Another marathon in the books. 4:49. Not a PB or a bust and I did not have negative splits. Many positives. A new reason to run....because I can. The weather was perfect. Sunny and high forties in the beginning and high fifties at the end. The route was beautiful, scenic, and challenging. It is hard not to be patriotic in such a setting with the marines all around and so much pride all around. I am truely proud to be an American.
The positives. My prerace meal was good. A gluten free Java chocolate brownie and water three hours before the marathon start. 10oz of water/gatorade mix right before the start. No hunger at or low sugar feelings at all. I decided to carry only Gu gels and take the Powerade on the course. I began with a full cup of Powerade alternating with a full cup of water with a Gu at the aide stations which were a little further then 2 miles apart. I did get a little thirsty during the second half. If it had been much warmer, hydration may have been an issue. I took endurlyes after 2 hrs for a total of 4 alternating with aminoacid tablets from Hammer. They worked out well. I should have taken more. At mile 19 they gave away Sportbeans which I took and ate one by one. It did help the cramping I was feeling at mile 16 to eighteen. I think the fatigue was more related to decreased training miles instead of caloric depletion but I am not sure. I do not think I could have taken more Gus'. Maybe more sportsbeans.
I never lost my head and I felt I was present most of the race. In the beginning I focused on keeping my HR below 160. I did not want to go lactic and have a 5 plus hour marathon because of pushing for a pace I wanted versus a pace I could handle. I also never had a low moment when I just did'nt care. I kept trying to keep my HR greater then 150 during the second half to maintain pace. During the last three miles I kept pushing although the lap pace does not show so much repeating to myself that slower was not going to be less painful. I finished happy and hard and thanked each Marine I passed for there service. Semper Fi.
I found a new reason to run.. I can. I am healthy and free. Free because of our military who fight to maintain our fredom. Thank you all. At the expo my friend Sally noticed the Hope for Wounded Warriors table. This is an organization that raises money to help our wounded warriors with living expenses, education and other supportive services for them and their families. I was immediately sold. Sally's late husband was retired Navy and we loved him dearly. It would have pleased him so much to help these people. I bought a race shirt and immediately decided that this would be who I would run for from now on in future marathons and triathlons. I wore that shirt with pride and humility in honor of these wounded heros. Thank you.
Things to change. I need to go back to running 3 to 4 twenty mile long runs at whatever pace. I need a longer mid week run as well as the speed work. I think the cross training is good but no substitute for running when it comes to doing well in the marathon. I need to focus on more electrolytes and calculating my caloric intake during the race. I need to run.