Print Story My first marathon by the numbers
Diary
By lm (Wed Mar 13, 2019 at 06:12:27 AM EST) (all tags)
tldr; I finished


5 pounds

This is the amount of weight I gained the week before the marathon. Turns out that when you're not running every day and you stop caring what you eat because you're carbing up, you put on some pounds. Monday through Wednesday I still rode my bike 20 miles each day to get to work and back. Thursday and Friday I didn't even do that much.

As bad as that sounds, my weight gain seems to have been all muscle. I lost about 2% of my body fat during that same week. Which makes me wonder if I don't need to incorporate more rest into my program.

4 hours

The amount of sleep I got the night before was not optimal. I sleep better when I run every day. Take out the biking and, wouldn't you know it, I'm just not tired at the end of the day.

30 seconds

I was late to the starting line by 30 seconds. This turned out okay as I was in corral #5 and only corral #1 was released hard at start time. Then the other corrals were released in 1 minute increments.

15 miles

Up to fifteen miles, I was having a lot of fun. My first 10 miles were mostly at a 10:40 pace. 10 through 15 were 11ish. From there they slowly climbed up until my last miles were right around 15.

Mile 15 was also where things started to get slightly unpleasant. Every mile after 15 was more unpleasant. By the end of the race, everything hurt and I was miserable.

Mile 19

Mile 19 was where the audience hated the runners. At the starting line near the national mall, there was a crowd of cheering folks. After going close by the Georgetown waterfront and into Adams Morgan, we hit some residences. Folks were coming out onto their porches or setting up lawn chairs and cheering the runners on. Some houses were giving out trinkets like leprechaun hats or left over mardi gras beads. One had apparently been giving out beers and by the time my slow ass passed by had a sign, "Beer Bar Closed by Order of DCPD".

Went through more neighborhoods, down into Shaw. There was still cheering, although fewer spectators. (Part of this probably was because I'm slow and getting hours into the race.) A couple of bars were advertising free shots.

Then the route went into Anacostia which had a totally different vibe. Residents were loud and boisterous and yelling but they were no longer cheering.

"WHY THE HELL YOU RUNNING??!!"

"GO BACK TO YOUR OWN NEIGHBORHOOD!!"

5:26:41

My official time. Three minutes, nineteen seconds under the time limit. Finishing the race was my only real goal. The time predictor I'd punched my training runs into suggested my finish time would be 5:40. This race had a 5:30 hard limit. I wasn't sure if I was going to make the finish line in time.

By the time I crossed the finish line all I could think was "That sucked. I'm never doing that again."

2 beers

At the after party, all the athletes were given tickets for two free beers. It was so miserable that folks were trying to give away their tickets and couldn't. Imagine. Turning down free beers!

Of course the beers were ice cold. It was a mere 40 degrees Fahrenheit out. Folks had just run a marathon (or a half depending on which race they registered for). There was no place to sit, only a wet and muddy field to stand in.

It was miserable.

So I went to take the train home.

2:46

This is the amount of time it took me to get from "That sucked. I'm never doing that again." to wondering what I could do to get my race time down.

SInce the first half of the race was fun for me, I'll probably only do half marathons for the time being. But I think I'll start working on speed. Once upon a time - before a number of different health problems - I could run five 8 minute miles back to back. If I can do a half marathon at consistent 9 minute miles, I'll consider doing a full marathon again.

4 days

This is the amount of time it took me to stop limping. I'm not sure where or when it happened but at some point I did something that bruised the bottom outer edge of my right foot. The pain was bad enough that I cheated and took ibuprofen alternated with paracetamol. But not so bad that I had to wrap my foot or use a cane or crutches.

1

This is the number of weeks I'm giving myself off before I start running again. With a marathon under my belt, my next race is another half ironman, Monticelloman down in VA. I wantedto do the Kinetic Half again but it's held the same week as my youngest daughter is graduating from college and I'll be out on the left coast in Portlandia.

< This new life has toughened and hardened us all | Weekend Update >
My first marathon by the numbers | 26 comments (26 topical, 0 hidden)
yikes by wumpus (2.00 / 0) #1 Wed Mar 13, 2019 at 08:22:34 AM EST
After running one (back when I was young), I pretty much had hypothermia under similar conditions and couldn't imagine being outside in a muddy field after I'd stopped running. Hopefully you had something more to wear than what you ran in.

