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California International Marathon - Run


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Sacramento, California
United States
Sacramento Running Association
50F / 10C
Sunny
Total Time = 3h 12m 20s
Overall Rank = 619/5806
Age Group = 30-34
Age Group Rank = 35/441
Pre-race routine:

Shenanigans!

Serious guys, I would not recommend this base build/race prep to anyone.

Summary:
April - ran the Boston marathon with disappointing result due to illness. Even though I had a fever and chills, I still felt like maybe it wasn't illness but that it was me. Had some pretty low confidence going forward
May - Had surgery (unrelated to running) and was unable to run during recovery
June - Finally able to start running again, slowly adding miles
July - raced the 10K at nationals on the track with limited fitness. Had fun but not great result (as expected)
August - tried to get volume up but came into marathon specific training with much less of a base than I would have liked
Sept -Oct- Started getting into the grove and racing XC paralleling marathon plane.
Then got assaulted. Shattered nose, concussion, broken teeth...tried to keep running as much as possible through the various doctors appointments, surgery on my nose and legal type stuff.
Nov - Kept on running but with less intensity than I would have liked. XC times suffered. Training suffered but by taper time I had gotten XC time back down to where I would like it.

So, all that said, why not go ahead and try and race :)

The challenging part was that XC is not really a "time" sport so I couldn't translate times to get VDOT really and I didn't have an opportunity to run something longer like a HM to get an idea of how to pace the marathon. Additionally I wasn't really able to get any M pacing done in my long runs or any M specific workouts. So, yep, I probably wouldn't recommend this approach.

Once I had let go of the idea of perfect training I just did what made me happy and a lot of the time that meant running to the top of mountains (see attached photos.) What I may have lacked in "perfect" training I think I made up in finding the joy in "adversity."


Event warmup:

I flew in the day before the race. In the past, if I had traveled for a race I have come in several days before. I am now a fan of the day before.

I was also very, very spoiled. My aunt lives in Sacramento (my dad's sister) and her neighbor is a police officer and a runner. She volunteered to not only go pick up my packet for me but also drove me to the start line in the morning! That's a right, a police escort!!!!

Anyway, I got my escort to the start, jogged a little and then checked my stuff. I jogged a little more, did some strides and lined up behind the 3:25 pace group.
Run
  • 3h 12m 20s
  • 26.2 miles
  • 07m 20s  min/mile
Comments:

Given my training (see above) I needed to be conservative. Rather than focusing on a great time or a PR I wanted to work on things I could control and experiment a little.

1. Execute a plan
2. Try out regular shoes instead of flats
3. Negative Split
4. Fly in the day before rather than a few days

I also wanted to experiment with real food rather than gels but logistically I couldn't make it work. I supposed there is a reason such things exist.


So back to the execution part, my plan was to run between 7:25 and 7:30 splits into the half, see how I felt and if good, ratchet down the pace for the next ten miles. At 23 miles if I could, I would put the hammer down and finish strong.

Part 1: The gun went off and I felt great. I got on pace right away. I wore gloves for the first 2 miles and then ditched them. It was actually quite difficult running that "slow." I found a Chinese running team who were ticking off splits like clockwork. I tucked in with them through about mile 6. They ran a 7:45 split and I figured it was time for me to do some work myself.

I kept very disciplined and steady. Took a gel at about mile 7.5. I felt relaxed and smooth. Like I could do this all day. The course was so perfect. While a net downhill, it had lots of rolling ups and downs, so as to not grind on one particular muscle group. At mile 8ish I saw an old man wearing a white sweatsuit and tutu dancing to Taylor Swift's "Shake it Off."

Before I knew it I came into the half marathon with a split of 1:37. Exactly where I wanted to be. I took another gel and, feeling great, I began to ratchet down the pace.

Part 2: I can't remember exactly where but at some point you go under the arch marked the "middle miles" which I kind of liked. I love breaking a race up a little bit and this seemed like a great way to do it. With each mile I brought the pace down just a little bit. Somewhere around mile 14 or 15 I did run too fast (something around 6:48) and scolded myself. Going too fast on the downhills was easy to do but I know you end up paying for it later.

Not far ahead of me I saw the back of this older man's shirt that said "I'm 62 and kicking your ass!" or something like that. Above the quote was his name, Pedro. I was quite motivated by his shirt but resister the temptation to chase him down. Damn you Pedro!

