Smaller By The Day
I'm in the middle. My fiance is on my left. That's a new friend on the right. He's also part of Ted Spiker's sub-30 club. That is if this picture link works :-) I don't always have the best of luck with that. Anyway, there's your pic.
Some of you already know my background. For those that don't, I'll shorten it up. Football - wreslting - powerlifting - fatty - runner. I did well in sports, but was always the BIG GUY. I'm talking 315 pounds guy. Then, I decided I wanted to run a marathon. I'm currently 230 pounds, and my previous race times have been 5K - 31:02, 5K - 26:58, HM - 2:03:54, 5K - 25:48. Do you like how I just slipped a half marathon in there?
Today my goal was to finish in under 25 minutes. I've never used electronics in a race, but I had considered doing so today. Then, I realized that my GPS stunk in the town the race was being held. I'm sure the weather didn't help. It was raining, and upper 30's. It may have just hit 40 at one point. It was also windy, and we had thick cloud cover. For a guy with a PR in every race so far, and having never used electronic devices I was a little bit relieved. It was one less thing to worry about.
I met up with the guy in the picture when I first got there. We'd been talking about this race for a while, and he was hoping to break that 30 minute barrier here. Four of us went for a 1.4 mile warmup run. Then, I ran my strides. I don't think anyone else was interested in that. I like them because they make me feel fast. Confidence thing you know.
Finally, we line up and we're all jibber-jabbering away. Before I know it, there's an air horn. It was just out of nowhere. So, we all turned around and ran. I couldn't get around some of the people in front of me, and made a HUGE lateral shift toward the lane that wasn't closed to traffic. It got me out in the open though, and I was off. Once I found a pace that felt "too fast", that's where I tried to settle in. I just kept telling myself that this uncomfortable pace was my new reality...deal with it. That actually helped.
I reached the first set of time keepers at 7:58, which was right in line with my goal.
The second mile was interesting. I had been warned that there was a steep hill. There were actually several steep hills. I can't tell you how many exactly. It's kinda blurry in my head. Anyway, I'm trying to maintain my form up these hills, and I'm struggling. So is everyone else. I saw a fairly fit runner put his hands on his hips and walk. Well, that's when I put my pride aside and ran the hill the way I would on a training run. I do this weird swimming like motion when I'm training on hills. You'd have to see it. I'm not going to try to justify it, but when I did it in the race it was like someone flipped a switch. My breathing settled as much as it can for a race, and I started passing people...lots of people. That was pretty fun. As it turns out the first mile was a very gradual decline, and the second mile was an abrupt curvy climb back to the original elevation.
Second mile time keepers said I was at 15:52. Wait...what? I was faster?
The final 1.1 mile was a bit strange. The race didn't end where it started. It was nearby, but instead of the north parking lot, it finished inside the field house. So, it was mostly flat until we got to the final turn, or about .1 mile. I had finally passed a guy that I had been going back and forth with the entire race. I was starting to do that thing where noise was coming out when I exhaled. I decided I didn't care. That turn was coming up, and it was downhill. I was going to head through that overhead door as fast as I could. My shirt came in handy. It felt good to hear people yelling, "Give Em Hell". Then, there it was...the clock...the mat...the end...wooooo
Final time: 24:45.8
AG 5 of 11
Overall 90 of 333
Gender 72 of 144
I feel like a wizard for pacing that the way I did. 7:58 first mile, and 7:59 average? Come on. That's wizard stuff. Later I found out that while I didn't win an AG award, this was a qualifying event for the inaugural championship race in October. Placing top 5 in your AG qualifies you, and all who participate get a championship series jacket and medal. Not too bad.
Weight 100 pounds lost
5K 31:02 Sept. 2012 / 23:36 Sept. 2013 (Same Course)
10K 48:59 April 2013
HM 2:03:56 Nov. 2012 / 1:46:50 March 2013
MARATHON 3:57:33 Nov. 2013
Congrats on the sub-25! And did I understand correctly that you qualified for the championship? awesome!
Damaris, Marathon Maniac, Ultra Runner
"The most powerful weapon on earth is the human soul on fire."
Way to go dude. You are getting fast. I bet some of those skinny folks were wondering where that 230lb flash came from
”Failing to prepare is preparing to fail.”
“Whether you think you can, or you think you can't--you're right.”
Docket - It's my understanding that I qualified. I know it's like the week before my first marathon, but I don't think a 5K that weekend would kill me.
T-rod - Yeah, I had my eye on several of the skinny runners toward the end. It was a personal victory every time I passed one. I can't catch them all, but I can catch a few.
I had my eye on several of the skinny runners toward the end. It was a personal victory every time I passed one. I can't catch them all, but I can catch a few.
That is funny! Congrats!
Wizard stuff indeed! Fantastic job holding pace and congrats on the shiny new PR!
Bless your heart.
PRs: Marathon (2:49xx; '13) Half (1:25xx; '12) 10k (40:26; '11) 5mi (29:23; '13) 5k (17:33; '13)
Congrats, I just knew you were going to break that sub 25.
So_Im_A_Runner - Thanks! I'll be honest. I hadn't even thought of it that way. Maybe that's the mentality you develop after years of being the big guy, but it never occurred to me that I might actually be "fit" now and not just a guy out there trying to get fit.
LRB - I'm going to have to run into you at a race someday. Your races are never too far from where I am. For whatever reason, I chose to sign up for my first HM and Marathon 3 1/2 south in Indy. Grand Rapids and Detroit are both closer. Weird.
ImaRunnah2 - Thanks! I was hoping when I said that today at the race that it might inspire a nickname. Instead, they nicknamed me, "Rolling Pumpkin", because of my bright orange shirt and ability to pick up speed on hills.
Some day I might even be able to keep up with you.
What an incredible race! You nailed your goal and then some!!! Congratulations, also, on the weight loss: 85 pounds - incredible! You've come so far. I didn't know your back story before, so it was nice to learn a little more about you as well! Great job on the big ole PR!
Congrats Awood. Looks and sounds like you had a good time.
Race Report and your PR progress is very cool!
“Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.” - T.S. Eliot
Congrats to the Cutest Couple !!!
Next: IMT Des Moines HM, 10/19/2014 2:17:46
Salt Lake City HM, 04/18/2015
Wisconsin HM, 05/02/2015
Haha...we're still leading in that contest by the way. We just have to hold them off until Thursday, and we haven't hit anybody up for votes since last Wednesday or Thursday. I think we're going to start another push tomorrow, and try to get them to throw in the towel...lol