Sunday, November 26, 2006

Seattle Marathon







The Results:
I broke 5:45! A PR with 5:41:44. That was official time, not chip time - apparently it didn't get my chip at the end. A big thanks to Jenny for helping me reach a PR. We kept moving the entire time - when one of us took a restroom break, the other kept walking. It was great - Jenny is cheerful and chatty through out and once again kept me entertained.

The Race:
I felt good through this race - right up till about mile 24. I didn't hurt as much as at UWR, I didn't get as tired as that one either. I probably had the most energy at Portland - but that was the first of three in two months, and also took me the longest to do.

The Course:
I really liked this course. Yes, there were a lot of hills in the last eight miles, but the course is beautiful and challenging. I really like the arboretum - absolutely gorgeous. It was also fun to run out on the I90 floating bridge and back. If I could pick the weather, I'd run it again. Which leads to...

The Weather:
I woke up to calm. Within five minutes though, slushy freezing rain was hitting the skylight, followed by snow. We met at the Y, where we picked up Jenny and Rob. We formed a caravan with Riley and Heather in one car (Riley had to leave after he saw Eric come in to get back home and go to work), George and Emily and Emily's parents, and Jane and Ray. We left the Y and drove in nasty freezing rain or snow all the way in. This slowed us down considerably, causing George, Riley and Ray to leap out of the cars and run to their start. The rest of us slowly made our way over to the Center House to use indoor plumbing and stay warm. We left that nice spot and went back into the pouring rain to the start. Once there, we discovered that the bag check was far away, and we only had minutes to the start. We loaded poor Heather down like a sherpa and sent her to the bag check and we all joined the crowd (Eric, Rob, Jane, Jenny and me). It rained the first two hours, then let up through Seward park (probably another hour), then started again. We were squishy wet when we came in. My new jacket and the tights I bought at the Expo worked very well and kept me warm right up till we hit that wind. Even then the jacket was good. The worst was after we left the last aid station and turned the corner into a giant wind tunnel. Oh, that was cold! Walking from the finish to the support area, and then from there back to Center house, we were in snow again.

The Support:
First we had the wonderful George (yes, the same George who helped us out in Portland) at mile eight to cheer us on and offer us snacks. Then we passed him again at 18, this time joined by the equally wonderful Wendy (also the same Portland supporter). We handed off our handheld water bottles there. Then, the last aid station on the course, also known as The Very Best Aid Station on the course was manned by the Coast Guard, led by the fearless Amy of the Y Run Club (also a Lt. Commander in the Coast Guard) and manned by other Y runners: Margaret, George (one and the same), Wendy (also the same), and Rick. I know Emily and her parents had the early shift there too. They were awesome and so much fun to see with only .6 of a mile to go.

The Heart:
Although I didn't want to admit it to Jenny, since we were on track for a PR, I started feeling the first signs of my heart issues at about mile 24. This is the first time I experienced this in a marathon. I could feel it getting a little hard to breath (just a little) and I could feel the pain starting in my back. I had trouble keeping my hr below 160 on this course - my average was 157, and my high was 169. When it did go over 160 I had very good luck bringing back down by using Pilates breathing. (It's a mad skill I've developed). I know the symptoms very well and was monitoring it closely - had they kept progressing, I would have walked. I don't know if I had trouble because I was cold and wet, because the hills at the beginning came too soon (which has proved a problem in the past) or because I am tired after three races. Regardless, I finished well, and am feeling fine now. I'll have to go very easy for the next couple of weeks though.

The Plan:
The Last Chance Marathon on December 31 is my next one. I'll run it easy and shoot for that 6 hour mark. See my new race schedule on the right for the rest of the plan (I've registered for Eugene so far).

Finally:
Eric pulled in at 3:28:07. Nice job honey!

35 comments:

robtherunner said...

It was fun today, mostly. Great job out there and whether you will admit it or not I think you still have room to get even better. I think experience and some more training over the next year will bring your time down even more. Have fun with Pilates and I am hoping for snow. Maybe I'll join you for Pilates on Friday.

Aleks said...

Wow, great job on the PR! I am inspired by your completed and list of to be completed marathons. Your dedication is incredible. Can't wait to follow the progress over the year!

Darrell said...

What a bunch of troopers you all are. A PR in those conditions is so sweet. I can't even imagine running a marathon in those conditions, but I guess you are used to it.

A big congrats on a race well run and for being so speedy with the race report. Keep an eye on that heart thing, you've been a very ambitious runner lately.

justrun said...

Wow! Congrats on a great race and for toughing it out in the weather!!
You take care of yourself, now, understand?! :) (That's me being the bossy, internet kid.)

Ironayla said...

I am so excited for you! Ending as a maniac and a PR! Jenny & you rocked!

