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Quintiles Wrightsville Beach Marathon - RunMarathon

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Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina
United States
SETUP Events
62F / 17C
Total Time = 2h 54m 25s
Overall Rank = 4/462
Age Group = 35-39
Age Group Rank = 0/
Pre-race routine:

Woke up at 4AM, ate toast, oatmeal, and half a marathon bar. Also drank several glasses of water. Then, crawled back into bed and just rested. After another hour, got up, took a shower, got ready, and headed down to meet qrkid, who offered to drive up to the race.
Event warmup:

Darren and I arrived about 50 mins before the race started. We went on a short and easy run, but I let him go so he could properly warm up.

Weather was cool, misty, and foggy. It actually wasn't so bad. I continued to warm up and stretched while everyone lined up.
  • 2h 54m 25s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 06m 40s  min/mile

First marathon!!

Goals were to make sure I paced myself and finished strong, qualify for Boston, and have fun!

The RD counted down, and we were off!

Miles 1 - 10
At the race start, it was very hard to hold back and run your own race. I'm used to starting out fast, with the leaders, and seeing them pull away was tough. I kept reminding myself that I was running the full marathon. The half folks were going out much faster we were

  • At mile 3, we hit the bridges and I forced myself to slow down. I was trying to keep my HR down for now. I was a little dismayed to see I ran a 6:45, but then just figured I had 23 more miles to make it up. I did make a conscious effort to speed it up just a little after that and just settled into cruise control.

    At mile 4 (or so), ran by the family rally spot, but since the race started 5 mins early, my family hadn't made it out yet. It was a little disappointing, but I just refocused on running and kept going.

    Shortly thereafter, I looked down to see if it was time to take my gel yet and I realized I was 5 minutes late. No worries. So, at 35 mins, I took my first gel. I figured I'd be ok taking it every 35, rather than every 30.

    At mile 10, I felt great. Everything I've read said that would be the case. I was a little behind pace at this time. No need to panic, though, this race was under control. I took my second gel, along with some water, and kept at it.

    Miles 10 - 20
    After passing the 10 mile mark, I started to hit every water stop. I only really got a sip or two, but it was enough to cool me down. The weather was humid and I could really see some ppl struggling. I grabbed two more Hammer gels and just carried them as I ran. Putting them in my pocket would have burnt too much energy.

    Ran through the Landfall neighborhood and enjoyed the sights. The area was beautiful. At the end of the neighborhood, mile 11, you had to cross the timing mat. I made sure I heard the beep. That was music to my ears.

    At mile 13, there was a sign that said "mile 14 ahead". Well, at this time, I keep running and come upon a "mile 17" sign. WTF?!!! Did I do the wrong way?! I backtracked and ran into the marathoners behind me. I yelled at them if this was the right way. They shrugged, then one said yes. I turned back around and kept running. I lost a good 15 seconds b/c I thought I was lost. GRR! A quarter mile down the road, at mile 14.25 on my garmin, I saw the 14 mile marker. I was really pissed about this, but carried on. At this time, I started to think about the "wall". I wanted to make sure I took a gel soon so I'd have energy once i got here. The wall really was on my mind. I didn't want to hit it and have all those months of training go down the drain...I took a gel and water, and figured I'd find out soon enough if I had what it took to scale it...

    At mile 18 I came across a marathoner that had the yellow arm band we were required to wear after going the marathon loop. Once he saw the 18 mile mark, he just slowed down...In my opinion, this guy was mentally beating himself...he hit the wall at EXACTLY the point the books say you will, which are miles 18-20. I was convinced he mentally hit the wall and that probably cost him a good race.

    I still felt great, was holding my pace, and passed another marathoner. This guy was obviously a triathlete. I wished him well as I passed him, and kept going.

