Marathon Trainers

Race Reports (Read 688 times)


    Pam, congratulations on a great run! I love those pictures where you're totally airborne!

      Cascades 10K

      temp at start: 81 and sunny... this is a hilly course and I really wanted to break 50 minutes.

      Did a 2 mile warmup and stretched... felt ok, but legs felt a little heavy... probably too many squats this week.

      Started too far back and had to pass almost the whole time.

      L1- 7:41- too fast

      L2- 7:50- hill here

      L3- 8:11- another hill-   this course seems to go up hill but not downhill.... what goes up must come down, right?  not true here.  Smile  It's blazing hot too.  The firefighters sponsor this race and they blast the fire hoses on the course.  Didn't run through it myself, even though I felt rough... just didn't want the wet shoes.

      L4- 8:08

      L5- 7:55- at this point, I think I can go sub 50-  My watch says 39:05

      L6- 8:47- that last hill got me... I wanted to walk it so bad, but I didn't... I just slowed down

      last .3 (on my Garmin)- 2:50-  7:20 pace...  

      final time:51:30-    

      This race gets me every time... my friends and I decided that between the hills and the heat, this is one of the hardest 10Ks we know of.

      AHH!!!   I will get you sub 50!!   

      Off to the pool now.


        Good job, Kimmie. Hot and hilly, not a good combination for a sub-50! Find yourself a nice flat fall 10k and get a smokin' PR!
        Mr Inertia

        Suspect Zero

          Short version: 3:44:05
          AG: 53/127
          OA: 408/1375
          47+ min PR

          Full version:

          I knew going into this that I was going to get a huge PR. I also knew that I was going to break 4 hours unless disaster struck. I was a little bit sure that I would hit right around a 3:45. One of my primary goals for this race was even splits, to finish strong. I trained as hard as I could for this and my training went very well. I peaked at 67 miles which included a 20 mile long run and a 13 mile med/long run.

          Nothing special to report for the events leading up to the race.

          My plan was to use the first 2+ miles to ease into my race pace of 8:35. My first two miles were 9:10 and 8:41 just as planned. I didn't feel that it was as effortless as I had hoped - not difficult by any stretch, but not an effortless cruise that I had hoped for during the first few miles. I tell myself relaxation is key.

          Miles 3-6 are right on pace - 8:35 +/- just a few seconds. At this point I am settled in. strong and comfortable.

          I allow myself to pick up just a touch. My next several miles are in the low to mid 8:20s.

          At mile 15 it starts to get difficult. I was hoping that wouldn't happen until a bit later in the race (like mile 25 would have been fine). I keep telling myself the key is to relax and stay fluid. I keep my focus on staying relaxed as opposed to my pace. Relax, fun fluid and my pace will take care of itself.

          At mile 17 things transition fairly quickly from "difficult" to "hurting" and I start to worry a bit. In Pfitzinger's Advanced Marathoning he talks about spaces like this, where things just get difficult at this point in the race. He said that often times if you stay positive and relaxed, things will work themselves out and you'll feel better in a bit. I turn my mind ones again towards relaxing. I let the discomfort wash over me and through me. I stay relaxed, telling myself if I can just hang on to mile 20 I might be able to start taking some chances with my pace. For the first time during the race I wonder what my finishing time will be. Miles 17-20 continue to fall in the low 8:20s.

          When I start into mile 20, my legs are hurting fairly badly and they feel a bit tight. However I feel like I have enough fuel in my system and I'm not bordering on a cramp yet so I decide to take some chances. I dig deep and come up with an 8:16 and an 8:19 for miles 21 and 22.

          But that's just not sustainable. I want to walk so very badly. My legs are screaming to ease up. My pace slows - I surge a little when I can, focus on staying relaxed the rest of the time. I know my pace is going to start bleeding out. I put all of my efforts towards making sure that happens as little as possible.

          Mile 23: 8:38
          Mile 24: 8:50
          Mile 25: 8:50
          Mile 26: 8:53
          .2 (.29 via Garmin) - 2:20

          I love that Cold Stone sponsors this race. Yellow Cake Batter Ice Cream is my standard treat after a well run race anyway and having some free at the finish line is just more wonderful than I can say.

          Hail to The Victors!

            Bayshore race report:


            In Race reports.


            Or in my blog.  Hope y'all like it!

