Wednesday, January 10, 2007

disney marathon

Marathon, 4:22:08/159 (9:59 pace)

Just went and ran a marathon. It was very warm, so my heart rates were very high for the pace. We also had 3 (!) bathroom breaks, walked the aid stations/food stations, took pictures, posed with characters, etc., which added at least 5 minutes. I was surprised to find my heart rate in the mid-180's for the last 11 minute mile.

Weekend summary

I viewed the trip as one endurance event: a marathon and a half tucked in 6 days in the parks with the wife and kids. In some ways the running was a break :-) The goal was to make it through the distance in good enough shape that I wouldn't whine when chasing the family around the park on Monday and Tuesday. I ran it with a friend and our strategy was simple: run 10 minute miles both days. 10 min/mi is my typical training pace and we wanted to run slow enough on Saturday, because we figured the worst mistake you could make would be to run Saturday hard enough that you didn't want to run on Sunday. This was really a "for fun" race for me and it made 3 marathons, two halfs, and a 5K in 10 weeks. The last marathon was 6 weeks earlier and I ran it in 3:43, so the 10 min/mi should have been pretty comfortable.

In short, we executed the plan. The three "halves" were 2:11:26, 2:11:09, and 2:10:59 for a 10:00.5 min/mi pace overall. Close enough :-) The evenness of the splits is a little deceiving though as there were 5 bathroom breaks in there, pictures with characters, a stop to kiss my kids, etc. We were rather casual. The splits varied from 9:12 to 11:39 depending on pit stops. Our only big mistake was going out too slow, taking one of our leisurely bathroom breaks in mile 2, and then letting the 4:30 pace group pass us. It then took miles to get past the throng of people behind the 4:30 pacer. As others have said, running through the parks was a blast, but the roads sucked, especially miles 18-22.

It was very warm and at 11am on Sunday it was 79 degrees with a dew point of 67 according the (we finished around 10:22). 10 min/miles in that was much harder than the 40 degree temps in Viriginia and the weather when I ran my last marathon. I felt like I was getting a little overheated at the end and dump several cups of water over my head at each aid station. I was very surprised to see my heart rate in the 180s in the last couple of miles. In fact, my mile 26 average was higher on Sunday.

My 9 year-old son (who saw my at mile 18) was rather unimpressed I guess as the first thing he said to me was, "There was an old man ahead of you. He had a crutch." I later figured out the "old man with a crutch" was the forty-something guy with a huge leg brace that we passed somewhere around mile 20. I have no idea how he ran with that thing.

Above a comparison of my 3:43 marathon and this 4:22 marathon. Notice that my heart rate is fairly close at the 3:30 point even though I ran much slower on Sunday.


62 miles
wc7-3: 315 + 16 = 331
wr9-1: 284 + 46 = 330

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