Monday, January 28, 2013

Carlsbad Marathon 2013

A little over two months ago I ran my first marathon. I am hooked!  Half marathons are still amazing but I love trying to push my body to the edge. Well...my body fell off the edge into a volcano wearing running shoes!
While training for this marathon I suffered gastroenteritis, a chest cold while in Vegas, & one day prior to this marathon strep throat.
*shrug* what's a girl to do?  You get you f#$%ing ass out there and run the marathon!


I spent the night at my friend Ann's house who lives closer Carlsbad. She was going to run with me, but she settled for the half marathon instead.  During carbohydrate loading all week, I felt fine. My "grandma" came to visit at the beginning of the week. Some women call "grandma" their "aunt flo". Other than that, training was tapered runs, until it started raining. Of course it starts to rain. Why wouldn't it considering everything else?! 
Friday afternoon I started to get a scratchy throat. By Saturday, Expo day, my throat was like hot lava!
I begin pumping myself with Zicam, Cold Ezze, & Airborne. My hubby would say, "it's all in your mind", but hot lava is hard to ignore! 
The Carlsbad Marathon & Half Marathon Expo, was under a big tent and the same as last year. The floor was sopping wet and as I walked through the tent, my jeans began to absorb the water on the turf.  I purchased the a couple of Carlsbad Marathon shirts, a waist belt to carry my phone, and some Stinger Gels. My friend and I talked about doing the Run Catalina Island in September 2013: http://runcatalina.com/index.php/catalina-island-conservancy-half-marathon
After getting our bibs, we left for more carb loading at the Old Spaghetti Factory and stopped off at the grocery store for sore throat medication. The medication helped me sleep for a little while. I woke up at 1:00am and took some more.
At 4:30am, my phone alarm sounded and I got up to dress. I can hear the rain and hoped it would stop.  After coffee and PB&J, we headed to the Westfield Mall for the start line. The year before I parked by the porta potties and was stuck in traffic for 1.5 hours after the race, trying to get out of the parking lot. This year we parked at the far end near the entrance into the mall. It took us only 15 minutes to get out after the race.  The rain didn't let up but was lighter then earlier. My friend Ann, brought blankets to cover us because she was going back to her car to wait for the half marathon start.

Ann did awesome & ran the half in 2:13 with a pace 10:11!!!
The marathon race was on time, but unlike last year, it was really subdue and the announcers sounded like a commercial. There was no upbeat music blasting, maybe because it was 6:15am!  My hubby calls this smile the mac cheeeeezzzeee smile!
 
video
My feeble attempt at stretching!
 
6:15am the race starts! Yippee. It's cold and lots of drizzle.  The road is easy to see because there is a little light.  Besides, I'm use to running in the dark. There are tons of water stations throughout this marathon. Some of the water stations had costume themes. So cool getting water from a pirate!
  Reading the blogs about last years marathoners getting lost and only completing 23 miles,  made me cautious and alert to all signs.  I didn't have to worry.  The organizers fixed these problems.  Unless you were blind, there was no excuses about which way to go on the marathon route.
 Miles 1 through 5 are a breeze before you turn to go up Palomar Airport Road.   This wasn't as bad as I had read about, but it IS boooooring for 6 miles. There are groups of spectators that came out to cheer runners on. Thank you, thank you thank you! Love the sign that said, "you trained longer than Kim Kardashian was married"!

 My pace was 11:00. There were two bands on this road, coming and going, and OH a giant shoe. Tada!
The weather was cold and wet. The cones kept the runners on the right path with another turn at mile 13 and 15.  At mile 14 the ear bud suctioned into my wet ear and got stuck as I tried to readjust them.   Hahaha I had to coax it out and refit it back onto the ear piece!  I think I feel asleep during the last mile.  My pace was 10:51.
This is about mile 4 and would have been in the dark if I had taken the pic My friend sent it to me. Sorry I was too sick to take video :(
 
At mile 15, the course joins the half marathoner on Hwy 101 along with the half marathoners.  I ran the Carlsbad half marathon last year and knew what to expect. It's crowded and it's difficult to keep a good pace because you're having to slow down, then manuver around other runners. I  NEVER say anything negative to other runners in ANY race. Besides, this race is too big to have any type of runner's etiquette  and I don't want anyone to have a bad experience in a race. I take these hiccups in stride and adapt
The best part about the marathon is the Pacific Ocean is on the right!  Unfortunately, the sun never broke through the clouds.

Beginning about 1/4 mile from mile 16, there are sign with arrows pointing "half marathon <----  & full marathon ---->".  The signs are everywhere leading up to mile 16. There was no way anyone could miss them.
 
Mile 16, 17, 18 passes by camp grounds and there's little to no view. My body is shivering. My pace here is 11:12. At the turnaround, my cold medicine had worn off and I was feeling horrible. During miles 19 and 20, I walked off and on. I lost site of the 4:45 pacer group, I had been keeping up with. Unable to keep warm, my curly hair was out of control, and I must have looked a hot mess because around mile 21, the medic on the bicycle came up to me asking if I was okay. I told him, "yes, thank you. I'm going to finish".  Here's were I get a little teary eyed. 
 I consider myself pretty tough for a non runner.  At mile 22,  my body was fighting me hard, and I begin talking to myself to my family members, such as "hello, hubby...I am struggling and need you to help me out here." This kept my mind occupied and I saved my talk with my hubby and God until the last mile.  My pace was 11:45 through miles 24 up to finish. I had empty my tank. There was no sprint to the end. Just me putting my hands up over my head as I crossed the finish line.
Finishers!
 

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