Monday, November 19, 2007

The Long Report - 0ne Day Beyond

Well a quick check on what I posted yesterday, my knee seems to be better this morning thanks to alot of ice and ibuprofin. More ice today at noon I think and ibuprofin.

As for photos, I still don't have them downloaded yet and the cable to get that done must be in the bedroom and I'm not going to wake Bonnie again. I promise later today.

Start Line: I talked with a couple of folks from the Edmond Running Club (Joanne and Maurice) that were running the full that I knew would be up in front of me.I lined up with the 5:00 pace group for the start and at 8:00 sharp.

Mile 1 - 11:15
The start of the race was great. They let the elite runners go out about 2 minutes ahead of us, then it was our time...."Runners Set"......then the shotgun blast and we were off. I was able to run with the 5:00 hour pace group with real ease over this first mile. We ran over a bridge spanning the Arkansas River, so that was the first of many hills for the day, and was probably one of the smaller hills. After the bridge we ran west for a ways then turned north on a part of "old Route 66" the historic American highway, the namesake of the race, so we can say that we "Kicked it on Route 66" as our finishers shirts would later indicate. Toward the end of Mile 1 my bladder made it's one and only stop of the race, throwing me about 30 seconds behind the pace group.

Mile 2 - 12:19
Mile 2 started near the center of the second bridge that I believe was the Southwest Blvd Bridge, we were headed east back over the Arkansas River and would be turning right onto Riverside Drive. Riverside Drive is the long stretch of the race that will take us all the way to just past Mile 11. Mile 2 was catch up time to get back with the 5:00 pace group. My pace had fallen to around 11:40 if my memory serves me right. But try as I may I couldn't catch those guys again. I would keep them in sight up to mile 15 though. Still running strong.

Mile 3 - 11:47
During Mile 3 we completed a loop that took us back under the first bridge that we had run over. The significance here was that I got under that bridge before the half and quarter marathoners took off at 9:00 AM. Actually I was hoping to maybe see Bonnie but it was not to be. Again continuing to run strong. I was running between water stations and not feeling any discomfort at all. I started to notice bronze looking statues of wild animals in the grassy way between us and the river that was now on our right. I wish I had a portable camera to take photos of them as I noticed several other people doing. I remember deer, big horn sheep, bears, a seal, antelope, and others that apparently escape my still tired memory. I remember passing the turn around point for the quarter marathoners (Bonnie) during Mile 3 and saying a prayer for her and the other racers in that group.

Mile 4 - 11:46
Somewhere in Mile 4 I think it was we saw a woman standing in a large picture window with a very large cat. She had the cat standing on all fours and was waving with its forepaws to all the runners as we went by. A stranger sight indeed. There were also a fair number of spectators along this part of the course and near the water stations. Still keeping up a consistent pace to this point.

Mile 5 - 11:57

Mile 6 - 11:42

Mile 7 - 11:54

Mile 8 - 12:03
Somewhere during this mile I had a couple of guys catch up with and we leapfrogged for a bit then ran together until we were in Mile 11 crossing the bridge over the Arkansas River again. One had run many marathons and had heart surgery (stents) and the other...this was his first marathon. I asked them what time they were shooting for and the older gentleman said 5 to 5:30. The younger guy said he was shooting for 5, but he was looking at 5 PM. We got a good laugh from that. They were very complimentary of me when they learned of my quadruple bypass surgery 2 years ago.
Mile 9 - 11:44
I think it was during Mile 9 that I saw the marathon leaders coming back in from the turn around point. They looked awesome.
Mile 10 - 11:58

Mile 11 - 11:54
Once again we crossed the Arkansas River as we would near the turn around point for the race. I saw Maurice, Casie, and Joanne all running strong but going the other direction on the bridge. I'm glad I saw them it gave me a boost to keep going. The funny thing about seeing the runners ahead of me coming back in it seemed to pump me up some to run strong. For a while I wasn't just running with those around me at or near the same pace I was doing.
Mile 12 - 11:56

Mile 13 - 11:40
When I crossed the halfway point, my Garmin indicated 2:34:52, ahead of my pace that I did in the Lewis and Clark Marathon in September by about 2 or 3 minutes. Still running and feeling pretty strong at this point. I knew that I wouldn't be coming in with the 5:00 hour group so was now focusing on a 5:15 pace and this seemed very "doable" at the time. I didn't realize at the time that this was to be my last sub-12 minute mile.