I managed to injure my knee by running again after a week, but that appears to be due to running on an unlevel trail and eventually my knee refused to deal with it (fortunately letting me run the marathon first).

Not sure my inability to do 8 minute miles is age or not. I'm a bit worried it is age.

Wumpus

I packed sweats and an extra jacket by lm (2.00 / 0) #8 Wed Mar 13, 2019 at 03:05:44 PM EST
They had a gear check so I had warm clothes waiting for me.

There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
Did you need a bib and tickets by georgeha (2.00 / 0) #2 Wed Mar 13, 2019 at 08:57:02 AM EST
to get free beer? Of course, it's probably cheap mass market swill.


Needed tickets by lm (2.00 / 0) #7 Wed Mar 13, 2019 at 03:04:47 PM EST
Bib didn’t matter

The last half iron race I did brought in a local VA brewery to run the beer tent. It was nice


There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
Congrats!!! by me0w (2.00 / 0) #3 Wed Mar 13, 2019 at 09:54:58 AM EST
You and Theo keep me motivated to keep running and keep working on my distance and time. Keep posting about it!



Then the route went into Anacostia by wiredog (4.00 / 1) #4 Wed Mar 13, 2019 at 10:44:31 AM EST
Oh my God. Scores of white people running through Anacostia.

I could run five 8 minute miles back to back.
When I was in the Army we had a marathoner as a company commander, and we ran 7 1/2 minute miles for 5 miles while calling cadence. The Battalion Sergeant Major had a heart attack trying to keep up with us after which we weren't allowed to lead battalion runs. I could run 2 miles in 11 1/2 minutes. Smoked a pack a day of Marlboro reds and a quarter ounce of weed a week. Helped to be 20.

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

I'm not sure I could have run a mile when I was 20 by lm (2.00 / 0) #10 Wed Mar 13, 2019 at 05:29:50 PM EST
I could do the 8 minute miles when I was in my late thirties or early forties. I didn't start running until I was in my mid thirties.

There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
Oh, you were in that! by Merekat (2.00 / 0) #5 Wed Mar 13, 2019 at 12:21:34 PM EST
It caused my bus to vanish.

Seems like every one of my cow-orkers by lm (2.00 / 0) #9 Wed Mar 13, 2019 at 03:07:49 PM EST
Had a story about a massive delay or problem that day because of the road closures.

There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
The Mrs by sasquatchan (2.00 / 0) #6 Wed Mar 13, 2019 at 12:58:51 PM EST
was in DC with middle child to meet cousins and kids. They gave up trying to get to the zoo because of all the road closures for the race. Ended up doing smithsonians instead.

Once upon I time I did 8 miles at an 8min pace (just under, 63 and change minutes).  Too many injuries, and time, have taken a toll. I'm OK running 3-5 miles, and race just one 5k a year (turkey trot)

Yeah, bad day to try to get to the zoo by lm (2.00 / 0) #11 Wed Mar 13, 2019 at 05:31:30 PM EST
At least in the morning. I would imagine most of the roads would have been open by noon.

There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
ahhhh East Of the River by dev trash (2.00 / 0) #12 Wed Mar 13, 2019 at 06:38:42 PM EST
Well hey.

--
I DON'T CARE ABOUT YOUR BALLS! ->clock
5 lbs by ucblockhead (2.00 / 0) #13 Wed Mar 13, 2019 at 09:51:49 PM EST
If you were "carbing up", it's likely that most of that was water weight and stuff on it's way through but not there to stay, as it were.

From what I recall, all muscle gain happens within 48 hours of said muscles being broken down by exercise.
---
[ucblockhead is] useless and subhuman

Some was definitely water weight by lm (2.00 / 0) #17 Thu Mar 14, 2019 at 05:55:32 AM EST
But I checked the memory on my scale this morning. Last week, my muscle mass % was also up compared to the week before.

There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
Awesome by Scrymarch (2.00 / 0) #14 Wed Mar 13, 2019 at 09:52:18 PM EST
5:30 seems like a pretty strict cutoff time for a marathon.

I can't understand any of your splits because I speak kilometre-ese, but frankly any marathon finish time is a good one. I've only done halves.

Do you have to swim away from redcoats at Monticelloman?

Iambic Web Certified

The marathon was through downtown Washington DC by lm (4.00 / 1) #16 Thu Mar 14, 2019 at 05:20:24 AM EST
The cutoff for the half marathon was 5 hours. It started half an hour later.