              I signed up for this race not long after I finished running my first 50 mile race. Had no idea what the terrain was going to be like and to be honest after I decided that I was going to train to BQ at a marathon I really didn’t think I was actually going to do this run. It wasn’t until a week or two before my marathon that I started talking about South Mountain and it wasn’t until  a week after my Marathon that the decision was made to do it. Didn’t start packing for it until the night before. Now this event was held in NJ. When I think of NJ I think of flat, city and beach. What I don’t think about it is technical trails like I’ve run down south of where I live.


              Training for an Trail Ultra is much different then training for a marathon, that much I know. So going into this I knew I was undertrained, however I figured with my tenacity I’d get through it. My training consisted of lots of hills and lots of miles. What it didn’t consist of was miles on technical trails, ankle strengthening, and  eating while running (I figured I did that last year so I would be ok)


              Race day I woke up at 3:15 AM with just enough time to get changed get stuff in car grab a bowl of dry rice chex to go and get my coffee before heading out for the hour and a half drive. I gave myself extra time just in case something went wrong. Thankfully I did have that extra time. Leave it to me to not pay attention to the directions and take an earlier exit just because I see the name of the town on it.  Needless to say  when I saw the sign welcoming me to Jersey City I knew I was off track. What was I to do? Call dh and wake him up at 5 something in the morning that’s what lol (though I’m sure he wasn’t laughing) Wasn’t long before I was back on track. Got to the race with a half hour before start. PERFECT! Grabbed everything I brought but one bag that was specifically for after the race and headed to the starting line where I found Carl with his wife and one of his sons. The plan was to run with Carl .   That didn’t last long. I chin planted at mile 2.5. Someone was watching out for me cause it should have been a lot worse than what it was. A little dirt injured pride and just a little pain to my chin. With all the rocks in the area I could have easily broke my jaw on one.  Now this race is 4 legs which make a 20.5 mile loop. So you end up at the start/finish every 10 miles. The first 5 mile loop was probably the most technical. Lots of rocks/roots/mud on the uphills and downhills made it hard to really break out and run. I had brought my MP3 player with me but it wasn’t long before I KNEW it wasn’t going to be coming out of my waist pouch (yes I wore a waist pouch and have never ran  with one   before  one of many mistakes) After the guys confirmed I was ok and I was back running it wasn’t long before I left them behind (SORRY Carl)  I ran close to girl named Jessie, a guy named Randy and a couple other guys to Turtle Back (first aid stop and also where Chris was going to be at later in the day) Instead of getting my bag of stuff that was there I had a couple pretzels and some pepsi. Filled up my water bottle  and off I ran. Again I was running with the same peeps for awhile however the sight of a beautiful waterfall stopped me in my tracks. I just had to get a picture. Unfortunately all I had was my old cell phone that had a camera in it. It doesn’t take great pictures but it also was expendable if necessary.


              I eventually caught back up to I think Randy and the two other guys that I had been running with earlier.  Played leap frog with them for a bit. Finally got to start/finish line. I was surprised where I was. Guess I didn’t study the 4 maps and 6 pages of directions.  That is when I figured out I would be at that stop every 10 miles.  Was there long enough to say hi to Glenn. Tell him of my adventure so far and  to grab my potato’s out of my drop bag, had a couple, fill my water bottle and use the porta pot and back on the trail I was. This time I was running behind two other gentlemen. I recognized one but not sure who he was. I figured that as long as I stuck close to them that I wouldn’t’ have to worry about getting lost. Well around mile 13 they turned around  stopped told me we were going the right way but they had hit their mile quota and were going down to the road to finish running.  From that point on I was on my own. The course was well marked and I found myself at the third stop. I gave one of the guys my bottle to refill. Had some soda and made yet another mistake. Instead of grabbing my drop bag and getting something out of it that I’ve used before I had part of a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Chatted with the volunteers. Talked about trail running vs road racing. They asked how well I thought the course was marked. They then told me I’d be running in some clear fields and to keep an eye out for the ribbons.  The way the ribbons worked was Pink to the first station orange back to the start/finish pink again then orange again. I told them thanks for the info and thanks for volunteering and off I went.  Wasn’t long before I realized that I left my water bottle there. CRAP! What was I to do??? Keep running.  About 15 minutes later nausea set in a bit of cramping. My stomach was NOT happy about the peanut butter sandwhich.


