Monday, November 30, 2009
My personal rave run. . . Today I ran at Medoc. At first this morning, I didn't think I would run today. I just didn't feel well. But after Henry was up, we decided to head there and I would at least walk/run the shorter loop (Bluff trail) with Henry. Today was the day of the big "Medoc Re-Run" race for all of us who volunteered or couldn't make it to the actual event in Oct. The majority of people doing the re-run got there around 8 AM. Leading up to this day it looked like there could be as many as 30+ people out there running today but as is often the case, things come up, people are injured, etc. and the total number of runners dwindled. It is a holiday weekend after all. Regardless, there were probably still between 15 and 20. I didn't see everyone so I don't really know.
Henry and I didn't get there until close to 9:30 but that's okay. We headed out on the trail after I took a couple minutes to do some stretching (as I usually do, almost as a ritual, before exercise). Henry was wearing his Lightning McQueen toboggan and some mismatched gloves; Spiderman on one hand, Lightning McQueen on the other. As long as they keep the hands warm, that's all that matters. I broke out my running tights for the first time this year, was wearing my running headband (to cover my ears) and my red/white striped gloves.
I went ahead and set my watch so I would know how long we were out there, but no one was concerned with how fast we were going, or not going. Henry and I would walk some, then jog some, walk some, jog some. And of course, we would have to stop and pick up these perfect "walking sticks" that he spotted along the way. Once we were about a good mile into the trail, along comes the first runner from our group. Frank catches up with us and he is planning to run the full 26 miles today, instead of the 10 miles most people were planning to run. We keep up with him for awhile...sometimes ahead... sometimes behind... sometimes together. Henry thought it was big fun to get ahead of him. I guess it was nice for "little Hank" to have a little motivation, besides the recurring encouragement from mommy: "Come on Henry!" "You're doing great Henry, let's keep moving." "Let's do a little running Henry!"
Another 5 minutes and I hear voices coming up behind me. I knew there were some other runners from the group not too far behind Frank, because he told us they would catch us soon. He was right. I just didn't realize there would be a whole "conga line" of runners coming through. It was impressive. About 10 guys one right behind another moving swiftly along the path. I'm amazed at how fast some guys can run the trails. When the guys caught up, Henry just took off ahead on the trail. He was "leading" these fast guys for the next quarter mile or so. After a couple minutes, all of them were out of my sight and I was moving along, running at a decent pace. I guess Henry wanted to challenge himself? Or maybe it's his male ego (pride?) showing through at a young age. But he was really moving running along on the trail.
It was another 10 minutes before I caught him and I was going quick because I didn't want him on the trail by himself (because I figured eventually he would drop back behind the big group). I was right. We kept moving but I could tell Henry was starting to get tired. We did more walking than running to get back to the car. But he did it! Henry finished 3 miles on the trails and was awarded an honorary medal for his accomplishment.
So, now was the time of decision. I had planned to run 10 miles today so I could earn my Medoc 10-miler medal and shirt. Soooo....that's what I did. I left Henry with Michael, stopped at the restroom momentarily, picked up a water bottle and trucked back out onto the trails. This time I headed in the opposite direction. I was feeling pretty good and the weather was absolutely perfect for running. So, the decision to continue and finish what I started was easy.
It really was a great day to be there running. Most of the leaves had fallen. So, the trails were covered with leaves. I was afraid this might make it dangerous. And I guess to some degree it did. But, it wasn't bad. Either way, running or walking the trails requires paying careful attention to every step and every foot placement. I tried hard to balance watching the trail and admiring the scenery. There were actually points when I stopped just to look around and take in the surroundings. Often during a race, you wouldn't necessarily do that, but I was in no rush. And strangely enough, I didn't even have my camera with me. It was in the car. Oh well! And there were a few times the trail split off and I had to stop and try to remember which way the "course" goes. Lucky for me, I made good directional decisions. My sense of direction is "usually" pretty good. It worked for me today.
When I headed out on the Discovery and Summit trails, I continued along the trail for almost an hour before I ever encountered another person. It was like I was out there by myself. So secluded. Just me and my thoughts. I could hear the shuffle of my feet rustling through the leaves. It was a constant sound of leaves crunching beneath me. And there was the occasional misstep when one of my ankles would turn one way or the other because I landed on the side of a rock or root. It happened enough that I lost count. Or I would trip up some. Enough to scare me but not injure me. I feel fortunate. I got through the course again today without falling. The cool air was brisk. There was no breeze that I recall. The sun was shining the whole time. There were rays of sunshine falling through the treetops onto the trail. It was a beautiful day to be out there.
