Sunday, August 7, 2011

Road Trip Days 10 & 11: Morgan Valley Marathon to Home

Saturday my dad and I got up early to drive up to Morgan City where I was going to run the marathon and he was going to run the 5k. The race started at 5:30. I ate a banana and drank some water before we left and felt pretty good, if a little tight, especially my right knee. The field was small, with only 65 runners total.

I lined up at the front and followed two other young guys, Brian Tucker and Gentry Lawson (learned all these names afterwords) out at the start, following them by around 20 feet for the first few miles.

We were right behind a police car who was guiding the route for us, but it was still dark and the lights were bright enough to be bothersome for sure. I caught up with the two leaders at mile 3 or 4 but let them leave me behind a little later. I got passed by an older guy, Greg Richens, (who beat me at Provo City half marathon at the age of 55) moving fast and watched him move into the lead.

Zach Rich caught up to me and we ran together for a long time. We both got passed by Chad James as we closed in on Mt. Green and made the turn to go back up to Morgan. I felt great the whole time up until this point (except for chafed nipples, which I got band aids for) and left Zach to go after Chad. I was running 7:40 miles steady until mile 14, (13.1 in 1:38 something) But, unbeknown to me (although it makes perfect since in hindsight), the road back up to Morgan was a steady, if slight, climb. My pace slowed. My knees really started bothering me. I still felt pretty good until mile 20 or so, and then started feeling really sluggish. Nothing as bad as my first two marathons, but still pretty bad.

I tried to keep a steady pace and minimize walking breaks, almost all limited to take water at aid stations. Probably should have taken a little more gu to get me through the wall. But mainly I think it was the cold I had a few days before that kept me off the pace I was looking for. Or maybe a shortage in training. Either way, I readjusted my goal to 3:30 instead of 3:15 and just tried to hold steady, as each progressive mile seemed to get longer and longer.

I saw who I thought was Greg Richins up ahead of me around mile 23 or so, so I decided to try to catch up to him. We also started passing half marathon runners, which was a nice boost. I caught of to Greg circling around the high school and knew I was almost home. I just kept imagining collapsing into my dad or Cait's arm at the finish line and how good that would feel and tried to keep my feet moving. I also could tell I was going to be right around 3:30 so I tried to push as much as I could on the road to the fairgrounds, but I just didn't have much left.

Yeah, I wore my brother's old cross country top, because I forgot mine. Also, check out the terrible form

I stumbled into the chute as I saw Cait and my dad waiting for me, thinking "It's over" and "I wish Theo was here". I ended up not collapsing into anyone's arms, crossing in 3:30:04 (even though they didn't have the marathon times showing, but the half instead) but leaned on Cait for a good while and sat down. I was exhausted and got cold really fast (it was not as warm as anyone expected). I got some help and food at the aid tent. Sat under a blanket and had my blisters covered along with two slight abrasions from the 5 Fingers, which otherwise did absolutely great.

I slowly recovered as we waited for the awards to be given. I took fourth overall, so no cash, but I did win my age group which won me a horseshoe. Not a great prize, but oh well, age group prizes are never great and there is almost never a prize for fourth place.

Where I sat waiting for awards

I really liked the race. I would have liked it to be a downhill course started from up near the resevoir, but there is no reason every marathon should be downhill. The aid stations were great and they even had some mobile aid stations driving around. I'm sure the field will grow, so that not so many runners have to run alone as long as I did (miles 14-21). I would really like to make this my "regular" marathon, but we'll have to see.

Future running plans will have to be the subject of another post, as they don't extend beyond revving up my training for a few months before the snows hit. We'll see.


We came home from camping. Tried to clean up. Cait went shopping. Theo didn't nap. We ate shrimp and potatoes for dinner. Theo fell asleep early. I went for a run.

1 comment:

  1. Tim, I love that you blog! I thoroughly enjoy keeping up with your family's life :)