               OH well live and learn. Now the course was filled with uphills and downhills but what really sucked is that A LOT of the downhills were filled with lose rocks and lots of roots. When you’re not familiar with running in that terrain it can be quite intimidating. I didn’t much run the downhills as dance down them.  I fell again close to 20 miles in. This time I knew I was falling and caught myself with my hands. Ended up tweaking my left wrist and banging up my right elbow. Again I brushed the dirt I could off me and trudged on. Wasn’t long before I was back at the start/finish area. I told Glen that I had fallen a second time, that I was ok and that it was a tough course. I went to grab one of the 4 oz bottles that goes with my fuel belt since I no longer had my hand held bottle. First one I grabbed was empty. Not sure how that happened but oh well. Now I WOULD have wore my fuel belt but I had this damn waist pack that I was carrying and as it was I was too busy dealing with that to worry about another thing on my waist. That and I didn’t need any more chaffing then what was going on. I chatted with some peeps for a few then off I went.


              Now when I left to start my first leg of my second loop I was 3rd female and I believe 19th  in (at least that’s what I was at the 3rd stop and no one passed me.  I had planned on calling Ken from the finish of the first loop but had forgotten. I took it upon myself to call him while walking up a rocky hill (not like I was going to go much faster running) while doing that two girls had caught up to me. From the sounds of it they were very familiar with technical trails and had at least done a few 50 milers.  At this point in the run I had come to terms that I had bitten off more than I could chew. I was sooooooo not ready for this terrain. Second time the South Mountain name would teach me a lesson (first was another South Mountain in PA that I did my first 10 miler in. I did it cause in the race description it said only one hill. If I had known what I was getting myself into I probably woulnd’t have done it) Anyway I let them pass me and I didn’t even bother trying to stick with them. Probably another big mistake. I was already feeling the affects of dehydration. It was an awfully warm day and 4 oz of water between each stop was NOT enough. Course drinking pepsi at the stops didn’t help with that. Not sure which mile it was I found myself off course. I finally ran into a gentlemen. I of coursed asked him if he was coming back from Turtle back. His reply was no it’s the other way and that I needed to cross the bridge and go up the big hill. That it was quite a trek. I then proceeded to tell him that I was doing a 100k and that I had already done that part of the trail before but was with others and hadn’t quite paid attention to which way we were going cause I was too worried about not tripping over roots twisting my ankle on the rocks. Anyway I turned back and finally got back on course and found my way to Turtleback.  Filled my water bottle, this time I drank water and soda at the stop and had pretzels. I never did touch any of my drop bags other than the one at the start/finish stop. One of the guys reminded me I better get going before I stiffened up. I thanked them and off I went. Off on my own my ankles were really starting to feel the effects of all the turning they had done due to mis step on rocks and roots. I was really starting to question if I’d be able to finish the race in one piece. I felt I would finish but that it would cost me a lot. I contemplated that while trekking through the miles. Again I ended up off course. At one point I was going the wrong direction (didn’t know that at that point) I finally stopped to try and figure things out. Not long two woman that I hadn’t seen on the course before asked me if I was looking for something. lI then proceeded to ask if they were going to turtleback and that I was coming back from it.Turns out they were too. They had left around 15 minutes or so after I had (found that out at the finishline) anyway we leaped frogged for a bit. At one point I called Ken told him that I was thinking of pulling out at the halfway mark. Between the  2 falls before the finishing the first loop)  my ankles feeling the effects of dehydration and lack of calories I just couldn’t see that I would do any better the second half when I start feeling the effects of exhaustion etc. He agreed with me. After that call I got ahead of the two women for the last mile or so and got in finish at 1:18 pm.  I saw Glen told him I was DONE. He asked me if I had fell again I said no but that the race was a lot more technical then I expected and my ankles though not injured were getting weaker and that if I kept going I WOULD be injured. I wasn’t willing to take that chance. Running is more important to me then finishing a 100k I signed up for on a whim. He asked me if his description wasn’t good enough.  I’m like this is NJ I never thought there would be trails like THIS! I think the only way I would have believed it is if someone I knew very well told me. Anyway I hung out with Rick (flourcity) his family  at the finishline watching people come in some done some going on. Carl finally came in. Unfortunately he had come in late so he wouldn’t be able to finish before the 10:00 PM closing time. And I have to say this is one course I WOULDN”T think about doing in the dark no matter how good my head lamp is.



