Sean's Running Blog

Grandma's Marathon

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Location:

Snoqualmie,WA,

Member Since:

Feb 24, 2007

Gender:

Male

Goal Type:

Local Elite

Running Accomplishments:

  • 2011 Boston Marathon -- 2:27 (Top 50)
  • 2011 Steilacoom 20k -- 1:04:57 (1st)
  • 2010 Indianapolis Monumental Marathon -- 2:26 (7th) 
  • 2010 Fall City 10k -- 31:06 (1st)
  • 2009 Indy Mini Marathon -- 1:07:53 (7th)
  • 2009 WWU Invitational -- 10000m (30:58)
  • 2009 UW Indoor Meet -- 5000m (14:49)
  • 2008 Orem Turkey Run -4 miler -- 19:55 (1st)
  • 2008 Seafair Torchlight 8k--25:03 (3rd) 
  • 2008 Time to Fly 5k -- 15:35 (1st)
  • 2008 Newport Marathon -- 2:22:47 (1st)
  • Steilacoom 15M--1:18:30 (1st)
  • 2007 Olympic Trials -- 2:30:41 (91st)
  • 2007 St. George --2:18:55 (3rd)

Short-Term Running Goals:

  • Feb 23 -- Ft Steilacoom 15M
  • March 23  – Ft. Steilacoom 20k
  • April 15  – Boston Marathon
  • June 8 – Sound to Narrows 12k
  • June 22  – Grandma’s Half Marathon (USATF Champs.)
  • July 7 – Run of the Mill 5k
  • July 27 – Torchlight 8k
  • September – SJJ Half (maybe)
  • October/November – Fall Marathon (maybe)
  • December – Club XC Nationals

Long-Term Running Goals:

 Stay healthy

Personal:

Ran track my junior and senior years in high school and cross country my senior year. Went to BYU but did not run. Served LDS church mission to San Bernardino, CA. Started running again in April 2005. Marathon debut was St. George in 2005.

I coach the Mount Si High School Track Team (distance)

Been married for almost 17 years. My wife, Mara, and I have four kids ages 16, 14, 13 and 11.

Miles:This week: 0.00 Month: 0.00 Year: 0.00
Brooks T5 Lifetime Miles: 34.00
Ravenna Lifetime Miles: 250.00
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
169.7542.0020.600.00232.35
Brooks Infinity Black #1 Miles: 32.00Brooks Inifinity Black #2 Miles: 115.75Brooks ST3 Racer #2 Miles: 12.00Brooks ST3 Racer #3 Miles: 30.60ST4 Miles: 42.00
Weight: 142.38
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
23.500.000.000.0023.50

I had an early flight this morning to NYC for a quick business trip. Monday is my double day which made trying to catch a 6:35am flight that much harder. I decided to get up at 3am and get 10 in at home and shoot for 12-14 more once I arrived in NYC. It's the first time I've run in the dark in quite some time. It was kind of cool though. We are so far north that the sun rises very early in June. It was 3:30 when I noticed the first light on the horizon. By 4:15 I didn't need my headlamp anymore. Crazy how early it gets light here and how long it stays light in the evenings. Of course, the flip side is it's dark as early as 4pm in mid December on the classic rainy evening.

Long but OK flight to NYC. I was upgraded to 1st Class so that gave me a bit more room to stretch and stretch out during the flight. Got to my hotel and got caught up on email before heading out to Central Park. So many fantastic memories of Central Park that will forever be engraved in my brain. It's still weird to run by the boathouse. Every time I run in Central Park, I go the opposite direction which is how we ran it at the Olympic Trials. Many of the mile markers are still visible on the pavement. My favorites are the "1 mile to go" the 800m and the 400m to go. I have to admit that running the course today got me a little extra excited about the upcoming marathon. I'm no more certain 2:19 is within my reach, but I'm a bit more excited. I get to run one more time in Central Park tomorrow morning before I head off for meetings and then back home for a workout on Wednesday.