    At mile 20, I couldn't believe I felt as good as I did...I was ecstatic! I smacked the 20 mile marker with my hand as i passed it, then kept on going. I think I even had a little pep in my step. I was big time in Runner's High land. :)

    Miles 20 - 26.2
    I felt so good, I decided to pick it up just a little. I was topped off with another gel, I had water, legs felt good, the crowd was doesn't get any better than that. Everyone kept yelling out to the marathoners and how awesome it was to run like that. It kind of made you feel like a rock star, to be honest with you. I just gave thumbs up to everyone and kept going.

    Exited Landfall again at mile 21, once again crossing the timing mat. BEEP! Oh yeah! I'm pumped!

    At mile 23, just as you're entering the final stretch, the crowds gathered there was just exciting! I inadvertently picked it up, but I could tell I was dangerously low on fuel reserves. I also caught my first glimpse of the OA leader. D00d looked strong and in control. He was about 15 minutes ahead of me. Nice job, bro! Get it done!

    At mile 24, there was a turn around and I got to see how far back the next guys were from me. Crap! 30 seconds! I knew I was 4OA at this time, b/c the crowds were telling me so. I really wasn't here to race anyone, but I didn't want to get passed in the last miles of the race.

    I really started to slow down at that point. I was tired, legs, ankles, feet, and IT bands were complaining, and I was hot. At another turn around, I saw the 5OA guy was now only 20 seconds behind with 1.5 to go! Crap! He's making a move!

    No matter what I did, I just didn't have it in me to speed up any faster than 7min/mi. I decided that I would just forget about placement and try to finish. Then I decided, "screw that", I'm not letting him pass me.

    The next two miles were the longest two miles of the entire marathon...boy, they hurt. I was running on fumes and the legs just felt like two wooden logs.

    I started to get a little emotional after the 25 mile mark. Almost the same kind of emotional as when I was in the last mile of Ironman...Almost done! Just a little bit more to go!

    I picked up the pace and sprinted down the final road to the end. I could see the crowds, hear the music, and see the celebration. It was a grand sight! I crossed the finish, got my medal, saw my family and friends, and tried my best to walk the previous 26.2 miles off. :)

    I met the 5OA after the race and he said he thought he had me, until the end, when I pulled away. Nice guy. It was cool to meet him after the race.

    What would you do differently?:

    Not much, except be a little more consistent with my per mile pace. I kept speeding up or slowing down to hit my 6:30 goal pace.
    Post race
    Warm down:

    Walked around, got a massage, and then ate pizza, water, coke, and bananas.

    What limited your ability to perform faster:

    I would say the weather was just a little warmer than I would have liked it...

    Event comments:

    Very good race. SETUP Events is a class act and provided plenty of entertainment and food/beverages for everyone.

    Profile Album

    Last updated: 2011-11-22 12:00 AM
    02:54:25 | 26.2 miles | 06m 40s  min/mile
    Age Group: 0/
    Overall: 4/462
    Performance: Good
    Course: Course was mostly flat. During the 3rd mile, you hit the bridges, which offers a bit of elevation change. The mile markers were accurate through the first half, then were suddenly off by more than a tenth of a mile after that. It was strange.
    Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
    Post race
    Weight change: %
    Overall: Good
    Mental exertion [1-5] 5
    Physical exertion [1-5] 5
    Good race? Yes
    Course challenge Just right
    Organized? Yes
    Events on-time? Yes
    Lots of volunteers? Yes
    Plenty of drinks? Yes
    Post race activities: Good
    Race evaluation [1-5] 5

    2012-03-19 10:06 AM

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    Whispering Pines, North Carolina
    Subject: Quintiles Wrightsville Beach Marathon

    2012-03-19 2:32 PM
    in reply to: #4102723

    User image

    Atlanta, Georgia
    Bronze member
    Subject: RE: Quintiles Wrightsville Beach Marathon
    Crazy to think it was your first marathon...You're strong as all get out!

    Great RR and pics..

    See you at B2B!
    2012-03-19 2:55 PM
    in reply to: #4102723

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    University Park, MD
    Subject: RE: Quintiles Wrightsville Beach Marathon
    Wow! An outstanding debut.
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