              It was a great ultra! The volunteers were AWESOME! It was very well supported for being a Fatass! South Mountain is a great run for trail runners! Unfortunately I’m a road runner (at the moment).  I don’t consider this a fail though I would have if I continued and got injured. I knew that I was reaching before I started it.  I’m proud of myself for being able to finish over a 50k on terrain that I’m not familiar with (at least since 2006 when I vowed off those types of trails after injuring an ankle at the end of a 30k trail race). I’ll do it again but not for awhile. I’ll stick to trails that aren’t too technical or roads. OH and I hurt MORE than I ever have! I finally have that “marathon” walk


              BTW THANKS if you’ve read this novel . Crap thanks if you made it half way. I’ll add pictures a little later!

              Your toughness is made up of equal parts persistence and experience. You don't so much outrun your opponents as outlast and outsmart them, and the toughest opponent of all is the one inside your head." - Joe Henderson

                Rockenmama’s first  last minute marathon (North Olympic Discovery) report.


                This was a first filled with many firsts.  I had ran a technical (over) 50k trail the previous weekend so my expectations for the marathon were pretty low. So getting up at 3:15 to drive 2.5 hours was something I was willing to do but not something I would be willing to do on a goal race. The race didn’t start until 9 am however I hadn’t  picked up my bib etc so I needed to do that between 7-8. Leave it to me to get there before the first bus left. Worked out well cause the first person I talked to turned out to be Rose’s Revenge. I eventually would see most of the walkers I met on the bus along the course however the lady I sat next too I never did see again.


                Anyhoo it only took like 2 seconds to get my bib (go figure) so I had close to 2 hours to waste before race start. Gave me a chance to take some pictures of the starting area.  Wasn’t long before the small room started filling up and LOTS of Maniacs showed up, a few who were doing their second marathon for the weekend. Both Steven Yee and Tony Phillipi were there which was nice. Steven is such a sweetheart. OH and a photo lover. He made sure to get lots of pictures for the upcoming news letter. It was nice meeting all the maniacs I met (can’t remember most of the names). It was nice going into a race with no butterflies.


                I lined up between the 9 and 10 minute milers.  Thursday night I was thinking it would be nice to go sub 4 however after getting hardly no sleep after arriving to Washington I was just hoping to have the energy to finish.  At 9 am we were off.  Now for some reason don’t ask me why , but I thought it would be a pretty straight forward course. NOT! It had us meandering all over which is NOT my favorite type of course however it was a beautiful course. The course was uphill, downhill, flat, by highway, in park, by ocean, asphalt, gravel, over a trestle bridge in a beautiful forest, and cement sidewalks. Seemed like a little bit of everything. The volunteers were AMAZING!! Probably my second most favorite aspect of the race. There weren’t tons but those that were out there put everything into what they were doing. Dressing up in costume. Bringing tape players to blare motivational music.  Lots of motivational signs along the way as well as written on the course.  At mile 13 they had people dressed up as “wild cats” and a little blow up cover thing so I high fived one of them before going through. Anyhoo the hilly section came in after mile 16 and my favorite stop was right at 16. The theme was “Be our Guest” from Beauty and the Beast. They had tables set up like a fine dining restaurant (not that I sat down lol) and they were all dressed up as well. After going through that aid stop there was a sign saying dessert coming up. My first thought was oh hills are coming (not sure that’s what they meant ) and sure enough I was right. At this point of the race there were several people I played leap frog with, that is until mile 24 I believe and then after passing all of them  back I wasn’t passed again but maybe by one other person. Now at this point I really didn’t have any complaints about the race. So it meandered a lot and I’m not all into that. The scenery made up for that but when I got to mile 24 or so and  I had to start running on packed dirt that had rocks sticking out for almost the rest of the race OMG my feet were NOT happy! Instead of being able to put the gas I ended up stopping several times. I didn’t have the mental energy to deal with that crap. Whoever thought that   terrain made  for a fast finish must have REAL toughened feet (and I thought mine were tough lol) If it had been paved or just dirt it would have been PERFECT. Oh well such is life. I’m sure if I hadn’t been exhausted in the first place I might not have been so peeved about it.


