Well, not exactly. But my soul got screwed at the Lucky Trails. More on that later. First, the Marathon. I ran marathon number 2. My goal was to finish and to finish under 5 hours. Check my bib number out. 777 at the "Lucky Trails" marathon on St. Patrick's weekend. How luckier can a person get?
No P.R.'s today. Once again, I went belly up with 6 miles to go. I was on 4 hr 30 min pace through 18 miles. Then slowed a little, then a little more and by mile 23, mostly walked.
26.2 Miles: 5:17:30
Kayano miles: 255.5
Lessons learnt today. Do not try to run a marathon a day after returning from a vacation. Do not run a marathon a day after returning from a vacation, having driven all night.
Back to getting screwed. Somewhere on the first loop, I felt a sharp pain on my left foot. I figured I stepped on a sharp gravel or something. After a while, it happened again on the same spot. After several incidents of this, I started to wonder why it only happened on my left foot. Maybe my gait was such that stepping on a gravel just so gives me the pain? Anyway, I ran the first 3 loops carefully, making sure I wasn't stepping on any big gravel. At the beginning of the 4th loop, I took my shoe off to see if anything was stuck on my shoe. Well, there was a small screw that was stuck there. It was not long enough to bother me on a flat surface but when a gravel hit the head of the screw. it would push it's way up enough to send a sharp pain. It made a small hole in my sock but did not penetrate the skin. It probably took me a few minutes to take that screw out but afterwards, I was able to run very much relaxed. Too bad I was out of gas by then.
Trail running is not easy. There were short sections of asphalt and concrete and every time I was on the hard stuff, I was glad for it's smoothness. On the other hand, I am not as sore as I was after Houston Marathon. I did the "walking down the stairs test" and passed.
Loop marathons: One advantage of a looping course is that you get to see your friends 3 or 4 times during the run. With my lucky number and my Strider's singlet, I also had a bunch of runners and supporters shouting encouragements. They were:
"Hey, lucky 7!"
"777 is a BIG plane..."
"Go triple 7, go!"
One disadvantage of looping is well, looping. It does get a little mind numbing after awhile. But hey, the volunteers were the best and with my cool number, they all recognized me by the 3rd loop. My favorite water station was the girl scout station. They were really energetic and enthusiastic through out the run. Overall, all the stations were very well stocked with water, Gatorade, variety of fruits, cookies and pretzels. My hats off to the organizers of this marathon. You guys ROCK!
Met another stranger that reads my blog. Mr. Stranger Runner, thank you for reading my blog and thank you for recognizing me on the trail.
Running in Houston is so cool now. It seems that every race I go to, I meet someone I know. That is cool. This time, I met Steve Bezner, Jamoosh with his St. Arnold shirt and his wife, Sarah on the trail, Keith "Rock On" Kellerher, Mr. Boone, Karen and Tim Bowler and many Striders who's names I don't know yet.
Next Goal. To set an ice cream eating P.R. at the Blue Bell Fun Run. How does one negative split on eating free ice cream? Any training tips on that?