Not as expected, very tough night out there. 74 degree start and a 64 degree finish. Winds 18-20mph and gusting a bit higher. (blah) 4:44:07. One of the most humbling experiences of my life.
Woke up this morning around 7am, couple cups of coffee, protein cliff bar, toast and strawberry Jam, water (I’ve been dehydrated the entire time I’ve been in Vegas but spent the last two days getting it under control). 11 am, Cliff bar, Gatorade and another glass of water. Start with some very light stretching, really slowly working on the hips and IT bands. Ankles KT Taped up, all ready to go
1:30 pm – Show up at race, find a spot in the shade and blocked from the wind (pretty bad out there today) and chill. Some light stretching, feeling nice and loose
2:45 pm – Porta potty then head to corral and take a cliff shot gel, bit of water.
3:08 or so, my corral is off. Lots of energy, fun start.
Mile 1 – 10:06 – I go off very conservative but notice my HR is way up, 20 bpm more than it usually is at that pace. Small uphill and into a nasty head wind. As soon as we turn north I’m sure it will settle down.
Miles 2 – 6 (10:05, 10:00, 10:13, 9:49, 9:47) – Taking it easy but HR is still way up, with the tailwind and a slight downhill. I’m feeling light on the feet but something just doesn’t feel right
Miles 7 – 10 (9:28, 9:32, 9:27, 9:12) – Okay, pick up the 4:10 pace group and feel like I get into a rythym. HR still way up though.
Miles 11 – 13 (10:15, 10:06, 10:13) - Why did the pacer pick up the pace so much? Is she crazy? Wait, its me. We change direction and have a semi broadside/head wind now and a few uphills. Uh oh….. I’m slipping.
Mile 14 – (10:27) Hill was much longer than anticipated, HR shows how much I gave it getting up, passing a lot of walkers but am paying the price, Give a hoot when I get to the top. Downhill I’ll recover. Wait, HR isn’t going down at all going downhill? I’m above what my max would me in a half. Saw Docket on her way up when I was going down but she had her head down, looked like she was giving it everything she had. Cheered her on but I think she missed me.
Miles 15 – 17 (10:54, 11:22, 10:48) This was the toughest 2 2 miles of my life. It was a long, head wind, never ending 2 miles up. Lots of walkers. I still managed to “jog” up it but again paying the price. Way over my HM heart rates. Get to the top, think, hardest part done, get into a grove and bring this thing home.
Mile 18 (10:28) – Recover a bit on the down hill, feeling better. Cheer on Docket again as she has her head down, probably trying to stay out of the wind but missed me again
Mile 19 -20 (11:10, 11:44) – Course levels out, HR creeping way up again and I’m at very easy pace now. Take a few extra seconds in the water stop.
Mile 21 (12:29) – Had to walk about 30 seconds to get HR down. This time it works and I pick up the 4:25 pace group. Phew, not all is wasted, I can still beet Ophra
Mile 22 – 23 (10:32, 10:51) – Suck it up time. I stop looking at my watch and just follow the pacer. Feeling pretty comfortable now.
Mile 24 (13:13) – Wait, why did she just pick up the pace? Look at my watch and we are running a 9:20? Turns out she was about 10 minutes behind so she started to try to make up time. This hurt me, pegged my HR, 188 is way to high and I had to walk twice about 60 seconds each to settle down again.
Mile 25 (13:19) – Again walked for about 2 minutes. I think this one was more physiological than anything. We were in the ugly lonely dark part of town. Notice my HR is the lowest this mile since mile 5. Okay suck it up, lets go. We make the turn to the strip.
Mile 26 and 26.xxx What ever the distance was. Okay, in training you banged out that sub 7 minute mile at the end of a HM, suck it up!!! I give it everything, get into 5k HR’s and man I’m flying. See me hit 9:33, but ouch, 192 bpm, that’s higher than its ever been. Smile for the cameras and I had nothing left.
Finish – I get to the shute and almost threw-up right there, legs were jello and my chest was pounding, hard to breathe. Actually really scared for a second. Got a water, chocolate milk, but the saving grace was the jamba juice, banana strawberry really hit the spot. Milar blanket and walked through and found a place to sit down. I couldn’t stand, knees were shaking and calves just wouldn’t hold anymore. About 10 minutes sitting and HR is still 168, wow. Finally settled about 30 minutes later, visited with some friends and strangers. Was able to get up and walk the 1 ½ miles back to my car no problem.
During the race I took 5 cliff shot gels, one at the start and 4 spaced 45 minutes apart. I had an extra but no way I could stomach it. Water with the cliff shots and Gatorade on the other stops. Sometimes two cups.
I thought the race was well organized for the full. Could have used a couple of more Gatorade stops, they were out of my sequence, and maybe one or two more spaced out at the end. But all in all zero complaints about the race. I will however NEVER run the half. That’s a lot of people.