In each case, the cutoff was driven by the desire to keep street closures to a minimum.

---

No redcoats at the swim at Monticelloman, just 1.9km in an artificial lake created by a dam on the Rivanna river.


There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
Woooo! by TheophileEscargot (2.00 / 0) #15 Thu Mar 14, 2019 at 12:20:41 AM EST
First marathon, well done! That's a tough cutoff.
--
It is unlikely that the good of a snail should reside in its shell: so is it likely that the good of a man should?
Marathons are dumb by barooo (2.00 / 0) #18 Fri Mar 15, 2019 at 03:19:54 PM EST
Congrats.   

I do miss running, but my achilles tendonitis / bone spurs wont' tolerate it any more, with any degree of seriousness or any real mileage; I can do 3-4 miles if I don't push it, a couple times a week, before it starts to get significantly worse.



man, i need a beefy taco now.
-gzt
Maybe you should try triathlons by georgeha (2.00 / 0) #19 Fri Mar 15, 2019 at 03:34:57 PM EST



[ Parent ]
Marathons aren't dumb by lm (2.00 / 0) #20 Fri Mar 15, 2019 at 06:01:20 PM EST
People that run marathons are dumb.

Do you miss running? If not, it's not a huge loss. If you do, that's kind of sad.


There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
I miss it by ucblockhead (2.00 / 0) #21 Fri Mar 15, 2019 at 06:52:05 PM EST
I was never that great, but I enjoyed it.  Then Is started getting pain in my knees when sitting for long periods.  The orthopedist diagnosed it as the beginnings of osteoarthritis.

Or, in his more direct words:  "Yup.  That's why people stop running when they get old"
---
[ucblockhead is] useless and subhuman

[ Parent ]
I need to stretch more by lm (2.00 / 0) #24 Sat Mar 16, 2019 at 02:20:30 PM EST
There's been some really good recent studies about strategies to combat the general effects of aging on performance vis a vis exercise.

But one thing those strategies can't account for are things like osteoarthritis.

I feel bad for you. That blows.

The good news for me is that swimming and cycling are both very low impact on the joints. So even if I run into issues with running down the line, there's a lot open to me in my preferred sports.


There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
Heh by barooo (2.00 / 0) #22 Sat Mar 16, 2019 at 07:47:01 AM EST
Nah, I totally understand the appeal.  I really like marathon training and long runs, I really enjoy just zoning out for an hour or so and runnning, I like running new routes or routes with interesting scenery, so I'm really bummed I apparently can't do that any more.  The longest I've run since 2014 was an 8 miler last summer, and that set me back a couple of weeks; it felt great but a couple hours later I could barely walk on my right ankle.

Triathlon is semi-tempting, but the training is even more of a commitment, especially the swimming.  I don't have access to a pool without changing gyms, and I love my $25/month olympic lifting friendly gym.

man, i need a beefy taco now.
-gzt
[ Parent ]
If running is an issue ... by lm (2.00 / 0) #23 Sat Mar 16, 2019 at 08:48:27 AM EST
... most tri races have a "aquabike" or "aquavelo" option. But that doesn't solve the access to a pool thing.

I hear you on the "zoning out" thing. Although for me I'm not sure "zoning out" is quite the right phrase. It's a zen thing. There's something about focusing on the immediate act that frees the mind.

Sucks that you can't really do something you enjoy like that.


There is no more degenerate kind of state than that in which the richest are supposed to be the best.
Cicero, The Republic
[ Parent ]
Meditating. by wiredog (2.00 / 0) #25 Sat Mar 16, 2019 at 07:25:05 PM EST
At least, for me, bicycling can be that way.

Earth First!
(We can strip mine the rest later.)

[ Parent ]
Yeah by barooo (2.00 / 0) #26 Mon Mar 18, 2019 at 09:17:09 AM EST
It's like focusing on the slightly uneven terrain of sidewalks/crosswalks/trails or whatever is just enough mental stimulation to keep me from getting bored, but little enough that I can just let my thoughts wander.  I'm making an attempt at building up again, so we'll see.  I did 4 yesterday and it hurts today but not too bad, I'm pretty sure I'll be able to run again tomorrow or wednesday.  It's also warming up to the point that I can start biking to work again soon. 

man, i need a beefy taco now.
-gzt
[ Parent ]
My first marathon by the numbers | 26 comments (26 topical, 0 hidden)