Just before I exited the trails, I ran into Scott and Ron who were running the marathon. They were on about mile 18. And they looked really good. All I could think is "more power to you." I think doing just the 10 miles is pretty tough, mainly because the trails make it harder. I have a great appreciation for the stamina and mental toughness it must take to complete the Medoc marathon. I had to finish the 10-miler by running the last (almost) 2 miles on the roads leading into the park (running out to the turnaround point and back). I ran the course out of order but finished all of the pieces. It wasn't maybe a fantastic way to finish but felt good to be on solid pavement after navigating the challenging trails. Plus, one of the last songs to come up on my Playlist was "Believe" from The Polar Express. Great song for the finishing stretch. I'm tired now but feeling pretty good. I ran (and walked/hiked) 10 miles today! And I earned my Medoc medal! And I did most of it out there all by myself which was GREAT. And the rest was with my little buddy. GREAT DAY!
Michael's Note: Congrats to Frank, Ron, and Scott for completing the marathon. I still have shirts for everyone in the list below who requested one. We still have hats too. To buy the hat, you must complete the run at some point. . . we are using the honor system!
Lost and Found: Found: one sweaty black Under Armor shirt, one sweaty black Asics Long sleeve "Eagles" Shirt, one sweaty grey Medoc cap. Lost: one Amphipod bottle (Ron), one small water bottle belt (Jeff)
Sunday, November 29, 2009
Thanksgiving morning was a great, and very foggy, day for the Inside Out Sports 8k Turkey Trot in Cary. Yes, this is the continuing saga of Ashley and Brian: The Beasts from the East, running the 2nd Empire Grand Prix Series. On a chilly and very foggy Thanksgiving morning, 670 runners braved the weather to burn some calories before they stuffed themselves with Tom Turkey.
The write ups are redundant but impressive for us both. Ashley, running like a Turkey on Thanksgiving Day (a very fast turkey) claimed a 5th place overall finish and 1st masters with a 28:50, or 5:49 pace. That's haulin some drumsticks baby. Brian had a very good race also but this turkey may end up on someone's dinner table. Perhaps he could use a little more meat on his drumsticks. Anyway, Brian placed 11th overall and 1st in his age group with a 30:16, or 6:06 pace. Again, a pretty good showing for the RMEC boys.
There are 2 races left in the series, the Jingle Bell Run on Dec. 5th and the Jolly Elf Trail Run on Dec. 12th. These are both 5ks so I'm expecting blistering results. Right now Ashley sits #1 in the series points and Brian is #2. Or should I say 2nd.
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
We are running at 8:00 am, but you are welcome to start early or late. This is a very laid back run. Come ready to just enjoy the cool morning and have fun. We will have a cooler of Gatorade at the main shelter and GUS. If you need more fuids, bring your own. If you are running more than 10 miles, I highly recommend it.
If you are writing a check, please make them out to RMEC. Cash is fine too. There are some other extra items that I will have with me on Saturday as well:
- $7 - A few white long sleeve 2008 Medoc Tech shirts
- $7 - A few Medoc 2008 Finishers hats
- $5 - Some 2008 Ford's Colony cotton shirts
- $5 - Some 2009 Ford's Colony cotton shirts (a variety of colors)
- $5 - A few black and/or grey cotton RMEC shirts
- Where: Thursday, 7:00 am @ Harris Teeter
- Supported: Bring your own fluids
- Weather: Forecast
- Routes: 6.67 Miles
Feel free to add to, subtract or change the route to meet your needs. Also, don't forget the Medoc Rerun is this Saturday! I will have a post with additional details shortly. Let us know if you are coming.
If you would like to race over the holidays, there are a few Turkey Trot options out there as well:
- 11/26 - Inside Out Turkey Trot 8k - Cary
- 11/26 - Ridgewood Turkey Trot 8k - Raleigh
- 11/26 - Gallop and Gorge 8k - Carrboro
Friday, November 20, 2009
- Where: Saturday, 8:00 am @ Red Oak Park
- Supported: Bring your own fluids
- Weather: Forecast
- Routes: 10 Miles
This is a 10 Mile route on pretty quite roads. If you do not want to do 10, review the map closely, and do an out and back route instead. Please stick around after the run and help Tracy with the RMEK race at the park. Bring and extra RMEC shirt to wear at the 10:00 event. We really need your help!