At mile 16 or so, I saw a man sitting at the end of his driveway with a big dog on a leash. As I got closer I realized it was not a dog but a goat. I looked over, made eye contact with said goat and then it made a noise at me (what noise do goats make?) Something like maaaa hahahahahahaha. I believe this is a first for me.

My family was standing somewhere between mile 18 and 19 so once I passed 18 I started looking for them. Almost right at 18.5 I saw them on the righthand side of the street. My mom, dad, aunt and 3 cousins with their children were all out there holding signs. I high fived them all and was just so happy. This was the first time my dad had seen me race and I couldn't help but get a little choked up.

I came through miles 19 and 20 with a little extra joyful pep.

At mile 20 I was going to take my third gel (4th at mile 23) but I dropped it. Oops. I decided to go ahead and take my last one and then grab one of the GUs (I hate GU with a passion) off the course at the next station to take at 23. I figured if it upset my stomach, 3 miles wasn't so bad to run.

Miles 21 and 22 went by and I felt fantastic. I had gotten down around 7:10 ish. I began to really capitalize on the downhills and brought the pace into the high 6:40s or so through mile 24.

*Just an interesting note, yes, when I focused on the downhills, keeping my strides efficient, my hands near my hips and relaxed I DID indeed speed up. But without even thinking about when when I tackled the few uphills I FLEW my pace dropped into the mid to low 6s. I really am a goat. It's very interesting.

Part 3: As I had said I had sped up quite a bit through mile 24 but was just starting to suffer a little. I proably should have kept it reigned it a little longer. The thing was, I have never made it to mile 24 without feeling wrecked so I was quite happy. However, I knew the last 2.2 miles were going to be a beeeotch.

I had taken my GU (ew ew ew) and supplemented with some NUUN (yum yum yum) just to be sure I was hydrated and fed. It was starting to get a little warm with the sun right on me.

Around here I saw my friend, the old man in the white sweatsuit and tutu, dancing to Tayler Swift. I thought it was hilarious that he had taken the time to dance two places on the course.
Additionally, I was coming up on no other than Pedro!! I pulled up next to him and told him I loved his shirt. I don't know if he spoke English or not but he just smiled.

He and I ran side by side for quite some time. Around 25..5 miles he began to pull away. I let him at first, as I was struggling, but I thought better of it and reeled him back in.

We came through downtown, the crows ROARING. It was much like Boston. In fact, in my mind BETTER than Boston.

Good ol' Pedro took off and this time I couldn't catch him. Damn you Pedro!

I did everything I could to keep my pace near 7 minute miles. It was a struggle. We passed the capital building, took a left then another left back towards it.

I picked up the pace as best I could and ran through the chute for a shiny new marathon PR and a negative split!!!!!!!!

Here is my feedback on my plan and experiments:

1. Execute a plan: nearly perfect. I think I may have sped up a bit too much around miles 21-24 but overall I did quite well and was very disciplined.
2. Try out regular shoes instead of flats: I dill do this from now on. My feet suffered much less and my legs were a little more insulated. I'll keep flats for HM and less.
3. Negative Split: Hell yes!!! This felt great and a 2' split was about ideal.
4. Fly in the day before rather than a few days: I liked this too.


What would you do differently?:

1. The obvious, a more consistent base build and marathon plan.
2. Get a couple fitness check races in (10K, HM etc)
3. Not drop the gel. Whatdaya gonna do...
4. Run faster :)
Post race
Warm down:

At the finish line they handed out this terrible non-alcoholic beer. The fuck? I gathered my bag from gear drop then found a bush at the capital building and dumped it out. Yuck!

I sat on the steps and waiting for my parents. As I was sitting there another woman asked if she could sit down. The looked at me then said, "Oh my gosh I recognize you! I saw you at the half marathon point and you just flew by me. I was so impressed!" We chatted for a bit and then my parents arrived. I wished her well and my dad and I got a photo on the steps of the capital.

They drove me back to my aunts where I took a shower and then mom took me to a couple breweries. How lucky am I?????

What limited your ability to perform faster:

1. Training
2. Confidence

I can take this race and build off of it. It helped reassure myself and taught me a lot. It also really opened my eyes to how important it is to find the joy in what you are doing every day. I have attached photos from my training to show this joyous jounry.


Event comments:

AMAZING course. There are so many marathons I would like to run but I would totally do this one again.