Brooks Infinity Black #1 Miles: 10.00Brooks Inifinity Black #2 Miles: 13.50
Weight: 0.00
Comments(2)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.000.000.000.0012.00

A beautiful morning in NYC. It was a tad on the muggy side but it was another wonderful stroll through central park. It's such a great getaway from the noise and chaos of the city.

Brooks Inifinity Black #2 Miles: 12.00
Weight: 0.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
8.000.004.000.0012.00

An ugly workout this morning. I got home last night from NYC at 12:30am. Got about 5 hours of sleep before the birds were chirping in my ear. I checked the forecast and we have a heat advisory out today. Temps were to reach the low 90s with some humidity thrown in for good measure. That is flat out scorching for around here, especially in June.

So I decided to beat the heat and do my speed workout this morning at 7:15am after dropping my daughter off at school.

The workout was 3x2M @5:00-5:04 with four minutes rest between intervals. Easy enough, right? Well, not so much. By the end of mile 1 (5:02) I knew I was in big trouble. The temp was already 70 degrees and the heat index was 76 with some wind. Mile 2 was a respectable 5:06 but my legs were 100% lead. You could have unleashed a grizzly bear behind me and I would not have been able to get my legs to move any faster. I did the math and I had spent 13 of the previous 36 hours sitting on an airplane and gotten no better than 5 hours of sleep either night. Not such a great way to optimize for a successful workout. Oh well.  

So I did the second rep and finished in 10:25. Not pretty. I spent the 4 minute jog wondering whether to go on. I tried the third rep twice and both times stopped after an 80 second lap. No sense to risking something just to get a third rep in that would have the effort of a 5:00 but no where near the result.

I used to get all worked up about workouts like this but once or twice a year I bail early on a workout and i'm fine with that.

Oh...it's 89 degrees outside right now. Running in this would have been even worse.  

Brooks ST3 Racer #2 Miles: 12.00
Weight: 0.00
Comments(3)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.000.000.000.0012.00

Another lovely morning. Upper 50s and sunny skies at 5:15am. I was actually planning on running this afternoon but this dumb crow planted his noisy self by our bedroom window and I couldn't go back to sleep. Nice to have the run out of the way though. Everything felt great today. No glute problems and I felt a lot stronger than yesterday.

Brooks Infinity Black #1 Miles: 12.00
Weight: 0.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
10.000.000.000.0010.00

First signs of a taper. Just 10 miles today. I'm on the way down...slowly. Retired my Infinities with today's run. On to the next pair.

Brooks Infinity Black #1 Miles: 10.00
Weight: 0.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
8.008.001.500.0017.50

Slowly starting the taper. Workout today wasx 8M @ marathon pace (5:18) followed by 10-15 minute jog and then 10x one minute hard/one minute easy. Miles 1-5 were exactly each 5:18. 6 was 5:19 and 7 and 8 were 5:17. So pacing was really good. I've been battling some morning stuffiness and congestion which reared its head during the workout but I expect to have it all cleared up in the next two weeks.

Brooks ST3 Racer #3 Miles: 4.00Brooks Inifinity Black #2 Miles: 13.50
Weight: 0.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.000.000.000.0012.00

12 miles through the neighborhood this morning. Nice weather. No double today. Taper time.

Brooks Inifinity Black #2 Miles: 12.00
Weight: 0.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.000.000.000.0012.00

A pretty warm day today. 79 degrees by the time I got out for my run. Felt nice. Did some soft trail running and the standard pavement.

Brooks Inifinity Black #2 Miles: 12.00
Weight: 0.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
5.006.001.000.0012.00

Speed workout today at the Redmond HS track. 6M@ marathon pace followed by a 10-12 minute easy jog then 6x1 minute hard/1 minute light. Then a mile cool down.

Pretty warm again. 70+ degrees. First 4 miles felt fine. Practiced taking water at 1 and 3 and again at 5. Managed to do that very well getting 8 ounces down each time. But Mile 6 I just didn't have it and dropped to a 5:23 mile...five seconds off pace. I just felt tired which is not a good sign. It was a little discouraging but I will reserve judgement until after Saturday's race simulation workout.

