Date/Time: May 1st, 2011, 7:30 am
Weather: 7ish, Cool sunshine and not a single drop of rain.
Chip time: 3:07:32 (4:27 per km pace) new pb!
Gun time: 3:08:00
Age Group: 25/211
I remember it was absolutely gorgeous running weather for this marathon. Fantastic race support I might add! Okay, that was probably the biggest understatement of the year – but still awesome race bling, music, scenic route, cheer zones, many fans, GU & aid stations, and pre-race urinal rooms (a little too much info?), and the list goes on and on!! I felt like a rockstar. I was a rockstar!!
This was my first BMO race ever and I was a little aw-shocked with the number of runners here in my very back yard. I was caught chit-chatting when I bumped into mr. sauce (Derrick), who had signed up the night before to test his 8K distance. This explains my poor start time HAHA, but I really did enjoy the race.
I tried starting slow, but I just couldn’t resist the temptation. I started going faster barely after the first 5K already (21:03) and had a faster split by 10K (41:45). Between 15K and 20K, a Japanese dude was dressed up in a monkey suit and holding a decent pace in the low 4 minute/km. I tried sticking with him but had the unfortunate image of seeing his back sweat seeping into the costume. I give him A for effort tho. I was able to make the heroic pass soon later. Unfortunately for zee monkey man, he was nowhere to be seen afterwards.
By close to 20K, I was actually really close to smashing my half-marathon pb (1:28:35ish from 2009). My legs still felt fine by this point. I think the halfway time is actually a little shy of the marathon-halfway since this was actually the location for the half-way of the half-marathon. Clear as mud? For the record, maybe add 90 seconds and that’s probably more correct – I think I should be around 1:29:00, which is not quite my half-marathon pb by my books.
By 30K onwards, it was just a matter of how fast my legs can make the daunting approaches on Burrard Bridge as pace times were already thrown out the window. Garmin wasn’t impressed.
But as the distance grew, so did the calf tightness. My right calf started cramping so much that it altered my form and I was compensating with my left foot. The tendon on my left foot outer side eventually got so bad, I knew this requires some serious downtime from running the next week or so.
I had this sweet RunningRoom pace band with all the odd-numbered km split times. Too bad for me, it was a uniform distribution and my exponential relationship was a terrible fit to the pace band times by this latter end of the race. Still a great gadget to have on hand (oh a pun) http://www.clinics.runningroom.com/paceband.php
As I crossed the finished line...I took two tiny steps to a grinding hault and one of the finish-line catchers kindly whispered in my ear, "walk it off, the cramping will go away." Easy for him to say...but I think it helped.
My final thoughts:
My time may not have been fast enough to register for Boston next year with the new staggering scheme for registration, but I’m keeping my optimism high. Hopefully the world isn’t paying attention and I can still sneak in with my qualifying time. ^^ It’s likely it will come down to me vs. 100,000 for 26,000 spots.
Despite this, I was quite happy I was able to qualify for Boston again, and this time doing it as a working man. Not too shabby, this was 20 seconds faster on a more challenging course than my previous pb. I did get some more decent mileage in these few months and gain a little more confidence everyday for that Ironman in late August.
Boston crew: Brendan, ThunderThighs, Max, Liam (and also Carl and James but not shown). All had fantastic Boston qualifying times; Big congrats! =)
10 months ago