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Tobacco Road Marathon - RunMarathon


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Cary, North Carolina
United States
FS Series
47F / 8C
Sunny
Total Time = 4h 17m 28s
Overall Rank = 596/1052
Age Group = 40-44
Age Group Rank = 34/77
Pre-race routine:

You must be THIS tall to run in this race... Ha!

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Did a lot of foam rolling and stretching the night before. Got up, had coffee and a slice of wheat bread with peanut butter.

Took shuttle to race site and met up with the other club members. We had Carol, Trish, Jason, and Roxanne, plus me and Pete, but our president was no where to be found. Turned out the buses were running late from the parking lot. The Half was supposed to start at 7:00 a.m. followed by the Full at 7:15. But the Half did not start until 7:15 because they kept waiting for buses to arrive. Apparently, there were still athletes who did not get to start with the group because of the buses running late. The Full started at 7:30 a.m.

I was cold waiting around, but I opted for my Tarahumara orange T-shirt to match Flash and Dash with shorts. I was pretty sure I'd regret running tights once I warmed up.
Event warmup:

Light stretching.
Run
  • 4h 17m 28s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 09m 50s  min/mile
Comments:

First Full Marathon evah! Hamstring issues prevented proper training in the last month; so realistically, I felt I'd fall between 4:10 and 4:20, but of course had NO idea what I was getting myself into. I decided to line up near the 4:15 pace guy and use him as a guide.

I started off with Pete and we ended up with Jason. The three of us ran together. I noticed a lady in green (Shamrock girl) kept being beside me so I started chatting with her. Pete took off ahead and I kept chatting. Then Jason took off. I told Shamrock girl that those boys took off on me and I'm going to go catch them. So I took off and kind of caught up but then gave up and just ran on my own. Next thing I knew, Shamrock girl was there again. I said, "I couldn't catch those boys." And she said, "That's ok."

We were pacing really well together at about a 9:27 avg. pace, so I decided to stay with her. I was not feeling 100%, and she was keeping me moving. After about an hour I saw the guys in line at a porta-john and I said, now is my chance to get back in front of them because I'm NOT stopping.

Shamrock girl and I continued running for another hour and the guys never did catch back up. She needed to use the porta-john and even though I didn't really need to stop, I decided to anyway so that I could continue running with her. This was about mile 15. As I waited in line, I saw the guys go by followed by the 4:15 pace leader. After I used the porta-john, Shamrock girl was taking too long getting ready to go again, so I left without her thinking I could catch the 4:15 group.

I ran alone for awhile with the 4:15 guy in sight, but for some reason he kept getting farther and farther away! I could not catch up. I expected Shamrock girl to appear beside me again, but she never did.

I made it to the infamous 20 mile mark, not feeling great, but still ok. At 21 miles, I started to fade fast. I stopped at a water stop and downed 2 or 3 cups of water then continued with a short burst of energy. Five miles to go... common pick it up! As I picked up speed, I got a glimpse of Pete. He had slowed and I was quickly gaining on him.

He heard me coming up fast and told me to go for it. I said, "I can't, I'm done." He said, "Me too." At this point I knew we were going to finish the race together because neither of us could take off ahead and we are both too stubborn to walk in the other's presence. We had slowed to an 11 min mile.

Four miles to go, ughhh... three miles to go. I said, "We're going to make it without walking." Two miles to go. OMG, every fiber of my being hurts. I want to stop and walk. I can't do that, I just can't. If I walk, I will not be able to run again. These were the HARDEST two miles of my life, and it seemed it was NEVER going to end. I thought my Garmin broke. It would say 25.5, then what seemed like 10 min later it would say 25.6. UGHHH! I kept saying, "I'm done, I'm done," as I kept on running. My body felt like it was going to crack and fall apart. "I don't ever want to do this again," as I kept on running. "Where is that finish line? I'm done." ... as I kept on running.