Brooks ST3 Racer #3 Miles: 12.00
Weight: 142.00
Comments(1)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
0.000.000.000.000.00

Rest Day

Weight: 0.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
12.000.000.000.0012.00

Glorious day today. Felt extra fresh coming off of a rest day.

Brooks Inifinity Black #2 Miles: 12.00
Weight: 140.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
8.005.001.000.0014.00

Cool and beautiful morning for my penultimate speed workout. Another marathon simulation workout. 5M @ 5:15-5:18 + 1M hard. Hit all five in the 5:13-5:18 range and they all felt really good. Set up water stations and took 6+ ounces at 1,3 and 5. So I'm watering well. The final mile was in 5:00 so that felt nice especially considering the miserable workoute at Redmond HS on Wednesday. Feeling much better about things.

Sunday night I fly to SFO for Monday meetings and then back that night. So I will get one last run along Embarcadero before the race.

ST4 Miles: 14.00
Weight: 143.00
Comments(1)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
9.000.000.000.009.00

Nine wonderful miles along the Embarcadero this morning.

Brooks Inifinity Black #2 Miles: 9.00
Weight: 0.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
5.004.000.000.009.00

4 mediocre marathon pace miles at the Redmond HS track. I'm beginning to despise that facility. Haven't had a good workout there in a while. Final workout before Grandma's. Feeling pretty good although I have my doubts about maintaining 5:18s for 26 miles. Here is the list of elites planning to run on Saturday. Very few Americans. Weather forecast not perfect but not terrible either. Chance of morning showers. Morning temps in the mid 50s rising to low to mid 60s by the mid morning. The wind is predicted to be a crosswind. Good cloud cover but 99% humidity. Should be interesting. 8 miles easy tomorrow before jumping the plane Thursday morning. Rest day Thursday. 5 miles on Friday.

2009 Marathon Elite Men

First Name

Last Name

Age

Country

PR

David

Cheruiyot

39

Kenya

2:10:33

Francis

Kipketer

33

Kenya

2:10:47

Benson

Cheruiyot

26

Kenya

2:11:33

Augustus

Kavutu

31

Kenya

2:11:34

John

Njoroge

24

Kenya

2:11:51

Christopher

Toroitich

28

Kenya

2:11:58

Teklu

Deneke

29

Ethiopia

2:12:00

Peter

Gilmore

32

USA

2:12:45

Halefom

Abebe

26

Ethiopia

2:12:52

Josphat

Chemjor

32

Kenya

2:13:11

Lamech

Mokono

28

Kenya

2:13:39

Gideon

Mutisya

42

Kenya

2:13:40

Patrick

Kiptum

37

Kenya

2:13:42

Christopher

Kipkering

25

Kenya

2:13:42

Gilbert

Koech

28

Kenya

2:13:43

David

Tuwei

30

Kenya

2:13:44

Abebe

Yimer

28

Ethiopia

2:13:52

Tesfaye

Dirba

25

Ethiopia

2:14:00

James

Kariuki

33

Kenya

2:14:00

Jynocel

Basweti

22

Kenya

2:14:02

Charles

Kanyao

33

Kenya

2:14:14

Genna

Tufa

24

Ethiopia

2:14:20

Armond

Kemei

24

Kenya

2:14:34

Stephen

Ariga

35

Kenya

2:14:54

Haron

Bor

30

Kenya

2:15:00

Richard

Kessio

35

Kenya

2:15:10

John

Tubei

33

Kenya

2:15:23

Kennett

Kiptoo

29

Kenya

2:15:39

Isaiah

Sanga

31

Kenya

2:15:42

Christopher

Raabe

30

Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
8.000.000.000.008.00

Nice run but a double shot of bad news. I got a blood draw last week to check my iron levels and they are really low which my explain some of the sluggishness and lackluster workouts of late. Since it's my first time getting the test done, I don't know whether I'm at my normal levels or whether I have dipped lately. Either way, they are low. Not much you can do three days out to boost iron levels. So it is what it is. I'm also getting a head cold...the kind where everything neck up aches. Ugh. We'll see how things go. Travel day tomorrow.

