Sunday, January 13, 2008

Stuck at 2:37

2:37:40, 30th place, a few seconds shy of a personal best.

Perfect conditions and an honest course, so I have no excuses. The urge to sprint in hopes of gaining a P.R. by a few seconds just wasn't with me, as I had loftier goals for the day.

The splits on the race site are fairly accurate and tell the tale:
10K, 36:56, 5:57 pace
half, 1:17:40, 5:56 pace
20 miles, 1:59:18, 5:58 pace
26.2 miles, 2:37:40, 6:01 pace

While I started conservatively (which was my plan) with a few miles between 6:00 and 6:10, I never really felt great as I eased into goal pace. At halfway I was on pace but already laboring, so I stopped checking splits and tried to run just on the brink of within myself. By 20 miles I could feel the stress and the legs were starting to go out from under me, but if I kept the pace moderate I could keep going forward (I was still catching people here who were paying for faster starts). The last 5K found me bleary, weary and on the edge of knocking into cones from fatigue, but not the hard bonk I've suffered through in the past. For this I was very grateful.

Haiden and my parents were able to see my finish, and I enjoyed Dusty and her cheering section around mile 5. While I'm disappointed with the time, I definitely raced smarter than I have in the past, and I feel like I learned a bit about adjusting to circumstances on the road instead of just ignoring them and barreling through to the inevitable breakdown.

5:59, 6:07, 5:54(short), 6:11(long), 5:33( very short), 5:54, 5:52, 5:52, 5:50, 5:58, 5:57, 5:49, 6:01, 5:54, 6:01, 6:08, 6:04, 6:02, 5:59, 6:04, 6:11, 6:02, 6:19, 6:10, 6:06, 6:12, 1:19

No trainwreck, just a good lobster in a pot slowly realizing his fate.

Thanks to Kiera and the family for putting up with my nonsense, and thanks to Mystery Coach for guiding it. Thanks to you for reading it and for all the support.



Chris Field said...

Sorry you didn't run what you wanted. This is where I will keep from saying all the kind of crap that I would not want to here.

Hang in there.

Adam Marks said...

Well done Mike on a good race. I would say bad luck regarding the PB but to come within 8 secs of a PB is not a failure given what you have learned over the past couple of years. If you can look back at the race and say that you gave it your best on the day then you should be well pleased.

Ryan Cleary said...

Nonsense my butt. You inspire a lot of us with your hard work and enthusiasm. 2:37 on a not-your-best-feeling-kind-of-day is great! Think about what'll happen on a day when it all clicks!


Michael said...

I’m sorry you didn’t achieve the race time you wanted, still, congratulations for having the courage to try… well done all around! Now, how about some well deserved rest and recovery, enjoy the time as it has been well earned.

Dusty said...

Nothing to sneeze at. You looked relaxed, you looked strong and you ran a smart race. You almost matched your PR which is incredible and has you poised to break through it on your next race.

Thanks for saying you felt like you might run into cones, with your placing, you actually sound human with that comment! :) So it said 2nd for something - was that age group? Did you win anything?! 27th male and 30th finisher - IMPRESSIVE

Besides, you qualified for the women's olympic trails... I know you are a guy, but HOLY COW!

Andrew said...

Those splits are definitely experience talking. A less seasoned runner would have crashed it. Excellent performance, Mike.

Mike said...

Speaking of the trials, I was really hoping Susan Loken would make the "A" standard, but it didn't seem to be her day either. The 2nd place for me must be for 35-39, though I wish it were for 2nd Arizonan (that paid $500). The results show that Phoenix apparently has some new Kenyan residents.

Thanks for the comments. Andrew, I only saw the splits for the second half while typing the post, so I was a bit surprised that I didn't fall off more abruptly. I think all the miles are to thank for that as much as anything.

Love2Run said...

Nice job Mike, too bad the stars weren't better aligned for you today. Your splits are so consistent and tell the story of how hard you worked to hold on. Rest well!

Grellan said...

Well done Mike, that's a very impressive run, so close. Fall off at the end is very slight. You did yourself proud.

Dejene Yirdawe, placed 2nd today came 3rd in the Dublin City Marathon in October. He certainly gets around.

Gregg said...

it's been a joy watching you prepare for the race and seeing it unfold. it may not be the race you wanted but as you stated, I am sure you learned valuable lessons for the next time out. I've ran 9 of these suckers and have yet to have my day, and it may never come?
thanks for all the updates... enjoy the rest.

by7 said...

Mike, congratulations for the race. We were all with you on the road, since I personally felt very involved in following the progression of your training.
Once the emotions will be settles, we may discuss with calm how to do better next time

running faster with the ALIEN LIZARD said...

mike you just ran 3 marathons very close together,its pretty amazing that you could run 2.40 and 2.37.
your body can only take so much,each marathon takes its toll.
i know you would be jumping for joy if you went through the line in 2.35.
but you still got years of improvement in you.
my friend set a marathon p.b. at age 49 with 2.27, have a good rest and come back fresh.
running is a hard game,but it gives us so much. don't beat your self up about your performance you did the best you could.

Thomas said...

Everyone's jolly nice, and 2:37 is a time only a small amount of people can run, but ...

ok, I'll stick out my neck and say that in my opinion the Tucson marathon hurt you over the last few miles, and probably cost you your time goal.

Dallen said...

Those new PR's are hard to reach, but they will eventually come.

Marc said...

" I have no excuses."

You do not need them.

Onwards and upwards.

Abadabajev said...

High mileage is definitely your calling. Congrats sir.

Ewen said...

Sorry it wasn't what you wanted Mike, but you ran a smart race. I like the description "on the brink of within myself".

From what Mystery Coach said, things didn't go exactly to plan in the final preparation and taper. 77:40/80:00 on the right day could be a 77:00/76:30.

Mark said...

Congratulations Mike on your Marathon and second best time!