Monday, November 16, 2009
- When: Saturday 11/21
- Time: 10:00 am
- Location: Red Oak Park
- Distance: 1.5 mile or 5k run.
The RMEC will hold our normal Saturday group run at 8:00 am from the park. This gives everyone ample time to get in a long run, and get back in time to help set up and cheer for the RMEC. Tracy, Misty, and Elaine will be looking for help, so please come ready to volunteer. If you have a RMEC or RMEK shirt, please wear it to the event. It will be a short event, and all contained on the jogging trail, so please try to find the time if you can.
Next across the finish line was Abraham Cox with a PR time of 3:42:03! Abraham just set a PR at the Marine Corps Marathon with a time of 3:57, so he cut 15 minutes off his time and just three weeks!. I would love yo know your secret.
Jon's marathon training has gone great. He has lost so much weight, he looks like a different person. On Saturday, he successfully completed his first marathon with a time of 5:31:32. At the half, he was on pace to break five hours, so I have a feeling Jon will be back for another before long. Welcome to the "26.2 Club" Jon. . . now go get your window sticker!
Friday, November 13, 2009
Ashley had yet another PR in him this weekend running a 17:28 which would have won most Rocky Mount races, but was good for a 10th overall in Raleigh. Brian managed an equally impressive 18:23 earning him a 16th place finish. Both men won their age groups.
Ashley still sits atop the leader board with 4,271 points. Brian is in second place with 4,056 points. Ashley and Brian have both run all of the series races so far, so these standings will change as runners are allowed to drop their 2 slowest times or no shows for the series. As of now RMEC is proudly holding down the top two spots. Even once the races start to get dropped, both still are in contention. If you exclude any runner who has already missed three races, and look at the average points per race, this puts Ashley in 6th overall and Brian 9th.
Ashley and Brian may not be out on the marathon circuit right now, but these two have put in some serious training to produce the results you are seeing. Make no mistake. . . this is some seriously impressive work.
Once again, I just used a 10 mile route that is on our regular roads. It is easy to add or subtract to meet your own needs. Please RSVP if you are coming. I cannot put out fluids tomorrow, so if you can help please post a comment.
- Where: Saturday, 7:00 am @ Harris Teeter
- Supported: Yes at the Tracks
- Weather: Forecast
- Routes: 10 Miles
I know most of you hit your "big race" for the fall, but don't let that keep you away from the group runs. Things typically slow down in the fall/winter. This is when we all exercise less, and eat more. Keep your running going.
Thursday, November 12, 2009
Submitted By: Eric Seale
I attended a meeting last evening for the Red Cross ride that has been on hiatus since 2004. They are trying to re-start the ride. I did the ride in 2003 or 2004 and it was quite well run. I am going to be helping with setting up / marking out the courses and with flier distribution. The committee is looking for people who would volunteer to help now with the organization and possibly during the event. I know that they need someone to help with organizing the food for the start, finish and SAG stops at the moment - I believe that Judy (overall organizer) has some contact information to help.
The event is scheduled for May 8, 2010. It will start from the parking lot by the Dunn Center. There will be a 1 mile fun ride for families around the campus, a 19 mile ride and a metric century (63 miles).
If you think you would be interested in volunteering for helping with Corporate sponsorship, SAG support, goodie bag stuffing, flier distribution, registration, or donations, please let me know and I will pass along your contact information to Judy or Kristin.
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
Monday, November 09, 2009
I hardly know where to start, but my first inclination is to give thanks to God for shining down on me in so many ways. A second thanks to my husband and kids for putting up with me, their sacrifices during this journey and their support. And many, many thanks to my best friend Patti for all her support, especially on race day. Thanks to my coach Val for a brilliantly conceived training plan. And thanks to my extended family for their prayers and support. (Sorry, Mom, for all the anxiety I caused you.)
We headed to Wilmington Friday morning. My last couple of days were marked by a nagging headache that now I know was stress induced. I was distracted over the last couple of weeks during my taper by illnesses experienced by my children. I was in prayer constantly that I would stay healthy and make it to the starting line. The last few days prior to the race were mostly about organizing my five race bags that were to be distributed throughout my race; clothes from swim to be used at the finish, T1, bike special needs, T2, and run special needs.
