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Marine Corps Marathon - RunMarathon

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Arlington, Virginia
United States
Total Time = 4h 33m 53s
Overall Rank = /
Age Group =
Age Group Rank = 0/
Pre-race routine:

Took the Metro to the start with my sherpa (the husband). Got there around 6:45 and immediately got in the porto-potty line, went, got BACK in line, and went again. Had to give my warm clothes back to my husband so he could leave and usher my support crew to their viewing spots, and I hopped in the corral near the 4:30 pacer.
Event warmup:

Shivering! And I took a GU 15 minutes before the start.
  • 4h 33m 53s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 10m 27s  min/mile

This was my first full marathon and I was extremely nervous about it. I caught swine flu in September and was out for two and a half weeks -- missed one of my planned 20-milers and all of my weekly mileage those weeks. My goal had always been to finish in 4:30, but I knew it would be a stretch with my derailed training.

I'm really glad the first few miles were hilly -- I was having a hard time holding my pace back with all of the adrenaline. I kept looking at my watch and catching myself running sub-9 minute miles. Once I hit Georgetown, I had locked in my pace and was averaging 10:16 per mile.

I was feeling fantastic and passed my husband, mom, dad and grandmother standing on the steps behind the Lincoln Memorial just past mile 10, so that was even more of a boost. I do most of my long runs around Hains Point, so I wasn't as bored as a lot of people were during that section. Saw my family again around mile 15 and realized they were looking intently at another runner -- one of my dad's former employees had been running close to me the whole race and I didn't recognize him. :)

I continued to feel great and was thinking that I could totally finish in under 4:30 until I hit the bridge at mile 20. I hate that stupid bridge. It goes on forever at a slight uphill and it's very draining. Also, a lot of people around me had started walking. I was feeling ok physically but started to get beat up mentally.

Once I hit Crystal City my back started hurting pretty badly and I could tell my toe was bleeding inside my shoe. At mile 24 I let myself walk for a minute because I was feeling so beat up. It took everything I had to start running again. It was hard to tell how far away the finish was, because I had zig-zagged around so much that my watch was about a half mile ahead of the course.

I finally pushed up the final hill and finished a few minutes past my goal, but still pretty happy with my performance.
What would you do differently?:

Do more than one 20-miler, and possibly a 22-miler in training. I think a lot of my issues were mental, and it may have been easier if I had a few more under my belt.

I took a gel every 45 minutes, which worked really well. My hydration is still a little off. I usually drink every two miles or so, but I knew I would have to pee if I did that in a longer race. So I decided the morning of the marathon to only drink while taking gels, and I was pretty dehydrated by the end. So I need to figure out a balance.
Post race
Warm down:

Hobbled through the finish, got my medal and a Powerade (OMG YUM -- Powerade never tasted so good). Took me forever to get out of the finish area. Spotted my mom immediately in the Family Link-Up area. Crashed the nearest hotel to change into a dry shirt and bandage my poor bloody toe. Grabbed a cab to the Crystal City Sports Pub with my family to watch the Colts game and eat eat eat.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

I think I might have been a bit faster if I hadn't lost so much training to illness. But on the whole, I'm pretty have with how I did.

Last updated: 2009-04-01 12:00 AM
04:33:53 | 26.2 miles | 10m 27s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 0/
Keeping cool Drinking
Post race
Weight change: %
Mental exertion [1-5]
Physical exertion [1-5]
Good race?
Course challenge
Events on-time?
Lots of volunteers?
Plenty of drinks?
Post race activities:
Race evaluation [1-5]

2009-10-29 5:18 PM

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Washington, DC
Subject: Marine Corps Marathon

2009-10-30 10:25 AM
in reply to: #2487624

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Subject: RE: Marine Corps Marathon
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