Profile Album


Last updated: 2014-12-10 12:00 AM
Running
03:12:20 | 26.2 miles | 07m 20s  min/mile
Age Group: 35/441
Overall: 619/5806
Performance: Good
Course: The California International Marathon (CIM) is a marathon organized by runners, for runners! CIM was founded in 1983 by the Sacramento Running Association (SRA), a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. The SRA Board of Directors is comprised of runners with a combined total of 150+ years of service to the CIM. The same route SRA management created for the 1983 inaugural CIM will take you through rural countryside, then through the towns of Orangevale, Citrus Heights, Fair Oaks and Carmichael and finally, under a canopy of trees in full fall colors, into the city of Sacramento for the State Capitol finish. Even though the course has remained the same, the race has grown into a true international event. CIM has a gently rolling, point-to-point, net downhill course with well maintained streets and few turns.
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? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

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2014-12-10 6:15 PM

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Seattle
Subject: California International Marathon


2014-12-10 7:13 PM
in reply to: #5073778

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Subject: RE: California International Marathon

Don't call it a comeback....

Awesome, great report!!!

2014-12-10 8:39 PM
in reply to: #5073778

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Expert
911
500100100100100
Casa Grande
Subject: RE: California International Marathon
To negative split any marathon is an accomplishment and based upon your trials and tribulations, you obviously paced perfectly. Very impressive indeed.
Nice Job!
2014-12-11 10:03 AM
in reply to: #5073778

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Expert
3145
2000100010025
Scottsdale, AZ
Subject: RE: California International Marathon

I still cannot believe they handed out NA beer! Great report

2014-12-11 10:33 AM
in reply to: #5073778

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Master
6586
50001000500252525
Rio Rancho, NM
Subject: RE: California International Marathon

Awsome race, awesome race report!!!!!!!!

You rocked it! When I was watching your splits that morning I was thinking of the wonderful story you would tell to match those awesome numbers. And of course, you always have a good story! Thank you for sharing. Even in spite of your odd year you pulled off another great race.

2014-12-11 10:51 AM
in reply to: #5073778

Master
10208
50005000100100
Northern IL
Subject: RE: California International Marathon

Great job Adrienne! Hadn't realized this was actually PR territory for you!



2014-12-11 11:10 AM
in reply to: thebigb

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Master
7714
50002000500100100
Raleigh, NC area
Subject: RE: California International Marathon

Nicely done!  I'm so impressed, Speed Racer :-)

2014-12-11 12:41 PM
in reply to: jmkizer

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Royal(PITA)
14262
50005000200020001001002525
West Chester, Ohio
Subject: RE: California International Marathon

Well executed and managed!!  I wonder if the cross training and hiking was a bigger benefit to you than you think for those hills?  Mountain goat flying uphill!! Awesomeness!!

 

Congratulations on a big PR!!

2014-12-11 3:15 PM
in reply to: #5073778

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Expert
1244
100010010025
New York
Subject: RE: California International Marathon

As always, a fantastic race report. You went through a lot those months of training, so it's doubly impressive you blew through your PR. HUGE congrats.

CIM sounds like it was a blast, but why even hand out non-alcoholic beer? What is the point? I mean, just stick with chocolate milk then, if you can't do it right, ya know? :-P

2014-12-11 3:34 PM
in reply to: #5073778

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Pennsylvania
Subject: RE: California International Marathon

PEDRO!!!  Great race, great report, great comeback!  Old man in tutu twice and a goat once, what an interesting race.  Very, very cool that your family and your dad got to see you have a very successful day and celebrate with you.  Big congrats, my speedy friend, and hellz yeah to the new PR!

2014-12-11 9:21 PM
in reply to: #5073778

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Pro
4482
20002000100100100100252525
NJ
Subject: RE: California International Marathon
Congrats on a terrific race! Your training photos are spectacular!!! Oh, and it's pretty clear that your animal totem is the mountain goat.


2014-12-12 9:51 AM
in reply to: #5073778

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Master
2912
2000500100100100100
...at home in The ATL
Subject: RE: California International Marathon

Whoa - what a heck of a race, Salty, with or without the year you have been through! I only have one thing to say:

"maaaa hahahahahahaha!"

I am going to run up a mountain this weekend, seriously.

2014-12-12 11:11 AM
in reply to: 0

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Master
4375
20002000100100100252525
Subject: RE: California International Marathon

"It also really opened my eyes to how important it is to find the joy in what you are doing every day."

