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Tacoma City Marathon - RunMarathon

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Tacoma, Washington
United States
50F / 10C
Total Time = 4h 42m 5s
Overall Rank = 217/271
Age Group = 50-54
Age Group Rank = 25/28
Pre-race routine:

Got to walk the dogs when I woke up, get the kinks out of the body after a toss and turn nite in a hotel bed. Nice Hotel and room, but I never get a good nite sleep before the race.

Got to eat my oatmeal and drank hotel room coffee that was some weak organic crap. Looked like tea and no flavor.
Event warmup:

Walked the 6 blocks to the start area, NICE, MANY Porta Potties/Honey Buckets available, no lines to take the last prerace Pee.

  • 4h 42m 5s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 10m 46s  min/mile

I had only run 53 miles in the month of April for training, and haven't done much for the last 3 weeks. So I was aprehensive about how it would shake out. Just want to finish under 5 hours and not have any hamstring/ITB freeze up.

Started off by following the last pace group of 4:15, Passed them at the first water station and thought what the heck, keep up this pace...They did catch up with me at the 5K marker in the first park. (29 min split) And this is where I had my first little tweak. Left foot got flexed/tweeked running on the gravel path washout. So for the next mile on the streets made sure I had good foot placement and it went away...Had the 4:15 pace group in sight, and started to run with MM Steve, made the miles go by, that is why I missed marker 5.

So when we hit 6 miles he stopped and I kept on (57min split) . I was taking water/guh20 at the stations and drinking from my bottle of NUUN. Wanted to use a PP, but there was always a line, didn't want to waste minutes waiting.

Next 3-4 miles were pretty flat, but scenic along the waterfront. Sun was warm but the air was cool, actually saw my breath going through the shade of trees. Play pass and catch up with the Pace group and some other gals that were running in my area. Lots of sweating during this time so I kept drinking.

Got to around 9 or 10 miles and went through a cool tunnel in the roadway. Yelled to hear the echo but then had some going up and started to slow down some. Entered Point Definance Park around 11 miles ?
Got caught by Laura from Puyallap who was on a quest to become a MM, so we ran together for 3 miles or so. Went through the half in 2:09, which I was happy with, she thought it was slow. Than we burned through 14 in a 9:18! whoa! I knew I need to break company with her and plus I still had make the call to nature which I did by the Narrows Bridge pull out.

Leaving the park had a steep downhill and than uphill that shocked the legs. Started to get a sore right hip and my right quads were really sore...Also started to think my blister was happening on my left foot. So for a bunch of those boring miles through residential, I was running with a strange lurching stride of tight quad and tender toes. Plus this is always the miles that my body starts to go into one gear, FORWARD SLOW.

Ran with another guy around 19-20, I get to gabbing about races and stuff that I miss the markers. But I let him go, just wasn't up to handling the pace. Kept the grind on past the Golfcourse and bike paths, trying to get some kind of surge of energy, caught a couple of early starters and others that were in a little worse shape than me.

Finally got around 24 where there was a nasty steep downhill. Felt ok for the first half of the block but than I almost had to come to a walk. A real Quad Killer, but now I was in the final flat/slightly downhill final miles. Trying to get things in order, splash some water in the cap to stay cool, drink a little and hope the finish would hurry up.

Had a nice little kick at the end, saw wife and dogs. Got to meet Prez Steve Yee (big time MM). Yea! Finished the 19th stand alone Marathon. But 23 over all. Counting Ultras and IMs.

What would you do differently?:

Train more, stay injury free sorta. Loose more weight. Was feeling pretty good as compared to my last two marathons where I was much heavier.

So I'm calling it a very good marathon. So little training and still put in decent splits and Mental focus was solid. Able to grind and keep grinding. Very little walking.
Post race
Warm down:

Hobbled uphill to parking lot and drove to a BBQ place called Famous Daves. Ate alot of grub and Sweet Ice Tea.

What limited your ability to perform faster:


But! I'm happy with the weight loss difference from my previous two marathons. Think running at around 212 is better than 221. Also the arms and core felt pretty good. Must continue to improve on those areas.

Event comments:

Course is Scenic, has variety, has easy flat or slightly downhill sections but also challenging short sections. Small but excited Fan support. Law Enforcement did a super job of intersection control.

Highly Recommend this Marathon as a must run for others. Plus Marathon Maniacs sponsor it so it has to be Tops.

Last updated: 2009-04-05 12:00 AM
04:42:05 | 26.2 miles | 10m 46s  min/mile
Age Group: 25/28
Overall: 217/271
Performance: Good
(1) 8:56 (2)9:37 (3) 9:56 (4)9:40 (5&6)18:24 (7)9:40 (8)9:53 (9)9:47 (10)9:54 (11)10:56 (12)9:47 (13)11:50 (14)9:18 (15)11:40 (16&17)23:32 (18)11:49 (19&20)22:41 (21)11:58 (22)12:47 (23)12:18 (24)12:39 (25)11:37 (26)11:15 (.2)1:59
Course: City streets, Old Growth Forest Park roadways, gravel park trail, bike paths. Some gradual uphills and downhills, some short steep uphill and downhill.
Keeping cool Average Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 4
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

2009-05-05 3:16 PM

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Bellingham, Washington
Subject: Tacoma City Marathon

2009-05-06 10:09 PM
in reply to: #2132188

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Extreme Veteran
Champaign, Illinois
Subject: RE: Tacoma City Marathon

Great report... unlike mine!  I'm always amazed at all these mararthons you've packed up... unbelievable... I know, there are people who do even more than that... It's just amazing. 


Great job!

2009-05-07 2:57 PM
in reply to: #2135582

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Extreme Veteran
Subject: RE: Tacoma City Marathon
Nice race.  I always enjoy reading your reports.

Well done!
2009-05-10 8:13 AM
in reply to: #2132188

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Newbury Park, CA
Subject: RE: Tacoma City Marathon

Good job Spence!  It is amazing on how you can keep going and going with Marathons.  I would lose my ability to move after the first couple.

And you got some sweet tea

2009-05-10 10:51 PM
in reply to: #2132188

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Madison, Wiscansin
Subject: RE: Tacoma City Marathon
Haha, putting a steep downhill in the 24th mile is downright evil. Glad you were able to meet your goal.
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