|Marathon Numero Three-o
||[Dec. 5th, 2011|04:34 pm]
Popular series of fiction, fancy, and fact.
Executive summary: Drove up to Sacramento, ran the California International Marathon, drove back. |
I missed my running peeps duckierose and aprilbegins but still had a reasonably good time. I got to the starting line around 5:30, and was one of the first people there. It was COLD, despite the awesome long-sleeved running shirt that the marathon provided. I discovered a nearby Store 24 that was heated, and spent an hour huddling there for warmth. The proprietor even let me have a cup of hot water for free, even though I offered to buy it as "tea".
The route started at Folsom Dam, or rather, on a road next to a sign that said "Folsom Dam". There wasn't actually any mile-high wall or billowing waterfalls in view. The route was suburban, passing through residential areas, cute "old town" type stretches, and strip malls. We ended up at the capitol. I kind of wish Arnold were still in power, for surely he would have appeared at a high window in dramatic silhouette, giving a thumbs-up to the legions of fitness enthusiasts below.
The race was well-organized. Mile markers at every mile, and plentiful water stations whose frequency increased at the very end.
There were the usual cheerers-on along the way, of course thinning out as the day wore on. My favorite: a guy early on holding a sign that said "You are not almost there. Keep running." Honorable mention goes to the World's Worst Brass Band, who sounded like three high school brass bands all playing different songs. Least favorite enthusiast: around mile 20, bull-necked woman with a cowbell shouting "FOCUS!"
The results aren't in yet, but I probably finished close to my Vegas Marathon time. This was a harder run; though billed as "downhill", which it technically was in terms of total elevation change, the experience was more of a series of rolling ups and downs, which were mild but felt increasingly weighty towards the end. If you ascend 100 feet it's small consolation that you get to descend 110 feet.
I somehow listened to, and followed, an 85bpm click the entire race without going crazy. Also listened to Adam Carolla and the Pretty Good Podcast. For a while I kept up with the pace runners (4'15, then later 5'25). Though I eventually dropped behind both, I might try to actually follow one to the finish next year. It seems like a fun and social way to reach a goal speed.
Though it was an incremental improvement, I felt less muscular pain than during the last two marathons. (During Vegas I remember reaching the 13mile point and wondering if I could actually go on, which was definitely not the case here.) I more often ran into fatigue issues, particularly in the 20s, where it felt like I was jogging against an invisible wall of rubber. My fault for not training more in the 20-mile range.
Special props to my iPod Touch, who ran the entire time and still had over half its battery left at the end.