Monday, January 20, 2014

Finally... A race report... Baton Rouge Marathon

I finally have a race report for my new blog. I love that the first report will be favorable as well. We headed to Baton Rouge for the holiday weekend for me to do the full and Stewart to do the half. I was very excited to have Stewart share this weekend with me. This whole racing scene and that part of my life is still kind of a mystery to him. Nothing I wanted more than for him to be there and began to see what this is all about. I also will not lie, we are in that honeymoon stage where we can't get enough of each other so another road trip was great. I was very excited that he was going to do his very first half

We all know, I am not a big fan of the marathon and I have only done 3 open marathons in my running. Not counting 50k's or ironmen. During The race yesterday, I figured why I was not such a fan.  Anyway, I disgress.  I originally trained for a trail marathon back in Oct that didn't happen. I felt very fit so I thought, why not?? Do a road marathon and try to qualify for Boston.  Training was going great and then travel and the holidays hit and I started missing or changing a lot of runs.  4 weeks ago, I had a great 22 miler and felt confident. I still had my peak week coming before I started taper. My peak week happened while in Corado and I ran 3 times and nothing over 8 miles. I figured I could catch up the next week.  Came back to do my long run combined with the herbs half marathon. It was cold and rainy, I did the half and ran straight to the car- no extra miles. As I went Into this race, I knew I hadn't ran long in 4 weeks. I had a 13.1 and then everything was about 8 miles. I did know I had 3 things going for me.  I had years of endurance and a ton built up this summer, all my short stuff was done fast so I knew I had really good general fitness, and I knew I had  determination and a strong mental game. I would need all 3 to get this BQ.  I also knew that even though 3:45 was my qualifying time, with this crazy new registration - I needed a buffer.

The day was beautiful and the course was beautiful. I pretty much cruised through the first 16 miles, feeling great and chatting to others. Things started to get a little harder but I knew I just needed to stay focused, make it to 20 and then start the countdown.  I was extremely happy to see 20. The next 2 weren't too bad. The last 4 were hell.  I reminded myself how lucky I was that I was out here running and doing something I loved. I reminded myself often how grateful I was that I had this ability. I also repeatedly told myself how strong I was. My pace began to drop as the effort increased but I was happy to see that I was still running a 3:45 pace so I was safe. The math was going through my head   There was nothing more that I wanted then was to stop. Nothing more I wanted to see the finish line. I began to count how many laps this would be on the track. I wasn't talking, I wasn't smiling, I was focused. I told myself do this and u can run whatever at Boston, relax and have a good time. I realized then why I didn't like the marathon- it is hard - the focus it takes- the will to push when u feel like shit cuz if u slow down u could blow all the work u did the first 22 miles. I was never so happy to see mile 25. I knew I could do anything for a mile and I would soon start feeling the finish line adrenaline.  I thought of my past 2 marathons, my first which was a pure mess, my second which I did get a BQ of 3:47 - needed 3:50 at the time which I hated and this one which I maybe kind of enjoyed.   I saw the finish line and was thrilled to be able to stop running. Thrilled to have a 3:39 which gave me over a 5 minute buffet so I knew I could get in Boston and I got to see Stewart and see how his experience went

He did well and really enjoyed it. Something that made me extremely happy. He was already talking about the next one 😊 and actually training. If my training slacked, his really did. He ran twice in the last month. We spent the day laying in the grass enjoying the beautiful weather and then much eating and drinking followed. A perfect day and weekend.

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