Thursday, April 27, 2017

Mileage and Blisters and Cheers, Oh My! Garmin Marathon 2017

Well, Dorothy, I don't think we are in Kansas anymore.

That's right.  But 5 days ago we were...that's me and Biz thank you very much.  And I took care of state #5 in my marathon maniacs the Olathe Marathon, in the "Land of Oz".  I knew that this wasn't a PR marathon - I signed up 6 weeks prior, flew halfway across the country with a 19 month old, and my longest run clocked at 15 miles.  But I also knew that PR's aren't everything, I COULD run 26 miles (that other .2...who knows) and it was too good of a chance to pass up - I got to visit Greg's cousin Lisa C. (who I adore) and my cousin's Lisa V., Shel, Brian and Gage (the first two, i have basically idolized since I was in diapers, and who had never met the Biz) Whats the downside?  NONE!

Pre Race - Biz and I flew in mega late Wednesday, we spent a few days with Lisa C. picked up race packet (number 4:20 - good omen?  Or just a hungry one??), PB sammich goodies, and drove the course (Kansas is NOT flat) and tried to get a good night's sleep on Friday night.  Till Biz woke up at 2am and proceeded to have a girlfriend's chat fest every 10 minutes until my alarm went off at 4:30.  Biz, I love ya.  I'm also used to this.  No bigs.  I left her for some Auntie Lisa C. Snugs and headed off to drive the whole mile to shuttle pick up (I love the fact that race start was 4 miles from Lisa C.'s house!!)

Took the shuttle in to some god awful traffic, hit the porta, stretched, ate my sammich and banana, pinned my gu's, stuffed my gummies down my bra (it has a food pocket, I'm not THAT gross) and headed to the start.  I wasn't going to risk a Garmin malfunction (though this was the Garmin marathon so I would have taken them to task!) so I cut up some tube socks for arm warmers.  This race also had a costume contest, including a 10 TEAM tethered dragon who ran the whole marathon in costume tied together  Yikes.  (At least I did beat the dragon - spoiler alert!) 6:40.  Ready to go.  I met up with a few guys from TX who were on state #33 and we chatted for a bit until we heard thee almost worst words...delayed start.  Ugh.  And its 48 degrees.   The parking was a cluster eff, so basically half of the 2600 people running weren't there.  Damn.  So we waited.  And shivered.  For 30 minutes.  At this point I really had to pee, but of course I heard.....the gun!!

Miles 1-6:  I alternated between a cruising pace and the potty dance for the first six miles, tryng to ignore the latter.  The rollers were pretty decent - but at least KS has a downhill for every uphill, which I SWEAR NY doesn't!  I was clocking 8:45ish pace, a comfortable pace but obviously too fast for my overall goal, which was sub 4:15, a number that was picked out of a hat because it sounded good.  But I have found that negative splits will never work for me in a race this long, so I made peace with it.

Miles 7-12:  More rollers, more steep uphills.  And the wind was picking up, so much that it blew my visor off a few times.  I was still having fun, realizing that if I started only being half crazy and doing 25 halfs in 25 states it would probably be wiser and I would race much better.  Eh, life is short.  Bring on the pain.  At mile 12 a woman yelled out to us "You look Great!" at a particularly large hill.  What a (nice) liar.  I joked about it, and she heard me....and immediately downgraded her comment to "You look pretty good".  Bwahaha.  The truth hurts.  I ain't lyin'.  Youtube says so. (6:15 in - Thanks Jason!_

Miles 13-19: At this point, the marathon folks peeled off and headed into a few steep uphill/downhill sections before spitting us onto a canal like path.  I hit the halfway point in 1:58, which sounds good in theory, but I knew I wouldn't be able to hold.  The wind was picking up and I lost my visor twice in a matter of 15 minutes....considered chucking it at the aid station but it's a nice visor so buh bye 2 minutes of race time.  Oh wells.  I started to falter around mile 15, and took in some sugar.  It was obvious that out of the 2600 people.....only about 25% were marathoners.  I don't need a parade, but the path was pretty desolate, so I started playing mind games and zoning out, ignoring the inevitable pain of why in the hell do you run for 2.5 hours and half 10 miles to go thoughts....mile 19.5 turnaround.  I planned to hit it at 3:00 and was right on the nose, give or take 60 seconds.  We turned around and were at the "home" stretch.

Mile 25.  I am not lying.
Miles 20-26.2: Home stretch good in theory, but there was an hour plus to go.  I stopped at a port o potty, which I never do, but I'm not Ironman Florida guy, so I will leave it at that.  (Google it.  You'll die).  4 minute loss, well worth it.  I grabbed some high quality h2o and was back in the game.  I started my weird math gait.....since it was a turnaround, I could see the guys behind us.  I would count 10, then walk for 2, then do it again.  The dragon went running by and I counted that one as one...because being dragoned is sort of like being beaten by an 80 year old in a tri.  You will...but it sucks.  Iw as NOT getting dragoned.  Averaging 11 minute miles, which was fine with me because I knew 4:15 was mine.  At mile 24 (which was all the fuck up hill....what is it wih mile 24 and I??) I caught up with the 4:00 pacer....which made no sense, but he admitted he had an off day, so we ran in together.  Saw Lisa C, Shel and my baby girl at the finish cheering me on and I ran it in, good for a 4:13 finish with a smile on my face!

I don't recall specifics, but I rounded out in the top 25% overall and also for women, and top third in my AG, the first three placers being the overall first 3. 9:39 pace. I'll take it!

Post Race - Diet coke (I love you Lisa).  Biz and Mommy pics!  Then back to the house for some rest, feet up, and 5 guys greasy delish with Lisa's, Shel and the bizzle.

Overall, a highly recommended race with a cute medal, perfectly fitting tee, and a great race locale.  It's been real Kansas!

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