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Charlottesville Marathon - RunMarathon

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Charlottesville, Virginia
United States
Bad to the bone endurance sports
60sF / 0C
Total Time = 5h 39m 50s
Overall Rank = 368/377
Age Group = W30-39
Age Group Rank = 38/39
Pre-race routine:

Woke up around 4:00 a.m., hour drive over to C-ville for the 6:30 start. Ate a Mojo Bar (thank goodness for Target) and a diet Pepsi. Used the porta-potties a couple times - good thing because it got crazy busy about 20 minutes before the race. Waited for bag check to open and then just hung out trying to keep warm. (Race started in the 50's and ended in the 70s...)
Event warmup:

  • 5h 39m 50s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 12m 58s  min/mile

I should be happy I completed my first marathon, but instead I'm pissed because I could have done better on a healthy knee. And I made a bunch of mistakes - picking a hilly-azz first marathon, picking a weak training program, not following my training program with the mid-week runs, running on a bum knee. But I wanted to do this and I knew I could. I'm kind of stubborn that way. And I did - I finished before the cut-off and I finished on my own two bloody feet. :) Ewww.

My thoughts were to run good but easy through half, to make the half cut-off of 3 hours. No problem. Done and dunner. 2:16 at the half aid station and feeling fine. My strategy through the first half was to have fun, run easy, and walk all the uphills. Which I did.

My pre-race strategy for the 2nd half was to keep going easy and finish strong, but then my knee crapped out. After the 1/2 mark, it hurt to run downhills, so I walked both the uphills and the downhills and jogged whenever it was relatively flat. That worked until about mile 20, when everything hurt. So I walked. I tried to walk fast, I tried to limp jog a bit, but it didn't work. So I walked to finish. I was passed by a lot of people in the last mile or so, which was all downhill. Unfortunately, by that point, the downhill hurt worse than anything so I kind of sidled down the last mile. But I finished before the cut-off of 6 hours and I finished on my feet.
What would you do differently?:

Pick a flat first mary.
Pick a better training plan.
Pick a race that was more populated...the mind demons got to me around mile 23. I would have done better with someone around.
Post race
Warm down:

Got some food, which sucked 'cause I was BOP (but not DFL and definitely not DNF...although I considered it more than once. I only cried twice.) ;)

Got my dry bag.

Went to the med tent for ice - they were shutting down, but there was a sweet girl there who helped me anyway...and who the heck shuts down a med tent with 20 minutes left before the race clock is turned off? While the girl was putting ice on my knee, I realized my shoes were bloody, so she helped me take those off and bandaged up my feet. Thank goodness I had flipflops in my dry bag. I can't thank the girl enough for how sweet she was to me - I was a bloody nasty mess and she made me feel better.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

My (&#$#r%wd(f*& KNEE.

I will strengthen my knee and I will knock out a 4:30 marathon. I will.

Event comments:

The course is challenging. It is hard. I should have picked a flat one, but I knew what I was getting into.

The aid stations were great. I had my own fuel, but they had plenty of water, gatorade, and later in the race Gu. The folks were cheerful and helpful, even for the BOP.

The post-race food was disappointing, but I assume that is because I was BOP, which sucks. But I wasn't that hungry, so whatever.

I should have run a more populated race, because then I wouldn't have been so BOP and alone. Also, I would have liked more spectators, more spontaneous stuff like oranges and beer on the course, etc. This is a great race to test whether I could do an ultra - because the potties were not available on the course and I was running with myself and couldn't even see anyone half the time.

Thoughts 1 day post-race...strengthen and rehab the knee and come back strong this fall. Let's see what I can do.