                All in all a GREAT race! Finished in 4:08:XX which I have no complaints about.  I wore new shorts and new sports bra (something I never do) I also tried a new gel , course I only had one gel throughout the marath on. Oh and before I forget I swear they had a volunteer for each finisher. As soon as I got through the finish line a lady grabbed my arm. Escorted me to where they take the timing chip bands of your ankle. I’m sure most people felt like royalty, however leave it to me to feel like an invalid though I really appreciated the gesture. I guess when she kept holding my arm after the chip was taken off and was going to escort me to go get my bag etc that was enough for me.  This is one race I really wish I had brought my camera with, however I had left it in the car.  OH after getting my bag,  a cup of soup and a popsicle I found my car and started my 3 hour journey back to Seattle for a fun filled day with the twins.

                Your toughness is made up of equal parts persistence and experience. You don't so much outrun your opponents as outlast and outsmart them, and the toughest opponent of all is the one inside your head." - Joe Henderson


                  Fun report! And I love the pictures you posted in the weekly. My friend Dove ran that as part of her double, I believe. She's really nuts.

                    Thanks Erika!


                     I actually sat and talked to Marylou for a few before the race start. I think "nuts" is a requirement to be a maniac lol. I may not do all the races like most maniacs but I know I'm nuts

                    Your toughness is made up of equal parts persistence and experience. You don't so much outrun your opponents as outlast and outsmart them, and the toughest opponent of all is the one inside your head." - Joe Henderson

                    Oh Mighty Wing

                      Grizzly Marathon - Choteau, MT


                      The course was changed the day before the start. It went from a USATF certified course to one that wasn't. It was measured by car... the distance ended up being 27.4 miles...


                      ok so it starts off on road goes for 1.5 miles and dumps you onto a dirt road covered by stones - I'd say gravel but really it was nice this nice pebbly stuff... it was bruise the bottom of your foot gravel. This is when I went from racing to a fun run. I was ready to race after my issues at Around the Lake, but I knew this wouldn't be the conditions for it.



                      OK so you are running over rolling hills through open range. It was gorgeous. There were mountains in the distance and earth for as fast as the eye could see. The rolling hills were pretty steep but in reality weren't so bad... I think they seemed worse because of the gravel. At no point could I find a ryhthm because my feet would start to slip. So water stops were about 2-2.5 miles apart it seemed. The course is out and back. On the way out you ran with a head wind. On the way back you had no wind at all and the temperature quickly made itself know. There was no shade or clouds. Boy it was a pretty day!! I wore a watch this time and it was nice. I knew my splits and even though I didn't race this course I think for a first ride with a watch that was the way to go. All was going along swimmingly but one of the roughest spots was mile 20-24 where there was a disappearing water stop... it was there on the way out but not on the way back... that was really really rough. Around then I looked at my time and realized if I husteled I could get in under 4:50. So I kept my eye on the watch and when I hit the pavement I moved my legs the best I could. I came in at 4:49: xx. All in all it was a good day and a new state!


                      After that I headed to glacier national park and it was amazing!!!



                      I was soaking my legs in the lake.  And captured myself one heck of a self photo!!(if I do say so myself! haha) All in all it was a perfect weekend!


                        What a great self portrait! Love the setting. Whenever I try to do that I just get the top of my head or something. Why did they change the course? That gravel can be really hard on your feet. Given my foot problems, I probably would've bailed. Congrats on knocking out another one!

                        (did you cut your hair??)

                        Oh Mighty Wing

                          thanks! I was surprised it came out so well!! haha


                          I have no clue why she changed the course. She said it was because of safety but in a town that small it's hard to believe that. Plus it had been that way for a while. but she's a new RD so maybe she wanted to make it "her" course or something.


                          my feet were soo sore afterwards! haha but they seemed to recover well.


                          and yes I did get my hair cut thank you for noticing!!! Big grin


                            Here's the link to my Equinox Ultra Marathon 50k race... I came in 6th in the wimmin's category (no age groups) out of 23 female finishers.


                              AWESOME report!!! Looking good Erika!! You are SOOOOOOOOO gonna rock Victoria!!

                              Your toughness is made up of equal parts persistence and experience. You don't so much outrun your opponents as outlast and outsmart them, and the toughest opponent of all is the one inside your head." - Joe Henderson