Brooks Inifinity Black #2 Miles: 8.00
Weight: 142.00
Comments(4)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
5.250.000.000.005.25

Nice morning in Duluth. Fog and mid 50s, exactly what is expected for the race tomorrow. Everything feels fine mechanically. I'm still battling head congestion but we'll see if it has any negative affect. It doesn't when running 6:45 miles. :-)

Still undecided what pace I'm going to go after. 2:19 is on the very edge of realistic at best. My numbers at other distances just don't pencil out to a 2:19. That's not to say it isn't possible, but A LOT of things would have to go right. So I won't hesitate to back off gtom 5:18s to 5:20-5:21s early if it feels like OTQ pace is just too fast. The problem is that if you go out too slow you don't have time to make it back up. If you go out too fast, you risk blowing up in the end.

We shall see.

Brooks Inifinity Black #2 Miles: 5.25
Weight: 143.00
Comments(3)
Race: Grandma's Marathon (19.69 Miles) 01:51:43
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
0.0019.000.000.0019.00

DNF

I promised myself two summers ago after running the only other marathon I have dropped out of that I would never run another summer marathon.

My hotel was at Mile 22. When I woke up this morning at 5:00am, the temperature read 68 degrees. Skies were crystal clear. I knew right then that Plan B was a very likely result. So much for the predicted morning fog and mid 50s temperature.

At the starting line, the Red Flag was up which indicates the highest level of a heat advisory. Nice. Temp at the 7:30 start was already 70 degrees with humidity in the 80% range and the wind was a quartering headwind. As we watched the wheelchair racers take off, I was sweating just standing there.

For the first mile there must have been a pack of 50-60 people...mostly Kenyans. It was a nice wind shield. Everyone was going out conservativley. First mile was in 5:22. The front guys were maybe 2 or 3 seconds ahead of that. So very conservative. It was at this point I threw off my 2:19 wristband. Yep. Plan B which was basically, run a respectable 5:25 pace or so and see how I felt halfway. My dad was there to cheer me on.

Mile 2 -- 5:26 -- Felt fine but was already very thirsty. Lips and mouth were dry. I was actually excited to get to Mile 3 and get my water bottle. Still a pretty large pack of as at this point but the lead pack had put about a 10 second gap on us.

Mile 3 -- 5:24 -- Still feeling OK but very uncertain about what lie ahead. Grandma's has learned a few things over the years. They actually put the mile markers either well before or well after the water stations so that people can get their splits and their water. Grabbed my special concoction of Nuun Water and gulped down all 8 ounces. This was big.

Mile 4 -- 5:28 -- Dropped a little bit of pace but at this point I was not bothered. There was a pack of about 5-6 of us that had settled in to this 5:25ish pace and were happy to see that through to as far as we could. The lead pack of about 20-25 was well ahead of us now, probably 30-45 seconds. There was a group of three guys between us and the lead pack which included MN native Chris Lundstrom a 2:17 guy.

Mile 5 -- 5:24 -- Another much anticipated water station. Threw down 8 ounces of Gatorade. Felt good. Tasted strong. I was replacing fluids quite well.

Mile 6 -- 5:23 -- This was the first point I seriously considered dropping out. My head was not cooling off. the humidity, heat and wind were weakening me quickly. I'm simply not used to this kind of weather and there really isn't a way for me to prepare for it which is why I try to avoid it in the first place. My feet were sloshing in sweat-soaked shoes already. But I carried on. Our pack was now four guys.

Mile 7 -- 5:25 -- While I was still on Plan B pace, each mile was taking more effort just to maintain 5:25s. Got another bottle of Nuun Water and downed all of it.

Mile 8 -- 5:20 -- Not sure where this mile came from. Must have been a last ditch effort to try and stick with it. Saw my dad again and this was the first time I told him I may be dropping.

