Back 2 Back BQs... Race Plan? Out the door!
So the other day when I said I needed to take this weekend a little easier (~3:50-4:00) because of the 50-miler next weekend, who actually believed I would follow that plan??? Yeah, nobody? You're know me better than I do. When I got to the start today I wasn't feeling well (starting to get a cold), I was tired, and I was in no mood to run a mile let alone 26. So what did I do? Jumped behind ahead of a pack of women and hooked onto a fast looking chick and hoped to get it over with ASAP. Well I didn't realize just how ASAP she would be taking this finishing thing. I noticed a few 7:30 and 7:20 miles (esp when she saw me behind her... hehe) and knew I couldn't sustain that pace. After 10 I scaled it back a little and ended the marathon at 3:34:48! That's the first time I've ever done a BQ time 2 weekends in a row!!! Usually if I PR my legs are dead the next weekend and I struggle to make a sub 4 hour.
OR Runners: The women in Oregon are flipping fast! That or the "flat" course advertised did a good job at pulling in some fast women looking for a PR or.. hell, an Olympic qualifying time! When I was up with the "fast chick" mentioned above-- who BTW looked like she should be a fitness model-- I thought our 7:40 pace was pretty solid.. wrong. In a race of prob 150 women there were another 8 in front of us! In most races that small, a pace we were keeping would have us well in the lead.
T-Shirts: I liked that we weren't required to get one of the race t-shirts. If you wanted one you needed to pay $20 extra dollars. I have so many, it was nice to be given the choice... esp once I saw them. They weren't anything I would spend $20 for.
Shuttles: This was the first time they used shuttles to get us to the island (yes the race is run on an island) and they seemed to have worked well. We got there with plenty of time, but we all noticed, those that took cars were in some trouble. In the long line of cars trying to get onto the island, people started getting out of their cars and running 1-2 miles to make it to the start for the half marathon (which started about a half hour after us). If you go to this race.. opt for the shuttle!
Course: The course wasn't anything too spectacular. Very quiet with a few animals on farms along the way. I guess it was pretty, but nothing I would go out of my way for. It was pretty flat as advertised. There were a few areas with long low graded hills up then down, which weren't too bad. I'm not a huge fan of flat normally, but this wasn't too bad.
Miserable Maniac!: So we get to a small out-and-back turn-around point and I saw a Marathon Maniac in front of me a little ways. I say good job and I get NOTHING back. Then we're running down a small hill that I pass him at and about a half mile later I pull to the left and walk for a minute so I can fix my headphones. Well what does this guy do? Comes up behind me and actually SHOVES me aside to get by me. No excuse me, no apology, just a shove. I've never once met a maniac that is anything less than thrilled to see and run with other maniacs in a race. If that's your attitude sir, leave your maniac jersey at home!!!!
Strawberry Shortcake: The shortcake was as great as they made it out to be! They grow all kinds of berries on the island, and the strawberries were great about a half hour after the finish!
Marathon Hardware!: The medals were ummm... different. They have a hard cardboard center with a recycled bicycle chain around the outside. Bike's are huge out here in OR country! I wasn't overly thrilled with this new hardware, but then our groupies came and groupie #1 CJ (MB's cousin Jodi... CJ = Cousin Jodi :) hehe) gave me a very pretty necklace and ring she made on the way down! She does beading and the stuff she makes is amazing! This made up for my lackluster medal.
Ok off to enjoy Portland and the 4th of July... more to come in my race ratings.
Happy Running and Happy 4th of July!