I always wake up before the alarm no matter what time it's set, and it was no different this morning. Drank EmergenC, quickly got in the bathroom just as the alarm went off at 4 which awaken Marci. Went to breakfast at 4:30. Ate half an English muffin with strawberry jam, bowl of oatmeal with vanilla creamer, boiled egg white, 1/4 banana, cup of orange juice. This is the most breakfast I've ever eaten before a marathon! Lowell assured us that it will make a difference. I was still full from last night's pasta dinner (linguine with mushroom meat sauce, mixed green salad, dinner roll and two giant cookies). Anyway, this just made for more potty stops! :)
Waited for Lowell and left at 5:10 (10 min behind schedule as planned). We parked about 3 blocks northwest of the park/bus loading. By the time we walked there, the bus line was super long and so was the bathroom line! To my joy and delight, Rachelle walked up to say hello and we got to ride on the same bus together. Giving Rachelle a hug was the best part of the morning! :) We arrived at the start with 25 min to spare. Unfortunately we chose the friendliest and SLOWEST p-o-p line, stood there for 20 min without moving a step! Arrrghhh! When they announced the clothing bus leaving in 5 min. we quickly stripped and let Lowell take our bags, still waiting for the pop...dejavu of last year!
We didn't see Lowell by the start arch so we went to look for him inside the tent which was way too warm. I think temp at the start was low 40s, clear sky with a slight breeze. It was SO exciting to watch Jake, Ben, Steve, Jonathan, Sasha, and Allie lining up at the front. I just had to go over and shout "Go! Allie!!!" :) The race didn't start on time. The riffles went off and so did the elite runners! :) Lowell jumped in after the 3:30 group and I protested that we should wait for the 4:15 pace group...he never listens to me! :)
Last year I ran TOU with one goal in mind which was to help Lowell get a BQ with 5 min cushion so that he could sign up that very afternoon. My time last year was 4:01, 5 min faster than Pocatello two weeks prior. With that as a guide, I thought perhaps I would be capable of a 4:19 this year, 5 min faster than Pocatello's 4:24 two weeks ago. Since 4:19 is an odd time, I printed out a 4:15 pace band (Lowell's goal time) for general pace reference. However, my arm warmers covered the watch and pace band for most of the canyon miles, silly me! :) Above all, my main goal today is to run healthy and keep my heart rate
below 170 to avoid a tachycardia episode, all the while paying attention
to the right foot and left hip flexor which has been bugging me
lately. With SGM three weeks away, I do not want any injury.
Lowell and Marci went out too fast for my liking. Within a quarter mile, the 3:55 pace group caught up. It was fun to say hello and visit with my friend, Pron8r (Don who was the pacer). Then MarcieN ran up to me and we visited for about half a mile. I lost sight of Lowell and Marci by the second mile. I told myself to be patient and focus on finding a smooth stride down the canyon. The left hip flexor complained a bit so I went to my abs and that seemed to help!
The Fall colors this year was not as spectacular as in years past perhaps due to a drier spring and summer; but I still soaked in the beauty of the canyon and thanked and joked with the few campers/spectators and volunteers along the way. I leap froged with a girl from Ohio and a 50 state guy, Brian, from Iowa. They asked if I was a 50 state marathoner and if I was Mormon. It was fun to introduce a little history of our great Beehive State and about my Faith. Brian wanted to know the best way to see the Great Salt Lake with only limited time since his flight was to depart at 5pm. I told him how to get to Antelope Island! I also leap froged with George Sunderland whom I secretly admired for his multi-marathoning talents. :)
This is my first marathon without hubby there being my "race manager, picture taker, clothing drop-off-guy, cheer leader and chauffer". It made me a little sad missing him terribly. I found myself pretending that the guy wearing kahki shorts, blue polo and baseball cap appearing intermittently along the course was hubby and I'd smiled broadly every time I spotted him. My heart acted up couple of times on incline/uphill, so I slowed down and tried to breath deeply through my diaphram. I seemed to be not absorbing fluids well, as there was sloshing in my guts. I hit the wall hard after I passed the mile 23 aid station and realized I hadn't taken any Gu for an hour. So I gagged down one without water and hope that it was not too late. The 4:15 pace leaders caught up to me, turned out to be Laura and Steve who knows me and we visited a bit. I felt bad that I couldn't keep pace with them, there seemed to be only couple of runners running with them at this point. The hill on Main Street did not seem that bad. Even though I ran slow I did not walk any uphill. I psyched myself out by not looking/counting the traffic lights or city blocks and before I knew it, I rounded the last corner and saw the finish line. I was very happy to see that I finished under 4:19, no cramping, no tachycardia!
Lowell finished in 4:15:30 and was there to hand me my chocolate milk. I was very happy for him meeting his goal, even though I missed running with him as he always made running so fun. This was his 80th marathon and made extra special when his son, Jason and daughter Kelsey showed up at the finish. After gathering our drop bags, we walked over to Burger King for lunch. Jason drove me back to the hotel while Lowell went to the award ceremony. I was very worried about driving home alone (first for me) so I took extra time to clean up and stretch a bit. I also took couple of Tylenol and salt caps. So glad I made it home safely. Today's run broke my one year streak of even or neg splits runs; so I was a bit bummed and mad at myself for hitting the wall the last 4-5 miles.
Mile splits from Garmin was a bit off from the mile marker, so the slower splits reflected at the beginning of each even miles where I walked thru the aid stations:
1. 9:15 (138) too fast but felt comfortable
2. 9:00 (153) way too fast
3. 9:00 (163) Oops
4. 9:26 (154)
5. 9:41 (154)
6. 9:48 (154) how's that for consistent heart rate! :)
7. 9:43 (157) This is the pace I should've been running all along, dang!
8. 9:52 (152) Gu'd at mile 7 aid station
9. 9:35 (156)
10. 9:56 (156) walked and drank
11. 9:30 (160)
12. 9:24 (164)
13. 9:10 (164) nice tailwind. Ripped off the arm warmer and saw the time: 2:03:25. Oops!!! Ran too fast the 1st half and paid dearly later.
14. 9:27 (168) Gu'd at mile 13 aid station
15. 9:17 (168) feeling energized from the great cheering crowd at mile 14 mouth of canyon.
16. 9:54 (168) high fived and thanked the boy scouts at the mile 15 aid station.
17. 9:23 (168)
18. 9:47 (168)
19. 9:55 (169)
20. 10:53 (171) heart palpitating on the incline so slowed down and controlled the breathing a bit.
21. 9:31 (166)
22. 10:10 (169)
23. 10:53 (167) fading
24. 11:06 (169) hit the wall hard, took a gu, watched the 4:15 pacers pull away :(
25. 10:51 (167) ran this mile with George alongside helped ease the pain and agony
26. 10:42 (169) very tired but did not walk
0.36 9:55 (174) mustered up last ounce of energy, relieved to be done, grateful for the gift of another marathon in the book.
I think I ran with a smile most of the time! :) :) :) :)