Mile 9 -- 5:33 -- Fading. Downed another 8 ounces of Gatorade but fading. Our pack was now 3 and it didn't look like it would last much longer. I was going to drop here, but saw that several Kenyans had just dropped and so I pressed on thinking there was an outside chance to get in the top 10 and win some money. I would have had I been able to hold on to even 5:30 pace.

Mile 10 -- 5:23 -- A few more Kenyans drop.

Mile 11 -- 5:40 -- Wheels start coming off but more people are dropping. I hang in. Probably a mistake.

Mile 12-14 -- 16:54 an average of 5:38 -- Forgot to stop my watch for three miles. A signal my head was now leaving me. Would have been the ideal time to drop. But I was told I was in the top 15 still and 10th gets $1,000. So I pressed on.

Mile 15 -- 5:45 -- Wheel #2 is now off.  

Mile 16 -- 5:49 -- There goes wheel number 3.

Mile 17 -- 6:01 -- All wheels now off. Should have dropped here because i wasn't going to see my dad again until Mile 19.

Mile 18 -- 6:15 -- I knew I was dropping at this point so I just jogged it in trying to keep lose but limit my marathon recovery.

Mile 19 -- 6:35 -- Still jogging and happy to see my dad. I was done. Showered and bolted for the airport to catch an earlier flight and see my family.

A few thoughts:

  • Was I frustrated? Yes and no. MN is a long way to go to DNF. But I did all I could both in training and during the race. The frustration is less with this race and more with the distance itself. As everyone on this blog knows the marathon is tricky. You train for months and months for one race and then on race day, so many things can go wrong: weather, illness, injury, etc. And it's not like you can have a bad race and then go run another one a week or two later like you can in the case of a 5k, 10k or even a half marathon. It's a lot of eggs in one basket. 
  • The great news is I drank very successfully. I had 8 ounces of fluid every two miles which is something I've never been able to do before. So the trip to Duluth may have been worth it just to discover this.
  • Grandma's Marathon is a beautiful course better organized than any race I have run of any distance. The elite perks were simple but awesome. The crowd support was phenomenal and I missed the best parts...through downtown and the finish. It's great to see a town get behind an event like this. It reminded me of St. George in that way. It's just too bad the timing of this race is when it is. Late June in the upper midwest is increasingly not conducive to ideal running weather. This is the 4th or 5th year in a row that warm weather has been a major factor.
  • While the course is a net downhill of about 150 feet, I would not consider it aided. It's got several uphills and lots of rollers. It's a very fair course but I wouldn't consider it crazy fast.
  • The winner, Chris Rabbe, had a huge PR (2:15) and won by more than 3 minutes. He is a native Minnesotan which may explain why he was the only one in the Top 25 who PR'd.
  • I learned later on that race officials briefly, but seriously considered canceling the race due to weather. I think they made the right call to carry on.
  • 2:19 is likely not attainable which may shape my plans moving forward. I'm going to spend the next few weeks easing back into things. I'm going to focus on getting my iron levels up to where they should be and do all of the extra exercise and core stregthening things I need to do to be in absolute tip top shape. Then I may give it one more shot in Baltimore or Hartford or even Nashville in December. I missed quite a few local races this year training for Grandma's and I don't want to do that again chasing a goal that is not attainable. But before completely giving up on OTQ, I'm going to go through one more cycle, focus on my nutrition, namely iron levels, and give it maybe one more shot.
  • One more thought...why DNF? Everyone has different goals entering a race: BQ, OTQ, hit a certain time, land in a certain place, win prize money or simply finish. I'm not at a point where finishing a marathon is all that exciting to me. I didn't fly 1400 miles across the country to finish a marathon. I could do that much closer to home. I went, first, to OTQ. Second was to get a high place and possibly win some money. When both of those goals went out the window due to conditions beyond my control, I had a decision to make. By dropping I cut my losses and allowed myself a much shorter recovery period which will allow me to do some other races in the next couple of weeks that I want to do...maybe even the Seattle RNR this coming Saturday.