We stayed with dear friends in Wilmington who were all about my comfort. What more could you ask? But Friday night I had to try hard to simply not think about the next day. I had to concentrate on the little things. Because whenever my mind ventured to the big picture it was more than I could grasp and would send me into a panic. So, I decided to fret about T1!
Here’s the deal: After swimming 2.4 miles in 66 deg. water, the air temperature around 40 deg.s, we would exit the water, have someone strip off our wet suits, go through a cold shower, then run/jog, half naked, carrying a cumbersome wetsuit, about 300 yds to the transition area. I was not happy with this prospect. It sounded like some contest out of Survivor. However, I did it. And it wasn’t awful! Once in T1 I entered a tent with about 20 or so other women trying to dress for a 40+ deg. bike ride (at least for the start). The first thing that caught my eye was a completely naked woman standing right in the middle (everyone else was seated around the walls of the tent). She was covered with tattoos on her arms and back. I decided to stop there and get about my own business.
I had decided before starting the race that it was not my style to get naked in front of strangers, so I simply added layers to my wet clothing. Well, anyone who has tried to put on spandex when you’re wet knows that this is no easy task. Needless to say my T1 was not quick. I also discovered that I had two right handed gloves in my T1 bag. That’s O.K., wore them anyway. Headed out to the bike (had to first make a potty stop). Heard the cheers from Patti and Billy; got some pics, and headed out for my 6+ hour ride. Another fact I had to break down into small increments.
At mile 5 a man wrecked his bike behind me. Sounded awful! He ran into a traffic cone and proceeded to skid on the pavement. I stopped to see if he was O.K. Fortunately one of the referee motorcycles was directly behind him and stopped to take care of the matter. I proceeded onward. My memories of the bike were beautiful scenery, wonderful volunteers, and a bear of a head wind for the last 40 miles! My averages dropped from 19 mph to 16 to 17 mph and I was working harder to achieve that miserable pace. That hurt the psyche, and unfortunately took more out of me than planned. I made two stops along the bike (not including the one after the crash) and never used my special needs bag. As I came into the Battleship area I saw this very large bridge looming, not a problem on the bike, hills I can handle. However, I noticed people running over that very large bridge. “Awwwwwe,” I wined in my mind. “Please tell me we’re not running over that!” Yep, we were. I dropped off my bike, had a much better T2 and headed out on my run. Saw my boys for the first time, Patti, my husband and friends, heard their cheers; very nice!
Took a right out of the Battleship and headed straight up hill. Half way up the hill someone had painted on the bridge, “Just Run Bitch.” That gave me a well needed chuckle. I ran/jogged up that bridge for the first and last time. I would go over it three more times but I would not be jogging. I descended the bridge, not bad. Took a right and stared at another bridge, not good; first two miles, two bridges. “I thought this was supposed to be a flat course.” I guess that depends on whether you’re a racer or someone marketing the race. Another mile and I descended a hill so steep if I had run fast I would have done a nose plant.
I continued along the water front of downtown Wilmington. Lots of spectators there which was nice, also cobblestones which were not nice. (Saw Jeannie and Eric Standal. They sent me an interesting pic. My body was slumped over and my head was hanging, but I had a grin on my face.) Well, had to leave the waterfront at the other end which naturally meant straight up hill. Gotta walk! I had a hard time walking up that hill! Take a right, continue to climb. Finally, headed for the lake and flatter countryside. Whew! But what kept nagging at me was I had to traverse those hills, yep, three more times. Finally at mile ten, my mind went dark. I was not finishing this race. “How was I going to tell Patti and my family and friends that I was not doing this out and back again?” “What would they say when I tell them I’m done?” “I’m not even to the turn around and my body can’t go any further, my foot is killing me, and my mind is out of the game.”
In comes Patti, “Kinnie Pruden!” I hear. “Go, Kinnie Pruden!” as she approaches. Finally a familiar face, one that will have sympathy and let me wallow in my self-pity. Well, if you know Patti Miller, given a competitive venue, that description does not suit her- thankfully. My eyes started to fill with tears, my lip quivered and Patti said, “Ah, ah, ah, they’ll be no crying! We’re not crying ‘til the finish line. Try just running 30 seconds.” “I’m walking the next 16,” I said. “My foot hurts.” (Notice my mind had immediately turned around. 16 miles was my goal instead of quitting.) Patti then gently continued to push me to run a little. “Why is she trying to get me to run?” I remember thinking. Tough love pulled me through. So I did start to run again, until I looked straight up that next steep hill.