Rest up and relax a bit!!

Congrats to Eric as well!

Sarah said...

Awesome job! Congrats on your PR! I find that once I'm out there its never as bad as I imagined. But you definitely have my admiration for running a marathon in those conditions. : )

Give my congrats to Eric too!

Jack said...

Congrats on your PR, way to go in tough conditions. Sound like you have a lot of fun events coming up, enjoy!

olga said...

Michelle, congrats on a great race to all of you! And welcome to the club:)

TryAthlete said...

Congratulations on your PR. Well done!

Wes said...

Nicely done, Michelle! Way to stay in touch with your body, and getting a PR on your third is just awesome!! Did you enjoy running in the rain :-) I doubt it. Rain is one thing. Rain and cold another entirely! Congrats!!

teacherwoman said...

Way to go on your race!

Robb said...

Another marathon on the books. One year ago did you ever imagine you would have run 3 marathons in 2006...maybe 4 if you squeeze that one in on the 31st??

Amazing. Really amazing.

Lana said...

Congrats! Great job on the PR - you are amazing!

Love the pics!

Anonymous said...

Wahoo!! Way to go, Michelle! Interesting comment about the pilates breathing..I've been doing the same without really thinking about it. And watch that pain, will you????

D said...

Well done and congrats on not only completing the marathon (another one so soon!) but PRing as well. Scary stuff w/your heart. Take it easy.

George said...

Congrats and welcome to Maniacism! Wendy and I had fun waiting for all of you out there. It really wasn't as miserable as it looked and we didn't want to miss your first maniac star achievement.

mtnrunR said...

You and Eric did a great job. Way to go!
tom

Anne said...

That's it. I'm heading back to the Pilates studio. I am amazed, Michelle,...simply amazed.

#401 said...

Congrats #402
It was a blast and such a pleasure to run with you. I'd do it again anytime. Possibly on New year's eve day!
#401

Sarah Elaine said...

A PR, a FANTASTIC job listening to and working with your own body and best of all... sexy rain ponchos! Yeah, baby!!

Good job, Michelle! You continue to be my inspiration.

E-Speed said...

congrats on a great race! Take it easy and keep that heart happy!

Anonymous said...

Wow, awesome job. congrats on the PR and in that weather?!? You rock.

bapp said...

Nice job on your 3rd marathon. Just got caught up with your entries. They are great. Thanks for all your neat comments, concerns, worries, jokes, and...life experiences that you share on your blog. Will continue to follow you on your next running experience.

Jessica Deline said...

Brrr what a chilly but fun race! Did your doctor tell you to keep your HR under 160?

Anonymous said...

Congrats Michelle!
A true MANIAC! You go girl. =)

I'm so bummed I missed you guys at 8! We saw Eric, and somehow George and I missed Rob, so we were waiting and waiting, finally deciding we must have missed him, and I ran back to the car to get the cowbell so we wouldn't miss you guys, and when I got back, George said I just missed you! Such a bummer since I love being there for you guys! By the way, George is an awesome marathon support buddy, he knows all the best places to drive and park, etc. =)

Anyhow, it was a blast to see you looking so strong at 25.5, you guys certainly didn't look like the miles, the hills, or the weather had dampened your spirits.

I can't wait to see your medal and your maniac jersey!

Hugs,
Wendy

craig said...

Congratulations on achieving maniac status. This has been quite the year for running for you. You should be proud of your accomplishment. I am.

Joe said...

Michelle, you Maniac you!!

wow, what a report and what a performance in less-than-perfect coinditions. Great support for you along the way and way to just keep going!

Hope the heart stuff is under control. Do listen carefully to it!

Any blisters after all those squishy miles?

angie's pink fuzzy said...

wow, that's fantastic!!!! michelle, you are awesome!

bummer about the heart issues, glad you still finished (and with a PR, to boot!)

Good luck with your next one!

runliarun said...

Such a lighthearted report for what must have been a much more harrowing experience than you make it sound. This is true grace.

Anonymous said...

Great job and a PR!!! How awesome.

Ryan said...

Great job on another very successful marathon!

Anonymous said...

Congrats on a successful marathon, especially under those conditions. Boy was I glad I was laying in bed at 8 AM instead of shivering in that frigid rain! In fact I couldn't even bring myself to run on Sunday!

Anonymous said...

Nice job on the race!
Congrats on the PR.
And what an impressive schedule.

Annette said...

Great job! I guess squeezing all those marathons so close together was good for your time. :) I cannot believe your upcoming schedule. You are a mad marathoning woman. ;) Make sure you get some down time to recover and take care of that heart!

Anonymous said...

Michelle, that's awesome! A PR on your third marathon. Sounds like miserable weather, but it was nice that you had company the entire way. Congratulations!