ST4 Miles: 19.00
Weight: 0.00
Comments(17)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
6.000.000.000.006.00

6 easy on a soft surface this afternoon. Legs are very heavy. Not so sure this will be the short recovery I had hoped for.

Brooks Inifinity Black #2 Miles: 6.00
Weight: 0.00
Add Comment
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
8.000.000.000.008.00

Another 8 today. Beautiful day. Again felt pretty spent. I think I underestimated the toll the heat took on me Saturday. I'm going to take the next two days off and see how I feel.

Brooks Inifinity Black #2 Miles: 8.00
Weight: 0.00
Comments(1)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
4.500.000.000.004.50

After two days off from running I ran a wonderful 4.5 this morning mostly to assess whether running in the RNR 1/2 marathon tomorrow was going to be doable. Well, everything felt great. I ran 1/2 mile at pace and it seemed to feel OK. Now racing 13 miles tomorrow might feel a lot different, but I feel a lot better than I did on Monday and Tuesday. So I'm going to give it a go tomorrow and we'll see how long I can hang on with Paul.

BTW...Paul Tergat and NICOLAS KOECH both scratched so the former world record holder is now out of the picture. The elite coordinator was very upset about it but I think the race will go on just fine without him.

I toured the course and it won't be all that bad. The entirety of Mile 4 is uphill but the elevation map makes the course look hillier than it it is.

Brooks Inifinity Black #2 Miles: 4.50
Weight: 143.00
Comments(2)
Race: Seattle Rock and Roll Half Marathon (13.1 Miles) 01:08:58, Place overall: 7, Place in age division: 7
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
1.500.0013.100.0014.60

Well...I beat Paul in his homestate in May and he beat me in my home state in June. Seems fair I guess.

A beautiful day for running. 56 degrees at the start and not a cloud in the sky. A dreamy day for the race organizers of this inaugural race.

Caught up with Paul briefly prior to the race. It's always good to chat with him. There was a woman in the race with a 1:08 PR in the half which had me a bit nervous.  

Race started just a couple of minutes late. First mile was pretty much flat through the industrial part of Tukwila, just south of Seattle. By the Mile 1 marker there was already a lead pack and a chase pack. Crossed in 5:14. Perfect. Mile 2 was more of the same...industrial Tukwila. Slight uphill as we crossed over I-5 but right back down. Hit mile two in 5:15. Perfect again.

Mile 3 was more uphill than I remembered from my course tour the day prior. It wasn't anything crazy at all, but it was a slight incline virtually the whole way. By this time, the lead pack had gapped me pretty good. From this point on it was me and a local running friend Destry Johnson in our pack of two. We picked off a few guys in Mile 3 who wanted some camera time and went out way too fast. Despite the gentle uphill we hit Mile 3 in 5:12. Very happy at this point.

Mile 4 was basically flat and through the neighborhoods of south Seattle. This the was last mile that Destry and I passed anyone. From Mile 4 on we didn't pass anyone and no one passed us. Hit Mile 4 in 5:11.

Mile 5 was the hardest of all the miles. It's a steady 2-3% grade uphill the entire mile. I generally run well uphill but this is one of those points in the race you have to be really careful because you have almost nothing to gain by going too hard and a ton to lose by doing so. Crossed the mile marker in 5:48. Much slower than I thought but I think the mile marker was off as my watch had us at 1.05 for that mile and my watch is usually never off that badly.

Mile 6 plummets down to Lake Washington. It has one of those short downhill stretches that is so steep that you can't really get the full benefit of the downhill. All the elevation we gained over one mile we gave back in less than 1/4 mile. The next few miles are along a beautiful stretch of Lake Washington. Again, it was a race organizers dream. Mile 6 came in at 5:00 which was pretty easy to understand given the downhill stretch. Destry is a much better downhill runner I learned.