But I persevered after that well needed kick in the pants from Patti – thank you from the bottom of my heart. I saw David Rose soon after that, who so nicely walked a little with me and offered tips; drink some Coke. I did, and it was great! (Peppermints were also a well needed break from all the sugary carbs.) Came in on the first loop. Patti had told a whole crowd my name and they loudly cheered me on by name; very cool. I actually don’t remember the turn around after that; just moved forward I guess. Oh yeah, grabbed my two left-handed gloves and arm warmers. Back up the bridges, done. Down and out of downtown, done.
“It’s dark. Why am I still out here?” They were giving out glow sticks so people could see me on the roads. Saw the same volunteers again, and again, and again. They were starting to look as tired as I was. “Coke, do you have Coke?” No we’re out. “What!” My much desired new friend, Coke, was not available on the second loop until mile 24. Bummer! Keep moving anyway. Talk to others. Notice on the return, last 6.5, there are people behind me! Hadn’t thought about that until now. Some of them actually starting their first loop! All of a sudden it was good to be me! I’m finishing this blasted thing! Moving along now with new vigor. My watch beeps another mile, 12:36. Maybe not as much vigor as I thought, but it’ll do.
One bridge down, last really big bridge looming. It’s O.K., I’m going home. Walked up the bridge, enjoyed the cool dark night and the lights at the Battleship which were ahead of me and the lights of downtown Wilmington which were now behind me. The lights reflected off the water as I reflected on my day. “Don’t cry yet, you’ll hyperventilate.” Over the top, start jogging/shuffling, whatever. 100 yards from the finish a guy with a walkie-talkie asked me if I was turning around or finishing. “I’m finishing.” and pointed in the direction of the finish line. I ran/jogged it in. And finally cried in the shoulder of a complete stranger (volunteer at finish line). She said, “I don’t even know who you are and you’re making me cry!” I finally got in the arms of my husband and my best friend. That’s where I had wanted to be since mile ten. 12 hours, 41 minutes and 33 seconds, done.
With a support team of Billy, Thorne, Will, and Patti the stage was set for a great day of racing at the Beach 2 Battleship Iron Distance Triathlon. This race begins with a 2.4 mile open water channel swim that connects with the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway. Kinnie was the 9th woman overall out of the water with a time of 53:15.
The 112 mile bike came next. We all know this is Kinnie's strength, and she did not disappoint! She posted the 21st fastest bike time of all competitors when she completed the leg with a time of 6:21:18. At this point in the race, Kinnie is sitting in the top 20 among all women in the race, but she still had a 26.2 mile marathon ahead of her. . .
Keep in mind that Kinnie has already been doing hard exercise for over seven hours, and the sun was about to start setting. Her muscles had become conditioned to pedaling in circles for six hours, and now she needed to teach them how to run again for 26.2 miles. . . off she went proudly wearing her RMEC logo in her quest for an "M-Dot". Five hours, 22 minutes, and 40 seconds later, she was back crossing the finish line under the lights. Mission complete!
GREAT JOB KINNIE!
- Total Time: 12:41:33
- Total Distance: 140.6 miles
- Overall Place: 32nd
- Complete Results: Link
Frank Lilley returned to OBX after a tough race in 2008 when he was just coming off of being sick. Once again however the race challenged Frank as he finished with a time of 5:46:17. In Frank's words "OBX Marathon:2. Frank: 0". You can read his race report on his blog. One of Frank's coworkers Digit also raced finishing in 5:42:03 despite racing a few weeks early at City of Oaks. Deb Brondyke has also been quietly training for OBX over the summer months. She was able to post a strong 5:35:16 finishing time. Congrats to all three of you!
In the half marathon, we had several runners debuting at the distance. Scott and Leigh Ann Wingfield ran together the entire race. This was Leigh Ann's first half marathon, and she posted a very impressive 1:51:58, finishing 17th out of 380 runners in her division.
Laura Haynes and her son both ran the half as well. Her son finished in 1:54:09 and Laura in 2:04:34. I am not certain but I think this was the first half marathon for both of them. Great job Mom and son!
