and threw in the towel or what happened.
So So SO Happy to be done~

Now it is time for a few week recovery then it is half marathon time, maybe If I am up for it I will even throw in a little triathlon or something this year.

The day ended with ice cream and us being in bed before 8!  

How do you get over a “bad” race or not hitting your goal?
What is your favorite recovery or reward for a hard race?

One more for good measure.. I think the face explains it all

Monday, December 15, 2014

Best Damn Race: Pre Race Day!

18 weeks of training is over and I finished my 4th marathon, The Best Damn Race, Cape Coral.

I brought my computer to the hotel on Saturday hoping to get a post about goals but that did not happen.  Here is what they were:

A: sub 4:50
B: Sub 5
C: PR  (Sub 5:42:20) Disney Marathon, 2013 (I did Goofy) <- this goal was a given..Unless something very, very strange occurred

For 2 years I had one goal in mind when it came to the marathon and that was to go sub 5.  The New York city marathon left me mentally and physically exhausted and I said it would be a long time before I would do another marathon and when I do decide to do one, I would know I have a sub 5 in me.

Many moons ago I signed myself and Behn up for the BDR Marathon during their special pricing.  I was able to secure my entry for $1.00 and Behn’s for $40.00 so if something came up I wouldn’t be upset.  Behn and I would run this together and I would get my sub 5!

My Training:

I worked with Coach Steve this time around after many recommendation from friends and I think he gave me a great plan.  This was the first time I used a high mileage (for me) plan.  Only once before this year had I ever hit 100 miles in a month.  That was over summer vacation training for the NY Marathon.  Living about 15 minutes from work gave me the luxury to have more time to train.  It gave me the ability to train before and after work.  I was so lucky to have met Kristen as she would wake up at 4 am with me and run “our loop”.  She didn’t have to be ready for work till 8 and I had to be home by 6 to be out of the door at 6:30.  We would do our track practice around our development Thursday mornings because it can be scary out there.  I ran almost every run each week.  For some of you that is obvious, but if you ever followed my past training plans I am notorious for missing some because of work, traffic, etc.  My long runs were done with my Brandon running group or with a few girlfriends and Behn.  We had lots of fun, chatted, and got through the hot summer months together.  Sometimes runs were cut short or not as fast as they were supposed to be, but I think I had my best training season ever.  I went into this race confident.  Maybe too confident?

The Day Before the Race:

Behn and I made our way down to Cape Coral Saturday morning.  Once we arrived we made a quick pit stop at Publux for a bathroom and lunch then made our way to the expo.  The expo opened at 12 and we got there around 12:15 and couldn’t quite find where to pick up the packets and at that point, the crazy was about to take over until we saw some nice people walking with green bags and we knew were to go.  We picked up our bag of goodies, said “Hello” to Nick, the CEO, and Patrick, the Race director and made our way to the hotel.  We stuffed our face then went on out 2 mile shake out run.  The run was not fun!  At one point I stopped and thought I was going to pass out, puke, or something.  I was dizzy and almost had to sit down.  I wasn’t too nervous about Sunday just yet.  The rest of saturday we just laid in bed, watched TV, ate the other half of our Publix subs, hydrated and we were in bed before 9.  Our alarm was set for 5:10 and it was race day!

*Pictures will be updated once my computer wants to work :)