FINALLY, there was the finish line. Last time Pete and I finished a race together, I sprinted ahead so that my finish time would be ahead of his. This time I would NOT be sprinting in. But there was a decline to the finish line so I did tell him to pick up the pace and we sailed down the chute.

I heard names being called. In my mind, I thought that meant there would be two chip mats; one for names and one for finish time. So I FLEW over the mat and kept right on going thinking there was a second chip mat. Next thing I knew, someone was handing me a medal and I was like, "That's it? That was the finish line?" Indeed it was, THANK GOODNESS!

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What would you do differently?:

I had 3 servings on Infinit and a Nuun in my bottles. I felt very confident in my nutrition plan, and had NO concern that I would have muscle cramps. I supplemented my Infinit with grabbing water at most of the water stops. I ran the entire race. I cannot think of anything I regret or would have done differently. I only feel that I could have trained harder in the last month before the race. I do believe I was capable of a better finish time, but this leaves room for a PR next time.
Post race
Warm down:

There are no words to describe how my body felt at the point. I guess only other marathoners can relate, because there is no way to put that feeling into words. Pete said it was like his thighs were lead and his calves were noodles. The noodley calves could not support the lead thighs and we kept stumbbling around off balance as if drunk.

Pete said to keep walking. I wanted to sit down, but he said no. I kept saying, "I don't know what to do." I knew I should walk, but I couldn't walk. I wanted to sit, but knew I should not. Every fiber of my being hurt. Should I stretch? I can't bend over to stretch. This really strange feeling lasted several minutes before it started to subside.
But getting that finisher's medal made it all worth it!

We found Jason and Trish at the finish. James and Carol did the half and did not stay around after since it would be a long wait. I really wanted to be at the finish chute when Shamrock girl and Roxanne came in. Shamrock girl finished in 4:32:35, so had I stayed with her I may have lost 14 min. We ended up having to leave before Roxanne got in because we still had to get a shuttle back to hotel and get checked out.

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Later we pondered the question of, which is harder - Half Iron or Marathon? We both agreed the Marathon was harder, hands down. I never felt pain like that before, not even during a Half Iron. I never wanted to quit a Half Iron. And I never said, "I don't ever want to do this again" after a Half Iron.

Next question, which is harder - all out 5K or Marathon? Um... this was tougher to decide. 5K - Hurt like hell, but had more to do with exploding lungs. Marathon - Hurt like hell, but had more to do with exploding muscles. 5k - I want to stop and walk. Marathon - I want to stop and walk. 5K - I don't ever want to do this again. Marathon - I don't ever want to do this again. 5K - I'm going to die. Marathon - I'm going to die. Hmmm... I guess a marathon is harder mainly because the pain lasts SO MUCH LONGER!

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Poor training during last weeks before race.


Profile Album


Last updated: 2011-03-02 12:00 AM
Running
04:17:28 | 26.2 miles | 09m 50s  min/mile
Age Group: 34/77
Overall: 596/1052
Performance: Good
Course: Mostly flat with some gentle inclines. About 18 miles of hard packed dirt trail; the rest was on road.
Keeping cool Average Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 3
Good race? Yes
Evaluation
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? No
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

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2011-03-21 8:29 AM

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Expert
1118
1000100
, North Carolina
Subject: Tobacco Road Marathon


2011-03-21 9:44 AM
in reply to: #3406387

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Veteran
205
100100
Fayetteville, NC
Subject: RE: Tobacco Road Marathon

I agree that marathon's are painful.  I have run 5 marathons and each one of them hurt.  My marthons hurt even more than my Ironman races.  But that is probably just because I have yet to finish an Ironman without walking some of the marathon. 

Oh, and my vote is that a marathon is much worse than a 5k.  I agree that 5k's are very painful.  But that pain goes away as soon as you cross the finish line.  The marathon pain gets much worse when you cross and try to walk.  And the muscle soreness lasts for days.  How are you doing with stairs today?

Congratulations on a great finish.  Sorry we didn't stick around for your finish.

