Saturday, August 09, 2008

It was a good day

Oh, oh! The competition looks very fast today and flaunting country colors too!
That was pretty well the only time I saw him again until the finish. Mr Judson Cake was going for the course record of 25:13 and just missed it by a dozen seconds or so, all alone in the lead with nobody in sight. Well what would you expect from a 2:23 marathoner? Amazing!
About 9 minutes later this sorry runner strolled across the line in a respectable (for him) time of 34:14. My time for this race last year was 34:53 so I'm taking this as a victory. Going into it I had no specific time goal but was hoping to just run hard and show up somewhere below 35 minutes.The race itself went well despite being a bundle of nerves beforehand with the extreme lack of racing in my recent log. After signing in one hour before the start in Calais, Maine(due to security requirements) I then drove back across the border and parked to avoid lineup problems after the race. The 1 mile walk back served as an initial warm up but I then got into race clothes (including my brand new never worn Mizunos) and did a perfunctory jog, stretch, jog and a few lazy strides before it was time to line up.

I settled in several rows back behind my running friends Jon and Ozzie who I know to be faster than me. Sure enough after the start they slowly pulled away and were out of sight by the 1/2 mile with all the twists and turns on the route which crosses into Canada at mile 0.75, runs along the river up to the Milltown border before coming back into the US at mile 2.75. Our race numbers and pre-clearance served as our passports today and the border guards simply watched as we flew/trotted/jogged by (I think I was in the middle trotting group). So without friends to run with I tried the next best thing, the lead woman who I just happened to know. And she even said hello and wanted to talk! "Sorry", I gasped, "No talking!" The other guy trying to keep up with her laughed and that was the end of our conversation as we rolled along for the first mile in 6:20. She then slowly pulled away with the other guy in tow finishing about 1 minute ahead of me.

The next hilly mile came back in 6:57 as I was passed momentarily by leading lady #2. This was the 1st and only time since the starting rush that I had been chick'd or guy'd so I stuck with her and started my heavy breathing routine. Within a mile, she'd had enough of all my gasping and fell back out of earshot for the remainder of the race. The next mile came in at 6:57 followed by one long tough hilly mile in 7:09 where I worked hard on my breathing and effort. A few times my effort got ahead of what air I could suck in and I found myself almost hyperventilating until I got the effort and counting steps and breaths back under control. The final mile of the race is mostly downhill with a flat finishing straight of about 500m. The Garmin clocked this mile as 6:30 but there was another 20 seconds before I hit the finish line and stopped my watch. Glad that's over but it wasn't as bad as I'd feared, maybe even a little bit fun. What's next Mike?

Here is the elevation profile in green and speed in blue. Nice hill eh?

And there are a whole bunch of race pictures here which were taken by my friend and local coach Verne. Verne has helped me with my running over the years and has always been there with lots of guidance and encouragement, especially with my 1st marathon in 1998.

Aug 8 - Fri
Training: 6 miles with about 8x100m strides to wake up the legs (8:24 pace) 7/10
Health: legs ok but mentally tired lately 6/10
Stretching: icing and stretching

Aug 9 - Sat
Training: 5 mile race in 34:14; short w/up & cool down and long walk to and from; placed in 2nd age group (6:46 pace) 8/10
Health: legs good and feeling much better 7/10
Stretching: icing and stretching planned!

That made for a total of 57 miles for the week. It should'a been 60 but I cut out a few miles for the race in a mini-taper of sorts and it was worth it. I'm happy with how things are going, the hams especially are much better lately and there are very few other aches or pains. Big run planned in the morning with Andrew and the gang which should make short work of me. Have a nice week!


Jamie Anderson said...

Congrats on the race! Looks like a pretty good hill there just before 3.5 miles. Well done. Have fun tomorrow.

Thomas said...

I love the competing shorts photo! An instant classic!

Oh, and not a bad race either.

UMaine Cooperative Extension said...

Hey Mike - well done! Andrew didn't run?

I won't even touch the 'breathing heavy routine' with leading lady #2. Though I did hear some bad 70's music in the background.

Grellan said...

Well done on the race Mike and congrats on the significant improvement over last year despite not having raced recently. That hill looks like a killer.

Chrispy said...

Great race report and nice time :)

Unknown said...

Nice race, Mike!

DawnB said...

congratulations Mike on a nice race you did great!!

Anonymous said...