Mike Votava had an impressive race finishing in 2:03:09. About 30 seconds behind Mike came Sean Epps and Julian Martinez with times of 2:03:46. The Epps, Bullards, and Matrinez families made a weekend event of the race, taking in the ECU football game on Thursday, and then running on Sunday. Ingrid and Jennifer made their half marathon debuts as well, finishing in 2:36:54 and 2:38:55 respectively.
After spending a weekend in DC supporting Wanda, it was Michael Sohns turn to race. He did not disappoint when he finished in 2:15:49. I think we need to get Michael signed up for a marathon now!
Congrats to everyone! Glad to see so many people taking on new challenges and staying active. Do let the shorter days and colder weather keep you all inside. Keep hitting the roads.
1:51:57 Scott Wingfield
1:51:58 Leigh Wingfield
1:54:09 B Haynes
2:03:09 Mike Votava
2:03:46 Sean Epps
2:03:47 Julian Martinez
2:04:34 Laura Haynes
2:15:49 Michael Sohn
2:36:54 Ingrid Bullard
2:38:55 Jennifer Epps
Friday, November 06, 2009
Where: Harris Teeter
Time: 7:00 a.m.
Fluids: Bring your own fluids. Choose your own route.
Come out and join the group for a nice fall run. It should be nice cool running temps.
Thursday, November 05, 2009
First off, let me reiterate the comments of John about the support of this running group. Not living in Rocky Mount means interactions with the group are few and far between-but let me tell you I can feel the support from this group all the way in Greenville. So here is NYC from my perspective.
It all started with a 5:30 Ferry Ride to Staten Island with a bunch of runners and some interesting characters coming in from the night before(it was Halloween after all). Then there was the 3 hour wait in the runner’s village with John and I layered in throw-away sweats and trash bags. We laid there for 3 hours talking race strategy and trying to figure out if we could manage to poop something out before the “Johns” got too busy and nasty.
Finally it was time to line up at the starting lines with a view of the Verrazano Bridge, a whole bunch of confidence and of course some jitters we listened as they announced the lineup of professional runners and then we heard the starting gun which was followed by Ole Blue Eyes himself(never been so jacked to hear Sinatra).
Mile 1 was what I thought it would be, a straight incline that takes a toll on even the most experienced hill runner (I learned you can do all the hill repeats you want but there is no replicating the real deal). Mile 1 was also super crowded this was no surprise, John and I talked all weekend how the first mile would be slow but that we would take it slow and not try to make it up in one shot. We broke the first mile at a frantic 7:45..30 seconds off our race pace BUT good considering what we had been through . Well, lets just say John Batchelor was a beast on November 1st and there was no holding him back. I spent mile 2 chasing John, I thought if I would slow down so would John, that didn’t work. We broke mile 2(which was downhill) at a 6:40 pace…we just made up that first mile in ONLY mile 2! We then calmed down and ran the rest of Brooklyn(first 13 miles) at about a 7:10 pace.
As we reached Queens and the halfway point I felt different then any other race. My Quads. were fatigued and had been so for many miles. My plantar fasciitis and right ankle (previous injuries) were screaming. John and I continued to talk-we stayed positive I told him how good he looked(without his shirt….I mean running) and he tells me the same. Of course, in my mind it was becoming clear that I might make 3:10 today but its going to be much tougher than it was last time, because today is not my best day.
The Queensboro Bridge at Mile 16 leads you into Manhattan…this bridge is ridiculous and lead us to a mile split at 15 of 7:57. The downhill was much the same as our first bridge experience, a sprint to make up time, despite my better judgment. Internally I was battling between telling John to slow down to conserve energy or letting him go because he looked so strong and I didn’t want to hold him back. I choose the latter. We had trained together, we had talked about this race since June and I was gonna run it with him as long as I could.
Entering 1st avenue in Manhattan was amazing, the crowd support off that bridge was incredible and we made up that bridge easy (mile 16 7:02, mile 18 6:54). Our splits looked good, John looked strong but my quads were on fire. But I was almost to mile 20 maybe I can hang on I am still on pace for under 3:10. About the same time a lot of things happened-I guess we call it the wall. I have experienced the wall before and it was usually all mental this time it was physical too. In an evil twist put in by the organizers of this event no doubt-Another bridge-Willis Avenue bridge happens to be ahead, John is pulling away and for the first time today I felt like I was not keeping up, and the gradual incline of 1st avenue and the earlier bridges has made my quads reaching an all time-pain(so much I no longer was concentrating on my foot issues) and to top it off I glanced at my Garmin-the mileage lets me know that I am going to have to run much FURTHER than 26.2 miles (meaning I needed to pick up the pace EVEN faster).