 

2011-03-21 10:57 AM
in reply to: #3406554

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Expert
1118
1000100
, North Carolina
Subject: RE: Tobacco Road Marathon
Running_in_NC - 2011-03-21 10:44 AM I agree that marathon's are painful.  I have run 5 marathons and each one of them hurt.  My marthons hurt even more than my Ironman races.  But that is probably just because I have yet to finish an Ironman without walking some of the marathon. 

Oh, and my vote is that a marathon is much worse than a 5k.  I agree that 5k's are very painful.  But that pain goes away as soon as you cross the finish line.  The marathon pain gets much worse when you cross and try to walk.  And the muscle soreness lasts for days.  How are you doing with stairs today?

Congratulations on a great finish.  Sorry we didn't stick around for your finish.

Thanks!  Yeah, you're right about 5K pain being over right way while marathon pain last... well, I don't know how long it last. I'm only on first day after race; will have to wait to see how many days it takes to feel normal again!

Luckily, I don't have any stairs.  But yesterday I couldn't even step up onto the 6 in curb!  Oh, thank God we did not stop to walk during that race or all of that pain would have set in and we NEVER would have been able to run again.

No worries on not staying.  James had already told me he likely would not.  We really didn't expect ya'll to.  It was a long day and indeed chilly out there.  And we were hours behind you.

But I felt REALLY bad about missing Roxanne. We kept watching and watching the chute, then wondered if we missed her somehow.  But we had to get checked out of our hotel, so we left to get a shuttle.  Turned out she finished shortly thereafter.

That was the strangest pain I ever felt in relation to training/racing.  Can't wait to do it again!

2011-03-21 11:16 AM
in reply to: #3406387

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New user
339
10010010025
Salisbury
Subject: RE: Tobacco Road Marathon

Wow great race report, very inspiring ...It was nice meeting you guys after the race.

It is always the last 6...I remember seeing you and your orange kicks at mile 19 or so and you looked strong!

2011-03-21 1:21 PM
in reply to: #3406387

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Extreme Veteran
413
100100100100
Clayton/Raleigh, North Carolina
Subject: RE: Tobacco Road Marathon
Great job! Way to keep at it and not walk even when every part of you wanted to! I hope you recovery is quick and not too painful!
2011-03-21 2:36 PM
in reply to: #3406387

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Champion
7454
500020001001001001002525
Placitas, New Mexico
Subject: RE: Tobacco Road Marathon
Good job!  You did far better on your first than I did (I walked much of the last 6 miles). 


2011-03-21 3:16 PM
in reply to: #3406387

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Veteran
271
1001002525
Greensboro,NC
Subject: RE: Tobacco Road Marathon
Good to see you on the trail. You did awesome. My report is coming.

John
2011-03-25 5:21 AM
in reply to: #3406387

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Extreme Veteran
423
100100100100
Frederick, Maryland
Subject: RE: Tobacco Road Marathon
Nice report as usual. Well, you know my vote on marathon vs Half Iron -> for me, Half Iron is tougher because I haven't quite dialed in the run after the bike for that distance (trying to this year). But, marathon (and beyond) is all about running. Way to stick with it mentally even though your body says to stop! And the 50K is next :-)
2011-03-25 7:45 AM
in reply to: #3406387

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Expert
1394
1000100100100252525
Wilmington, NC
Subject: RE: Tobacco Road Marathon

Nice job out there Maria. Considering the trying times in the last few weeks leading up to the race, you did awesome.

Take care of those hurting parts and get healthy so you can start your assault on FL.

2011-03-26 8:43 PM
in reply to: #3406387

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Expert
1203
1000100100
Subject: RE: Tobacco Road Marathon
Great race report and congrats on finishing your first.  Funny how after reading that and all of the pain and suffering you went through it makes me want to do one and you want to do another. 
2011-03-27 7:42 AM
in reply to: #3406387

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Master
1367
10001001001002525
Dirt Road
Subject: RE: Tobacco Road Marathon
Congratulations on your first. I could feel your pain when you thought your Garmin had broke. Great RR.


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