Mile 14 - 12:23
Things slid a bit here with the pace, I think I was now moving into the 11:50ish area for a race pace. I was getting a little tired but still felt strong overall.

Mile 15 - 12:04
This mile felt like a bit of a struggle at times. By now we were back on Riverside Drive again going north this time. I was again running alone, chasing shorts in the distance, passing some, watching others pull further away. When the relay runners would zoom by it played havoc with my mind, at first can these people be so fast so far into the race...the answer...they were alot fresher than we were.

Mile 16 - 12:02

Mile 17 - 13:03
The first 13 minute mile that I would do in the race, but definitely not the last. I could see the 5:15 pace passing me by even though there was no 5:15 pace group for this race. I made a vow to stay close to the 12:00 minute/mile pace that was needed for that though.

Mile 18 - 13:04
I'm not sure if it has any real significance or not but I was able to "clump" my times all pretty close together....running earlier in the 11:40's, then the 12:05 range, and now low 13's. Another significance of starting mile 18 was that Bonnie was supposed to try and meet me near the 18.5 mark where Riverside Drive intersected 61st Street. Well 61st came and went and no Bonnie. The next big intersection also went by, and I'm getting a bit worried about her race now...did she finish...was she hurt....but she made contact with me between Miles 21 and 22 and said she was at 61st street asking where I was and I told her...she said oops, it took her longer than she thought to get out of our hotel after showering and changing so she missed me, but I assured her that was ok and I was just glad to hear from her. She would meet me at the finish. Finally I have started to throw in some additional walk breaks in between the water stations, but I'm still running considerably more than walking.

Mile 19 - 13:22
5:15 was now definitely slipping away. I was beginning to think about the hills to come and hoped that I could maintain some sembleance of pace for them. During this mile we ran past a belly dancer providing entertainment but to be honest I can't even remember what she had on as we went by.

Mile 20 - 13:38
Each mile is getting to be more and more of a struggle now. I'm having to talk to myself mentally to keep keep running when my body wanted to walk. I walked quite a bit this mile it seemed. The end of Mile 20 took us onto Peoria Avenue. We had been on Peoria 3 weeks ago for the Tulsa Run 15K race, so it was familar ground for me. There were again crowds of people out to cheer us along. It always felt good when someone would pay attention to the bibs and call out your name...Run Randy Run....well ok Forrest Gump I'm not.

Mile 21 - 13:54
Definitely doing some walking here. This mile saw the first of the hills, though the Peoria incline was very gentle compared to what was to come...the "Hills from Hell".....

Mile 22 - 13:52
This mile was spent on Woodward Blvd and Owasso Place and these people all must have problems during ice storms. The fun part of this mile was running thru all the colored leaves on the street. Fall has made it to Oklahoma and the leaves are painting the area in a beautiful array of Thanksgiving colors. I walked up most of the hills starting in this area. I thought I had seen the worst of them, but ohhh nooooo.....

Mile 23 - 14:06
We crossed over Peoria doing a weave up a hill that would make you think once you got to the top you had to be King or Queen for the moment, you wanted to stop and do a Rocky Balboa victory dance with arms raised...but there was no time...there were more hills yet to come...but this one indeed proved to be the worst of the group.