I got to the top of the Willis Avenue bridge and all that came crashing on me-John had gotten too far ahead to wish him luck, so I stopped against the bridge and stretched my quads. Miles 20-22 were about 7:30’s and I remember even thinking near 22 if my watch and the race distance had matched up I may still have a shot. It was at that point I again noticed the variance in the distance, the burn in my quads., and maybe some pitty I felt for myself and the last 4 miles would just be about finishing. Retrospectively I know mentally I could have done a little better (I walked through the last 4 water stops) but I also remember the physical struggle I felt between 22-23.
A new muscle pain came in the form of cramps in my left calve- which just happened to happen at the mile point in the race where the tv camera man followed me the entire mile on a golf car. I took a GU shot at 23 and believe it or not no more cramps, maybe I should have done that a mile or 2 ago? That last 4 miles was through beautiful Central park but was no walk in the park and I hated being there (7:50, 8:38, 8:32, 8:36).
So I crossed the finish line with a time 7 minutes later than I wanted and a lot of questions. What if I had not stopped and stretched that first time, maybe I would not have stopped at all? What if I had stuck to my game plan and not tried to make up so much time and energy from the bridges, maybe my thighs would have not gotten to that point? Was that wall real or just in my head? What if I had taken caffeine GU’s more frequently like John did? Speaking of John, what if he didn’t realize the distance variance and never made Boston?
Of course he did, and that’s what this marathon was all about, it was the reason we picked such an aggressive training plan instead of leisurely enjoying the NYC experience. The reason I got up at 5 AM in Greenville every day since June because I knew he was doing the same in Richmond.
So while I am left questioning what went wrong for me in NYC, there are a couple of things I know for sure. First, this marathon is not like any other and I recommend all of you do it at least once. Second I have to come to peace with the fact that I lost 3 minutes or so in central park because of self-pity on not being able to reach a PR-this is really hard for someone with OCD. Third while we didn’t execute our game plan and run tangent lines both John and I were faster than our times by probably 2 minutes (so John probably had 3:08 stuff in him that day) given the extra distance. Lastly and most apparent is that no bridge or over paced mile , no smorgasbord of slower runners blocking the road, and no matter how hard I tried to steady the pace…on November 1, 2009 there was no stopping John.
Wednesday, November 04, 2009
Sorry for the slow response time, but I do have some tremendous news for the RMEC. Our club won the Best Rookie Team award for 2009; but that's not all. The RMEC also won the South Atlantic Division All Star Team award! Please note that is not just Nash County relay teams; this is the entire South Atlantic Division. We accomplished this award by raising the most dollars per team member.
All members worked hard and really put on a great showing for the RMEC. As Team Captain for 2009, I thank all members and supporters. THIS IS REALLY SOMETHING FOR RMEC TO BE PROUD OF!
The Committee Chairs also awarded Brian Lankford with the Purple Pillow award for his amazing performance and his touching motivation. Many thanks to Brian and his "ultra-trainer"/partner Frank.
Tuesday, November 03, 2009
THE GROUP RUN: Please join us for the Medoc Rerun on November 28th. It will be cold, there will be leaves on the ground, there will only be one fluid stop, and the course will be unmarked. It will be a challenge! We plan to start at 8:00 am., but you are welcome to start early or late.
COST: So, how much does it cost?
- $0 - Standard entry (includes trails GU, and one fluid stop)
- $10 - Regular entry (includes a finisher's medal, hat, and all you can eat GUs)
- $20 - Premium entry (includes a shirt, finisher's medal, hat, and all you can eat GUs)
MEDOC BAGS: We also have some Medoc "sack-pack" bags that are available to runners. If you are interested, in one of these they are $5 each. We will limit these to one per person, unless there are still extras.
WHO CAN RUN: Everyone! This is a group run. Even if you raced already, come join us! There are lots of you who did not get a chance to run the official Medoc Trail Races, so we are hopeful to get a BIG crowd out for the Rerun. I honestly would not be surprised if we end up with 50 runners.
WHAT IF I CANT MAKE IT?: The Rerun is based on the honor system. If you can't be there on 11/28, you can still earn a medal and finishers hat. Sign up like everyone else, but indicate you will not be there on the Rerun date. This way we will set aside your "goodies"
INVENTORY: We do not know how much we have of everything yet. There are plenty of medals, and I estimate about 30 hats, and maybe 20 shirts.