Mile 7-9 are all along Lake Washington. Again...just gorgeous...however the beauty has its risks. This stretch is littered with "S" turns that can lenghthen the race by a ton. So Destry amd I focused on running the tangents. There is no prize for running 13.3. My coach is the one who measured the course and he warned me about this stretch. He measured mile 7 the correct way (shortest possible route) and then measured it again following the centerline. The difference in the two measurements over just one mile was a staggering 100 meters! So run the tangents people. 100 meters is 20-35 seconds depending on your pace and that was for just one mile. Miles 7, 8 and 9 came in at 5:09, 5:27, 5:26. The only explanation I have for the slower miles is the wind did kick up off the lake and we were exposed to that more than I expected. I also think the markers may have been off. Mile 8 is where I really started to feel the effects of Grandma's. My calves were screaming way earlier than normal. At this point I was pretty sure I wasn't going to be able to stay with Destry.

Mile 10 starts with a VERY abrupt uphill as we climbed to the I-90 tunnel. It's probably a hundred meters in length but very, very steep. Once you get to the top you enter the I-90 tunnel which was really weird. There was a band playing at the far end of the tunnel and the echoing noise was eerie especially since you couldn't see the end of the tunnel around the bend. Mile 10 marker was inside the tunnel. Destry and I crossed at 5:10. Quicker than I thought.

Mile 11...pretty flat ending with a pretty aggressive downhill portion as we headed toward Safeco Field. Mark Mandi, a local elite guy had been showing signs of weakening and we were reeling him in. He was less than 100 meters in front of us now. Mile 11 was in 5:10 as well.

Mile 12 was through the heart of downtown Seattle. A little bit of up and down. Pretty gentle. Destry was starting to gap me...probably 15 meters ahead at this point. I was just about ready to concede at this point. Crossed Mile 12 at 5:10.

With a mile to go, we went down a really steep hill as we approached the Alaskan Way viaduct. This was a turning point in the race for me. Up to this point, Destry had crushed me on every downhill stretch. This time, he didn't gap me at all and I was right on his heels headed into a brief uphill stretch that put us onto the viaduct. It was here where I passed him. But Destry is a competitor and once we got onto the viaduct and it flattedned out, he passed me one more time and took the lead with about 3/4 of a mile to go. With 1/2 mile to go, we hit one final downhill stretch coming off of the viaduct and I passed him as I started to make a final move to beat him. As we made the final turn the finish line was about 250 meters away. It seemed a lot farther than that. Destry and I were now in an all out sprint for the finish. I pulled away a bit and with 150 or so to go looked back and felt like I had him beat. Then I looked back with about 75 meters to go and he was right there giving it one last push. I managed to hold him off across the finish but it was a fantastic race. Mile 13 was in 5:07...a strong finish.

Finishing time was 1:08:58. Destry was just one second behind. I ended up only a few seconds behind Mark Mandi. Another 1/2 mile and we both would have had him.

Finished 7th overall. 5th american and third Washingtonian. So I just missed out on the money. Oh well.

Destry is a good friend and I love racing with him because we are so similar in ability and style. He totally pushed me to a sub 1:09 finish which I didn't expect given my partially recovered state. So thanks to Destry for pushing me the whole way.

Great race. Great organization. Good course. Very scenic and not as difficult as I would have expected.

Congrats to Paul on the nice PR. Amazing what a little extra oxygen will do. He ran a very smart race and knew when to back off the leaders. While he was in sight at the finish, he smoked me.

As I sit here, my calves are wasted. I'm just glad I'm sitting here in my kitchen and don't have to get on an airplane. Ugh.

I have serious doubts about running the Logan 15k next weekend. We shall see.

 

Brooks ST3 Racer #3 Miles: 14.60
Weight: 142.00
Comments(9)
Easy MilesMarathon Pace MilesThreshold MilesVO2 Max MilesTotal Distance
169.7542.0020.600.00232.35
Brooks Infinity Black #1 Miles: 32.00Brooks Inifinity Black #2 Miles: 115.75Brooks ST3 Racer #2 Miles: 12.00Brooks ST3 Racer #3 Miles: 30.60ST4 Miles: 42.00
Weight: 142.38

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