Saturday, June 25, 2011

6/25/11 Seattle Rock and Roll Marathon

Third annual event and my third time here. See previous posts for course description. The trip to the expo on Thursday, the 3:30AM wake up today, and the associated costs have me thinking that I will take next year off. There are so many other races that I could do in June. It is fun to be part of this massive event though, despite the hassles. Today is special in that when I finish I will have completed 19 marathons or ultras within 365 days earning me Iridium (4 star) status in the Marathon Maniacs. I mapped this out quite some time ago and almost had it in April but had to skip a race then. I think that the 16 long races I did in 2010 was more manageable and I plan to stick to something closer to that for the near future. This will be my third marathon in four weeks plus the Sound to Narrows race. I had a very good run in Vancouver six days ago and I have not ever raced marathons six days apart. So I expect to be a little slower than usual, hopefully not crashing too bad. Must hold back in the early miles!! If I could break 4 hours that would be awesome but is not mandatory for me to consider the day a success.

Get to the start line in plenty of time for the 7AM start. I wander around the "Athletes Village" for a while. 20,000 runners, most doing the half, but I do not see anyone that I know. Find a few MMs. There is supposed to be a group photo of the 143 MMs who are here, at 6:20AM. At a normal race that would give plenty of time. I was going to join the photo but it is getting so crowded I can hardly walk anywhere, I still need to use the bathroom, and my corral is really far away. So I work my way up to corral 7 and get there in good time. Chat with Marie for a bit and then line up with Betsy and Ashley. Betsy beat me by a few minutes here last year, passing me late in the race, and she hopes to run a similar time, so we will run together some I am sure. Cloudy and not too warm, a little humid.

Start - Wave starts make it relatively easy to get up to pace. First mile is a little slow. No need to dodge around everybody, its good in that it makes me hold back.

Mile 3 - Ashley goes on ahead. She is more comfortable at 8:45 pace and I refuse to go faster than 8:50 in the first half.

Mile 4 - Betsy gets ahead at an aid station where I walk through. I'll keep her in my sights for a long while.

Mile 10 - Runner ahead of me has his bib on his back. That is not so unusual, but what is memorable is that his number is the same one that I had at this race last year. (5050 in honor of my 50th) I can not quite catch up to him.

Mile 11 - On the I-90 bridge on Lake Washington. I see an osprey. Then I watch it set up for a dive. It plummets straight down, but then pulls up short of the water and starts hovering again.

Mile 12 - In the long tunnel. Warmer. I start to tire. Also my right foot aches a little.

Mile 13.1 - 1:57, good job of holding back. Tiring. Aching foot is a little worse. Awesome view of Safeco Field.

Mile 15 - On to the Alaska Way viaduct. Foot is better, manageable discomfort.

Mile 17 - Finally reel Betsy in as she is tiring. I feel better than I did a few miles back. Good enough energy, beat up legs.

Mile 18.5 - Kid with a sign that reads "Release the Kraken". Too funny. Finally hit the turn around and can head back towards the finish.

Mile 21 - Whoa, tiring fast now. Pretty sure that I will not beat 4. I am able to keep running though. Legs are sore and shot. I am over 50 miles for the week. I can run on shot legs, but it just is not all that fun. Still keeping a good attitude. Through another tunnel with very slanty camber and back up onto the viaduct. Figured out that I can make the spectators on the bridge tops above us cheer if I just put my arms in the air.

Mile 25 - Last out and back, now up the final hill. At 3:50 and the 4 hour mark is just out of reach. Level ground. Make the turn to the off ramp at 3:56. If I can run down the ramp in two minutes and then hit the last two turns in another two doesn't look that far from up here.

Mile 26 - Well it was farther than I thought it would be. I did push hard the last bit, but I will not beat 4. I gave the whole race a good effort and I am happy with the results.


68th Marathon or Ultra


1,000th place of 3,520



KAS said...

Iridium??? So will you glow in the dark now???

Ginger said...

1,000th! That has to be a good sign :)