^^^ This.  Always.  Your last few months have been so great to watch.  Yes, $h!tty things happened, but you grew from them, learned from them.  Live every moment.  Thank you.

Great job on the execution; and so awesome that your family was there to see it.  Congrats.



Edited by IronOx 2014-12-12 11:12 AM
2014-12-12 1:30 PM
in reply to: IronOx

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Member
2689
2000500100252525
Denver, CO
Subject: RE: California International Marathon

Salty, I'm so proud of you!!  You came through such challenges (mild understatement!) over the summer and fall and wow, you had such a wonderful race.  Love that you think of yourself as a mountain goat and then you saw a goat who looked you in the eye and mwa hahahahaha'd at you.   Congratulations on your PR and finding the joy of the journey, as so fully captured by your pictures.  You. Are. Amazing.

2014-12-15 6:34 PM
in reply to: ChrisM

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Seattle
Subject: RE: California International Marathon

Originally posted by ChrisM

Don't call it a comeback....

Awesome, great report!!!

I been here fo years!

Thank you  

 

2014-12-15 6:36 PM
in reply to: jclarke450

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Seattle
Subject: RE: California International Marathon

Originally posted by jclarke450 To negative split any marathon is an accomplishment and based upon your trials and tribulations, you obviously paced perfectly. Very impressive indeed. Nice Job!

Thank you so much. I can't wait to get a little more fit and do it again, but faster



2014-12-16 9:53 AM
in reply to: #5073778

Subject: ...
This user's post has been ignored.
2014-12-16 11:01 AM
in reply to: Fred D

Champion
6656
500010005001002525
Subject: RE: California International Marathon
Awesome race!
2014-12-16 11:25 AM
in reply to: mndymond

Master
3869
200010005001001001002525
Overland Park, KS
Subject: RE: California International Marathon
Pfffft, 3:12 geez woman, could you run any f'ing slower. Come on, suck it up butter cup. Stop complaining about like N/A beer and get your a$$ in gear.

Seriously Adrienne you are truly an inspiration and I LOVE reading your race reports. Congratulations on a great performance.

I saw a T-shirt the other day that stated "What wall?". You could proudly wear that kind of shirt.

Oh, and I agree, I call BS on N/A beer after running a friggin' 26.2 miles. What's wrong with people!!!
2014-12-16 12:04 PM
in reply to: Asalzwed

Veteran
1677
1000500100252525
Houston, Texas
Subject: RE: California International Marathon

The joy you get from running always comes across loud and clear in your race reports -- don't ever lose that (thought I suspect that will not be an issue)!  And an unexpected PR -- icing on the cake

2014-12-18 10:44 AM
in reply to: brigby1

Seattle
Subject: RE: California International Marathon

Originally posted by brigby1

Great job Adrienne! Hadn't realized this was actually PR territory for you!

Yes! It really wasn't part of the "plan" so I was even surprised to have gotten a whole minute. Thanks for the last minute feedback, too, btw! 



2014-12-22 11:48 AM
in reply to: reecealan

Seattle
Subject: RE: California International Marathon

Originally posted by reecealan Pfffft, 3:12 geez woman, could you run any f'ing slower. Come on, suck it up butter cup. Stop complaining about like N/A beer and get your a$$ in gear. Seriously Adrienne you are truly an inspiration and I LOVE reading your race reports. Congratulations on a great performance. I saw a T-shirt the other day that stated "What wall?". You could proudly wear that kind of shirt. Oh, and I agree, I call BS on N/A beer after running a friggin' 26.2 miles. What's wrong with people!!!

 

Thanks

Seriously, there isn't a wall if you train and pace well.

This was a huge learning experience. Can't wait to apply it!

2014-12-24 12:54 PM
in reply to: Asalzwed

Master
6581
50001000500252525
Englewood, Florida
Subject: RE: California International Marathon

I don't know how I missed this. Congratulations not only on a race well run, but on a life well lived!

2014-12-24 1:43 PM
in reply to: cdban66

Seattle
Subject: RE: California International Marathon

For traditions sake!!!!

2014-12-24 2:17 PM
in reply to: Asalzwed

Master
6586
50001000500252525
Rio Rancho, NM
Subject: RE: California International Marathon

Originally posted by Asalzwed

For traditions sake!!!!

That's awesome!

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