Last updated: 2008-12-29 12:00 AM
05:39:50 | 26.2 miles | 12m 58s  min/mile
Age Group: 38/39
Overall: 368/377
Performance: Below average
Avg HR = 142 Max HR = 170 First half (2:16:40): 10:10/9:47/9:58/9:50/9:29/10:26(SOB hill)/9:47/8:03(mismark)/13:05(mismark)/9:48/13:45(MOFO hill)/10:00/12:28 Second half: 12:14/14:11/12:41/14:31/13:02/15:13/15:40(total knee meltdown)/16:30/16:30/16:25/16:18/16:57/22:51 (last 1.2)
Course: Absolutely beautiful. Absolutely challenging. Absolutely hilly. First 2 miles through C-ville, past Jefferson's rotunda on UVA campus. Then out into horse & wine country. Gorgeous... SOB hill right after 5-mile mark (and had to come back down the damn thing on the way in). Some flat until the 1/2mary turn around, and then rolling hills through more horse country. MOFO hill after mile 10, and then onto gravel/softpack for 4-5 miles, loop back to course and return to town, with slight change back through a different part of campus.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Average
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 2
Good race? No
Course challenge Too hard
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Below average
Race evaluation [1-5] 3

2009-04-19 9:30 AM

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Out running or enjoying a fine glass of red...
Subject: Charlottesville Marathon

2009-04-19 9:43 AM
in reply to: #2095091

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West Chester, Ohio
Subject: RE: Charlottesville Marathon

Congratulations for sticking it out. 

That is a tough course for a first mrathon.  You finished under your own power, that's awesome.

2009-04-19 10:05 AM
in reply to: #2095091

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Richmond, VA
Subject: RE: Charlottesville Marathon

The hills on that course could hurt someone with perfect knees.


Congrats for toughening it out.  There are at least 2 excellent take-aways from this race:

(1) YOU DID IT!  Congrats on now being a marathoner; and

(2) When you are healthy, the next race is going to seem that much easier!



2009-04-19 10:16 AM
in reply to: #2095091

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Simpsonville, SC
Subject: RE: Charlottesville Marathon
You are a hero in my book. Please share with me those HTFU thoughts that kept you going through the pain. I'm sure I will need them in June. Way to go with the whole knee mess and bleeding feet. You finished. You did it. You are AWESOME!!
2009-04-19 10:39 AM
in reply to: #2095091

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Science Nerd
Redwood City, California
Subject: RE: Charlottesville Marathon
Congratulations!!  You did it and finished before the cut-off time!  I know how hard that is with knee problems.

Plus, now that you know what not to do, you can be even faster next time. 
2009-04-19 1:44 PM
in reply to: #2095176

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Subject: RE: Charlottesville Marathon

How cool is that ^^^^.

PLUS, you did it on a challenging course! Which means every other marathon from now on will be EASY.

(Well, ok, maybe not "easy," but you know what I mean.... If you can do a tough course, then you know you can do one that has fewer hills, too.)


Here, for this, you get a glass of red wine. In fact, you get a bunch of glasses.

2009-04-19 3:14 PM
in reply to: #2095091

Subject: ...
This user's post has been ignored.
2009-04-19 3:54 PM
in reply to: #2095091

Olney, MD
Subject: RE: Charlottesville Marathon
You are a hero to me! Congrats on sticking it out!
2009-04-19 8:22 PM
in reply to: #2095091

Subject: RE: Charlottesville Marathon

you are amazing, that sounded tough as hell but you stuck it out AMAZING, TRULY AMAZING!

2009-04-19 8:39 PM
in reply to: #2095091

Clifton, NJ
Subject: RE: Charlottesville Marathon

congratulations on finishing! you toughed it out and are now a marathon finisher - there are thousands and thousands of people who cannot say that.

2009-04-20 6:43 PM
in reply to: #2095091

Melon Presser
Subject: RE: Charlottesville Marathon
Congratulations! You had a lot of really tough things going on and you SLAYED THE DRAGON!!!

2009-04-20 6:47 PM
in reply to: #2095091

Subject: RE: Charlottesville Marathon

Congrats, Kristen, you finished! And with your knees intact! So...lemme get this straight, the course was hilly? Great job sticking with it and only crying twice Now go get your knee checked and rehab that thing!

2009-04-21 8:29 AM
in reply to: #2095091

Liverpool, New York
Subject: RE: Charlottesville Marathon

You are amazing!  Many people would have quit.  Just think how great your next race will feel, now that you have this one under your belt.

Congrats on completing your first marathon!!!!

2009-04-22 3:31 PM
in reply to: #2095091

Iron Donkey
, Wisconsin
Subject: RE: Charlottesville Marathon

"Pick a flat first mary."  Why?  You're tougher and better now for doing this one!


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