Mile 24 - No data
The tree coverage in this area was still pretty thick and for the first time ever my Garmin registered only limited data showing that I only went 483 feet for this Lap or mile. My Garmin stayed on track though overall for the chip time that I knew I was running, so it was strange to see this when I had finished. This mile started with a climb for maybe a quarter mile up to Utica Avenue, then a downward turn, with a rolling hill at the bottom then another climb up towards 15th Street.

Mile 25 - 14:03
It's funny, at Mile 25 we passed the Italian restaurant where we had eaten the night before, but I was sooooooo focused on trying now to stay under 5:30 I never saw it. I knew that 5:30 was going to be a battle...there were times that my mind would say..."just slack off you aren't going to make it any way"...that had to be the left side....then the right brain would kick in and say " don't back off you can still do it...we have some kick left, show them you are capable". I think I failed to mention earlier that I was altermating talking to God and talking with those Nigerians and Kenyans that often I find running with me as I zone out or hit a runners high....I was being pulled along by fierce competitors and a wonderful Higher Power, I decided I could do it. 15th Street had one last hill to climb and then it was down hill to the turn onto Boston I think it was. As we turned to Boston I could hear the finish line, basically 2 turns away. I was still struggling with the 5:30 pace though.

Mile 26 - 13:27
One more turn, the finish line could definitely be heard, the streets were somewhat lined with spectators again, many that had finished the course ahead of us cheering us along. I turned the corner and could see the finish line, the same chute that we had run thru over 5 hours ago. The clock was ticking it's red numbers at us, the seconds were winking by as we got closer. Still short of the mat I could see the blink of 5:30:00 and kind of lost it a bit thinking I had failed. I hit the mat at 5:30:39, but the chip time was 5:29:32. My Garmin read 5:29:34, close enough for government work and since I don't consider myself one of the elite that has to follow gun time, I give myself credit for finishing under 5:30...just barely.

At the finish line
I struggled to the lady that would give me my finisher's medal, then was a bit confused as to who took our chips and she pointed me in the right direction. Some guy in a red t-shirt shook my hand and wanted to know if I needed to sit down...I tolk him no I needed to walk for a bit. I struggled to put my foot up on the bar they had for the chip removers and thankfully they had a higher bar for us to lean on. Then someone gave me one of the thin space blankets, but I was hot and didn't feel like I would cool down anytime soon so I soon lost that. But before I took it off I went to the tables where they were giving out nice finishers shirts and asked for a Large. The man behind the table was told by someone else that these shirts were only for those that finished the full marathon. I looked at him and said I may not have alot of strength left but I would fight him for the shirt....I then moved the space blanket to let him see my bib and he quickly apologized and I got my shirt. He said that he was confused by the green ribbon attached to my medal. I got a "My First Marathon" medal since it was my first marathon in Oklahoma, there wasn't that kind of option in Missouri and another race buddy said that I should take it if they offered it to me. The lady that gave it had no problem with it.

Overall I feel good. This morning my knee doesn't hurt, I'll exercise it some today, walking but no running and icing when I can. What a taper run for we come....!!!!!!!!!!!


Wes said...

Nice job, Randy! You are a marathon maniac :-) Soon to be official! I think, maybe, you should of just collapsed on that guy at the t-shirt stand and crushed him. Full marathon, indeed! LOL....

Marcy said...

You are freekin amazing Randy!!! YOu maniac!!! ;D ;D ;D ;D Holy Moses!!

Lisa - Slow & Steady said...

Way to go!!

And it's good that your knee seems better.

Darrell said...

Great job and great report, Randy. I'll guess I'll be considering another one for my Arkansas marathon. Thanks for the heads up on the hills.

Darrell said...

Oops, make that Oklahoma.

Joe said...

Great race and great report, Randy. Mega congratulations on persevering through those last, hard miles.

Way to go!!

scott keeps running said...

way to knock off the time from the last one! mucho congrats randy!

thanks for the report. :)

runliarun said...

I liked your mile 25, switching back and forth between the left and right brain, between the Nigerians and God...