Monday, October 22, 2012

PR's were meant to be crushed!!

Beginning of the race.  Let's get this party started!!
The time was finally here.  The Columbus Marathon.  I was finally going to run a full marathon with the temperature at less than 90 degrees.  Temperatures were perfect.  43 degrees at the beginning of the race and around 50 degrees at race end.  I couldn't have asked for better conditions for me to try to break 4 hours for the first time in a marathon and beat my PR of 4 hours and 8 minutes.  There was virtually no wind at the start either and a very flat course.  Only 100 ft of elevation.  My hotel was in a great location as well.  Less than a tenth of a mile from the start/finish line.  This allowed me to not have to be out in the cold at all before the race started.  Race began at 7:30 am and I left the hotel at 7:15.

My buddy Jerrad made the trip with me to watch me run and for moral support.  It was great to have him there.  Really glad he got to make the trip with me.  It was a huge help.  He is an awesome friend.

My goal was to go under 4 hours for the first time but the ultimate goal in the back of my mind was to go under 3:40. This would mean an 8:24 per mile pace.  I know, pretty aggressive for someone who had never ran one under 4 hours before.  I used my garmin just to track the run but for pacing I used my stopwatch with a pace band.  This is so much more accurate than a garmin and it worked quite nicely as you will soon see.  Matter of fact, I couldn't even get in the corral.  I was in corral A and was looking for  pace groups.  I couldn't find any of the pace groups in the corrals so I guess I would be pacing myself.  This was the largest turnout ever for the Columbus Marathon and people were standing outside to corrals at the start of the race.  It was a sellout for both the full marathon and the half marathon.  The race started and even though several of us were outside of the corral to start with it transitioned quite smoothly.  We were off!!

End of the race.  I was all business in this one.
Mile 1, feeling great!!  8:08 mile, a little fast, slow down.  Mile 2 7:55, Mile 3 7:57, Mile 4 7:53, Mile 5 7:41 feeling awesome!!  Mile 6 7:51, Mile 7 8:07, Mile 8 7:51, Mile 9 7:46, Mile 10 7:47, Mile 11 7:55, Mile 12 8:07, Mile 13 7:39.  At the half way point I'm at 1:43:09.  If I keep this up I will finish in 3:26!!  Oh my, I'm still feeling good.  Right at the half way point you see the finish for the half marathoners.  I look over, wave at it and keep going!!  I get to keep running!!  Bring on the next half!! 

Mile 14 7:40, Mile 15 7:57, Mile 16 7:53.  Still feeling great!!  Mile 17 8:06, Mile 18 8:09.  At about mile 18 we got to run through Ohio Stadium where Ohio State plays football.  The stands were packed in the end zone side to cheer us on as we ran through.  It was awesome motivation to keep you moving!!  Mile 19 8:21 my worst mile yet, Mile 20 8:29 starting to feel a little tired but not bad.  Nothing like previous marathons I had run.  My legs had been dead at mile 16 at some previous marathons so I knew I was still in a position to finish strong.  Mile 20 I'm at 2:41:17 which is 19 minutes faster than I had ever done 20 miles at.  My fastest 20 miler up to this point was a training run 6 weeks back where I was right at 3 hours.  Mile 21 8:44, come on legs, keep moving.  Mile 22 8:58, Mile 23 9:12 the 9's for the first time.  Mile 24 9:22, Mile 25 9:43 come on legs, move it now!!  1.2 miles left!!  Here goes nothing.  I know there is something left in the tank.  I feel this renewed energy at this point when I realize I am going to go under 4 hours for the first time.  JUST DON'T FALL DOWN!!  Mile 26 8:12!!  Wow, where did that come from. The last 2 tenths of a mile I see Jerrad and hear him cheering me on.  He said I blew by him so fast he couldn't even get a picture.  Last 2 tenths I had a 7:18 pace.  Finished in 3 hours 39 minutes and 9 seconds!!  NEW PR BY OVER 29 MINUTES!!  I really needed this one to help build my confidence that I can run fast(well, fast for me) at the marathon distance and don't just die at the end.  This one gave me hope that I will one day qualify and run in Boston!!  That is my ultimate goal and I will get there!!