AWARDS: Yes, we have extra awards too, so we will find some way to give out pint glasses as well. This in no way is intended to diminish those who earned awards on race day. We just don't need a box of glasses collecting dust in my garage.
WHY CHARGE ANYTHING?: Keep in mind, you can come do the Rerun for FREE. The only cost is for those who wish to take home some of the race swag, and we are actually under charging. You must remember that the RMEC is a non-profit organization. Any proceeds collected from the Rerun go directly into the Medoc race budget. This is exactly what we did last year as well.
SIGNING UP: Post a comment here if you plan to join us. One comment per person will be helpful. I need to know the following:
- Distance: 10M, 26.2, Other
- Entry Type: See above
- Shirt Size (if applicable): list 1st & 2nd choice (if you are willing to take a different size)
- Medoc Bag: Yes/No
For shirt size, list a 1st and 2nd choice in case it is not available (Only put a second choice if you are willing to take a different size). If you know you will not be there on 11/28, let us know that as well.
In our first spring session, we trained the children with the Fun Run for Charities as a goal race. In the fall session, we had picked out another target race, but that event was canceled due to some course issues that came up late. So this left the RMEK without a local race. . .
What Tracy is planning is to host a RMEK final race festival at the Red Oak Park jogging trail. The tentative details are:
- Where: Red Oak Park
- Date: 11/21/09
- Time: 10:00 am
- Distance: 1.5 mile and 5k
Tracy needs your help to pull this event off. It would be easy just to have the kids show up, run a few laps and send them home. . . but that is not "special". We want these kids to feel great about completing the program, improving their fitness level, and setting a positive example for other kids to follow.
We need your suggestions, time, and help to pull this off. Please post comments here and/or email Tracy. "Race day" will likely be about two hours of time, and that includes setting up and cleaning up. I will plan the RMEC group run to start and finishes at the park, so we can be there to help set up and cheer. I hope you will all try to join in the fun.
Monday, November 02, 2009
Battleship Half Marathon: Jeff Hartney had a tune up race on Sunday in Wilmington where he raced the Battleship Half Marathon. Despite a hot and very humid day, Jeff managed to finish in sixth place overall with a time of 1:26:48 (6:38 pace). Keep in mind, that is is sixth place out of 1100 finishers! Levi Moore finished in 147th place by clocking a 1:51:56 on the course.
City of Oaks Half Marathon: Jon Shingleton and Amber Poole were also having a tune up race in North Carolina this weekend. Both returned to the City of Oaks Half Marathon for a rainy race. The rain did little to slow them down as Jon posted a 2:15:39, and Amber a 2:16:27. This is a new PR for Jon by 11 minutes, and Amber set a PR for the City of Oaks course. Both will be joining Jeff Hartney in two weeks at the Richmond Marathon.
New York City Marathon: John Bachelor and Derek Hurdle also raced on Sunday when they took on the five boroughs of New York City. Many of us were eagerly tracking them online as we knew John was trying to qualify for Boston. Derek and John were stride-for-stride for about the first 19 miles of the race. Derek began to cramp and John pulled ahead.
John needed to average a 7:17.4 pace for the race. With about four miles to go in the race he was 25 seconds off the 3:10:59 time he needed to qualify. Realizing his GPS watch was measuring long, he knew he needed to make up time fast! At this point his pace was about 7:18.5. That sounds close, but losing one second per mile for 22 miles adds up.
So John turns on the jets running his last four miles in 7:10, 7:19, 7:06 and 6:47! The end result. . . John qualifies with a time of 3:10:29. Close behind John, came Derek posting an equally impressive 3:17:52. I expect Derek's pacing of John was a major factor to his qualifying time.
John has now posted the fastest time for the RMEC. This also means that so far Derek, John, Jeff M., and Jeff H. all have qualifying times for Boston. 2010 should be a great year!
Elites: If you missed the New York City Marathon, you missed a great race! Meb Keflizighi claimed the men's title, becoming the first American to win the race since 1982! He decided to wear his USA singlet instead of a normal sponsor top. As he ran through Central Park coming up to the finish line he waved at the crowd, and proudly pointed to the USA across his chest. He know what a big deal this was for not only himself, but also for the US. Great job Meb!