Sunday, June 15, 2008

Copenhagen Marathon May 18th, 2008

Goal: Another under 5 hour marathon.

To sum it up: not the marathon I wanted. It had to be a combination of things that some were out of my control but still it was a disappointment

I left MSP on Thrusday and arrived in CPH on Friday afternoon and the marathon was on Sunday. I hydrated on the flight and had lots of bagels and bananas. I think I correctly fueled during the week but once in Denmark the fueling / food was different. Friday after arriving we also headed to the Expo. It was rather small but I got a few good tech shirts. I also tried to chat up the 5 hour pacer but she didn't speak English. That worried me. I rested Friday evening but couldn't sleep well during the night. On Saturday DH was visiting with friends. They decided to walk around and I reminded them I was running a marathon the next day and needed to rest my legs. No luck. We ended up walking around for 2 hours. Mistake of one of many. Saturday evening couldn't find a decent place to have my normal pasta dinner. I finally got to see my son in the first time in 2 weeks. I sure missed him. Again didn't sleep well at night. The bathrooms where shared for a whole floor in the hotel, which was odd and ruined my normal bathroom rountine.

Race day: I brought my normal oatmeal packets and some peanut butter to put on the bread. It just didn't fill me up like when I'm at home. Trying to get all family members ready and a 3 year old to the start line was more hassle. I still haden't had my normal action and that was worrysome. So I left without them and hooked up with an English runner walking to the start. I was rushed to get my bag checked and get back to the start line. I didn't have a chance to pee again. Standing with the 5 hour pacer I was nervous but my legs felt dead and not fresh. Not a good sign. During the whole race I was about 3 strides behind the pacer and that didn't feel comfortable and they were running some fast miles and I knew that was going to hurt me in the end. By mile 6 I just couldn't keep pace with the pacer and let them go. They weren't too far ahead of me. By mile 10 I couldn't see them anymore. I knew my paces and I knew I was still on pace. I hit the half way mark in 2:30, right on target if no slowing down but I knew I was going to. It felt forced all the way to the half. By mile 16 my legs where shot and had enough. This is where I mentally gave up and didn't care if I walked and sat down to fix my shoe. I just wanted to stop but I forged on. By this time there weren't many runners near by and the thought of I hope I'm not last kept crossing my mind. It's werid running in a different country to see the KM's keep getting bigger and bigger and having the spectators shout at you in Danish. I know Danish so that was helpful. My Garmin was measuring longer and that was frustrating. My DH came looking for me at the end and wasn't helpful at all. He wanted to know why I wasn't running and what was taking so long. I told him I didn't care and just wanted to stop walking. I told him I was walking until I could see the finish line and slightly run across it because I only had enough in my legs to do that. I saw the end but didn't care and made it across with an annoyed look on my face. Final time was 5:49:xx. Yeah, my second worst marathon time. The second half time was 3:20.

Note to add: I was also 8 weeks pregnant at the time. That would also explain the fatigue and why my long runs weren't going as great as they should have been. I can't be too disappointed because of all the factors but I still am.

Next: Continue to run throughout my pregnancy and then stay active. Targeting a half marathon maybe at 18 weeks. Not going for speed. Just for fun. The time limit is 3.5 so I think I could do it. Then once the baby is born get back into shape and work on my half marathon time. Once I can get a sub 2 hour half, I'll focus on another marathon. I have to take off about 6 mins.

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