I am extremely happy with my results not by the numbers, but I know I gave it everything I had. I’m disappointed with my numbers for sure but something just wasn’t right at the start. Even sitting trying to relax before the race my HR was over 110 a few times. My resting HR is 47. The things I worried the most about, my ankles and ITB, were both non-issues. If I stayed on the 10:00 pace I think I had a 50% chance of a 4:20
The only thing I did different today was take a decongestant this morning, the wind has really screwed up my allergies and my Flonase wasn’t enough.
Play the Game Hard!
Josh, Great effort under tough circumstances. You really emptied the tank ... yes, that was barfing pun. What do you think was up with the HR being high? Had you done some runs at that time of day? Its not uncommon for your HR to be slightly higher in the afternoon than the morning, but it doesn't sound like that was the issue. Higher HR could mean you were fighting an illness. Anyway, nice job. Hope it inspires you to keep on pushing. And Josh (and everyone else), be careful with pushing your HR up too high at the end of a grueling run. It can be very dangerous.
Sounds like it just wasn't your day from the beginning - heartrate up and all. I'm glad, in a way, that i don't have a HRM because I"d be scared to psych myself out based on the numbers alone. It sounds like the conditions were less than ideal. I can't help but wonder if you did, on some level, psych yourself out despite the conditions - a PM race gives you a lot of time to think that you might not have in training, and that you wouldn't have on a race that basically starts while you're still bleary eyed and unfocused.
13.1: 1:45 | 26.2: 3:55
Bago - I seriously think it has something to do with my allergies. Yesterday morning I was so stuffed up I couldn't take my flonase, so I took that decongestant. Now I doubt it was the decongestant but signs I wasn't feeling right? Perhaps. I've run almost all runs this cycle between 1-3 pm just for this reason.
Sprinkles - Yeah could have been some jitters but I thought I would have settled a bit as it went on. In my head I was surprisingly relaxed and pretty confident. If I didn't have the HR and gone strictly by pace, I would have been in serious trouble. I didn't however, have my HR on my screen, I set it to beep at me when it got over my max.
I've been reading through all of my training from the last year and this wasn't even close. The first half I ever ran was a year ago today and I had better HR's and paces during that entire race than I did on the first 13 last night, wasn't even close. That was 50 pounds ago and with only running 100 miles in my entire life. Even the heat shouldn't have been that much of a factor at the paces I was running.
Its all good. Like I said, bring on the next one. Knee a bit sore and shin a bit tender but I'm feeling surprisingly good today. Driving back to Canada tomorrow so a few days off then see how I feel this weekend and get running again. Next cycle begins Jan 21st!!!
Sounds like a tough race in tough conditions. Nice job gritting it out and getting it done.
Congrats on finishing in the conditions. I was tracking a few people and was wondering why they were moving so slow when they usually are super speedy. Vegas weather in December sounds terrible.
Great job Josh. I wouldn't be surprised if your allergies were affecting your heartrate, especially given how congested you were the day before. That weather sounds horrible! Wind is the worst. Your training has been really good this cycle, another cycle and a nice cool, calm marathon and you will crush that time.
PRs: 47:54 (10K); 1:46:36 (HM); 3:50:52 (FM)
Recovering from injured knee (PCL/Lateral Meniscus)
Congrats,....its a win. The perseverance is good mental ammo for the next race which will prove more than helpful hopefully.
PR's : HM 1:51:15 - 5K 21:27
Heat and wind are definitely not ideal for racing a marathon. I, for one, will never run Vegas.
I have some thoughts when it a postmortem is appropriate. But for now, enjoy your achievement!
PRs: 21:35 (5K); 1:46:46 (HM); 4:30:46 (FM)
Great jobbers on a really tough day! I heard it was nasty out there!
3/17 Shamrock Marathon
4/20 North Coast 24 Hour
7/27 Burning RIver 100M
8/24 Baker 50M
10/5 Oil Creek (distance to be determined)
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Altra Zero Drop
Run Strider Run!
Nice job Josh! You finished a marathon! That in itself is awesome.
PR: 47:52 (10K), 1:48:17 (HM), 4:01:42 (FM)
Sorry you had a bad experience. I also had a horrible. Great job on the finish!
Damaris, Marathon Maniac, Ultra Runner
Next: San Francisco Marathon
"The most powerful weapon on earth is the human soul on fire."
Actually, the winds were at 30mph at some point in time.
Congrats on your first marathon! You should be very proud of that!
Less than ideal conditions for sure. I'll bet your allergies were the culprit for your high heartrate especially if you were feeling "off".
PRs: 1:39:24 (HM) 3:47:02 (FM)
I think that decongestants can increase your heart rate so that could have been part of it. But despite it all, you toughed it out and made it. Congrats, marathoner!
PRs: 5K-23:08 (10/12), 10K-48:15 (4/12), 13.1-1:49:33 (10/12), 26.2-4:09:21 (5/12)