Sunday, May 18, 2008

5/18/08 Capital City Marathon

Seems like I was just running a marathon 8 days ago. This will be my first time doing back to back weekends. No pressure to run fast, all I need to do is finish and I will accomplish many goals. Warm with abundant sunshine.

Start - I feel a little suspect downing a pill, but the Succeed S-caps are just sodium salts. Lesa recommended that I try them and I was so pleased to see the box arrive in the mail earlier this week. They are supposed to help with nausea and light headedness my two biggest limiting factors on most marathons. I also feel a little funny with my purple #5 bib and yellow tank top. I am not a tank top guy, but it is warm today. Throw in a new white cap and sunglasses and I barely recognized myself. Say hi to Mike and Ashley and plan to run nice and easy with Ashley with walking breaks at the water stops.
Mile 2 - Giving the tour of Olympia. Here is a course I know well. Many a long run on the outer miles. This is the third CCM on this "new" course and I have run them all. My 4th CCM in a row, and 5th CCM (hence the number 5 that I did not ask for but was a nice touch. Ron Fowler got number 25)
Mile 4 - Dumping water on my head to cool off already. I usually save that for later in the race, especially if it is cool or windy, but no chance of that today and it feels nice.
Mile 8 - Pleasant running with some friends. We are going slower than last week, but not that much. I look forward to showing off the big hill to come and it does not dissapoint.
Mile 12.4 - Mike Strong is walking?! That is really bad. Later found out he dropped out at mile 14. We are running steady at about 8:43/mile average.
Mile 14 - Hill number 2 conquered. Really it is a small one, but a little steep and up out of the sea level we had just dropped to. This hill marks the end of the rolling hilly section and leads to 5 miles of gentle up and level.
Mile 16 - We hear a runner fall behind us. I see Maniac Herb on the ground and stop to turn around, really afraid that he collapsed or something. He says he is fine, just tripped on the gravel and took a spill. He catches us and I see the blood dripping down from his knee, cool, and so glad he is OK.
Mile 17 - It dawns on me that I have had zero lightheadedness and very little tummy trouble despite having a gu, lots of water and some ultima drink. This is awesome!! I felt way worse at this stage of the race last week. My quadriceps however are starting to really complain. Nothing I can do about that. Ashley and I had been starting to split up a bit, sometimes me in front, other times she took the lead. Now she is moving ahead for good. Time to battle it out with myself.
Mile 20 - Take a pill at the water stop. I have done very well to not take any walking breaks, except at the water stations, but now I will start the walk/shuffle/jog thing. Later in the race than last week!! And it is only because my quads are shot. I can blame the tired legs on Tacoma and be very pleased with whatever happens now. I dump 4 cups of water on my head. Much of it reaches my shoes and makes them heavy and soggy. I can feel my socks sliding around.
Mile 21 - Playing leapfrog with a couple of runners. Head is great and I am in good spirits, joking with the spectators and volunteers. Long steep downhill. Sudden knee pain/twinge. I am sure it is because my quads are in tatters and I am not too concerned, but it stops me in my tracks and I need to walk.
Mile 22 - Here is the final hill, the dreaded, long Eastside mountain. I put my head down and jog along at a slow pace but make it most of the way without walking. I remember previous years here, staggering or walking because I might faint. This year my head feels good and I am so grateful for that.
Mile 23 - Being passed by a fair share or runners, but what should I expect at 10 minutes per mile? Knee pain again, and again.
Mile 25 - My favorite location in all of racing, I see the downhill ahead. I am not going to beat 4 hours, but that is OK. Not too focussed on the watch. Also feeling like I should not give it my all on the long downhill to the finish in order to protect my legs and not end up on the ground. I have a real fear that my legs might just give way.
Mile 25.7 - I can see the finish now. Pick up the pace some. Not quite as emotional as I had expected.
Mile 26.2 - Done and survived in pretty good shape. As I walk around I can tell that my legs are more beat up and stiffening worse than last week. Eat some pizza, watch the finishers and keep moving some. So great to see Tracy finish in just under 5 hours.
126 of 315
Race #136 Marathon #20 Capital City Marathon #5

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