Monday, May 4, 2009

Craptastic Long Run & Eugene Marathon Spectator Report

Saturday was a stepback long run for me. I was aiming for 15-17 miles, hoping for 17. I made it 16 and struggled the whole way. Mr. Pi and I set out around 9am, he was going to run with me to a new trail he discovered (note: The photo is from the December snow storm, rainy on Saturday but not snowy). I thought it was going to be about 3 miles to the trail, ended up being 5 or 6. Mr. Pi was such a trooper and trotted along at my pace, which was slower than normal. Not sure what happened to me on this run! On my recent 20 miler, I felt great and was able to maintain 11:45 mm (close to my RP), this 16 miler came in at 3:16:03/12:15 Avg. It was a struggle the whole way. I ended up using the Galloway method after Mr. Pi left around mile 6. It got me through my run but starting and stopping was hard for me, made me really tempted to stop and walk the whole way. I ended the week with 34 miles, far off of my 40 mile goal but with another 20 miler scheduled for this weekend, I'm hopeful I can get to 40.
Sunday was the EUGENE MARATHON! Gazelle and I hit Starbucks around 5:45 am and headed out in the foggy and drizzle toward Eugene. Our first stop was mile 8 where we anxiously awaited seeing: Zach, Jen, PDX chicks, Shelly (@smellycents on twitter) and Aron! We thought we had missed Zach but almost immediately after we settled into our cheerzone Zach wooshed by! Sadly, we weren't prepared so we missed a photo op but Zach did pump his fist in the air so we knew he heard us yelling! (He totally nailed an amazing PR 1:34:XX...holy cow that's fast! Read the report here.) Not too long after, Jen came by. Again, we weren't totally prepared for her either but Amy did snap an ass shot of her! (read her full report here.) (P.S. Sorry all of these pics will be repeats of Amy's or Aron's, I didn't have a camera.)

We missed Shelly but we did see Aron looking strong. (Note: I plan to be as bright as possible in SD, it was so easy to pick Aron out of the crowd. That way all you speedsters running SD won't have a problem seeing me as I round the corner for the finish line on May 31st.)

Just to give you an idea of what these runners got to see, here's a few pictures of our awesome signs! We got lots of smiles on the course which was so rewarding (marathoning is hard work I can barely muster a smirk let alone a shout out to spectators, we had several yesterday). It's all in the signs!

We had to include some ROHO love since I know those gals really wanted to be there!

Fitting for the girl with 5 of 10 toenails to be holding this sign! (P.S. They are growing back, slowly.)

After mile 8 we headed to mile 17. We had planned a stop at mile 14 too but thought Aron would be beat us there so we went to 17 instead. We were there with plenty of time and even got to see the police escort the front runners through the course! So cool! We also saw plenty of "red elevens" and lots of muddy backsides. Here's Aron and her hubby (who jumped in to run with her and support her through her tough miles).

Our final stop was mile 24.5. We saw crazy Shelly run by on her way to finishing her 3rd marathon in 13 days with a PR of something ridiculous like 3:32 (yes, that's right peeps, she's crazy).
By this point, I was ready to jump in the marathon and finish out the last few miles with the fast crowd (just to see what it would be like to run with the under 4 hour crew). Of course I didn't but part of me really wanted to, especially when we saw Aron for the last time. She mustered a smile, which at mile 24.5 after a tough race is hard (I know b/c I'm usually sobbing at this point or whispering obscenities). I wanted to jump in and (sprint, for me) along with her and Chris and tell her how inspirational she is and how she's one of the runners I look up to, instead Amy and I cheered loudly and headed to the finish.

Aron finishing strong after a tough race with a smile and a high-five!

Everyone ran great races and finished strong. I can't wait to spectate another race. I didn't even mind the 5:00 am wakeup call. Great job to all the other racers this weekend. Dan of 4 Feet Running ran his FIRST half marathon, Kristen ran her FIRST marathon, Carrie PR'd ...I'm sure I missed a few others...Great Racing Everyone!