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I Fret Like Woody Allen Sometimes.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013


I've run 3 half marathons and 2 marathons within the past 4 months. A rather aggressive race schedule for a man of my advanced years and limited experience. This coming Sunday, I have another half marathon scheduled.

The following week, a Sunday, I had speculated on running a 3rd marathon. I know it's too soon following my spectacular 2nd marathon performance. But, I recovered quickly enough from that, right?

I wanted to do this marathon for a lot of reasons. It was a very small venue, didn't cost much (very important) and they had acres of parking. It is taking place at a ranch - where they have an RV parking facility.

So I emailed the race director asking if I might arrive on Saturday, pick up my packet and stay overnight in their RV parking area. I forsaw no problem. They have an RV parking facility. Oh, I already mentioned that.

He got back to me within a day or so, and said he'd look into it. A few days pass, and I got a reply stating he was sorry but they could not accommodate me - no explanation as to why. But, he graciously supplied me with directions to a local campground which was 7 miles away. Not what I wanted to hear.

I emailed back thanking him for taking the time to look into the matter and for getting back to me.

So, I'm a bit peeved at the situation, for a short while. Then I stop the negative thoughts, and I figure maybe it's an insurance problem, so not to fret about it. Still there was an RV parking facility.

Probably this is for the better. I really am not ready to run another marathon at peak performance just yet. Still, it would have been nice to chalk up another marathon into the books. Even a slow one.

Sigh...

Thanks for reading and have a great day.



  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BUTTERFLY-1976 2/27/2013 12:56PM

    I agree with everyone else....wasn't meant to be. Might be fates way of saying take a breather....There are other races out there

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SEABREEZE64 2/27/2013 6:53AM

    I love SYNCHRODAD's answer!!!!

Anyway, running is fun whether it is a race or not. Go out... run around... and have fun!

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RUN4FOOD 2/26/2013 9:40PM

    I agree with SYNCHRODAD.
The other day you implied your body might need a rest so I think you should rest on Sunday for as long as it would have taken you to run this marathon.

Enjoy your rest. emoticon

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MASRITE 2/26/2013 3:44PM

    I think it's a sign telling you to rest!!

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CM_GARDNER78 2/26/2013 3:00PM

    We don't always know why things don't work out the way we want them to. We may not ever know, but it always seems that it ends up being for the better (for us!) I totally understand your disappointment and frustration though!! I would feel the same way! :-)

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CHEMCHIC2006 2/26/2013 2:50PM

    There will always be another marathon. Agree with everyone else.. wasn't meant to be!

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DALID414 2/26/2013 1:32PM

    He may have saved you from something.

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BROOKLYN_BORN 2/26/2013 12:27PM

    I understand your disappointment, but as others have said maybe this is fate's way of forcing you to take a breather. Rest and race another day and faster too.

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SYNCHRODAD 2/26/2013 12:01PM

    The other competitors in the race have been spared. Lucky them.

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KA_JUN 2/26/2013 11:13AM

    Sorry to hear, but perhaps when a door closes a window opens. emoticon

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LIGHTNINGRUNNER 2/26/2013 10:54AM

    Good attitude - sometimes things aren't meant to be and obstacles are placed in our way for a reason.

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NATPLUMMER 2/26/2013 10:16AM

    emoticon

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LINDAKAY228 2/26/2013 9:00AM

    Sometimes those frustrating "NO" answers are really what's best for us, although we don't like to hear it. Maybe your body really does need a chance to recover. They could have at least told you why though.

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KANDOLAKER 2/26/2013 8:52AM

    That would be frustrating, and not giving a reason for no RV's too. I'm glad you found something else to run instead. As always - all the best to you! Happy Running!!

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REMEMBER2BME 2/26/2013 8:48AM

    I can completely appreciate your frustrations. But I hate to say, I really do think that this race was not meant to be. I do however find it frustrating that they did not give you a reason. When I understand the why of things it helps me so much. Hang in there. You are totally kicking a$$ by the way. You must know that. I hope you know that.

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BIGPAWSUP 2/26/2013 8:40AM

    Sorry the race didn't work out but maybe it is for the best. Yes it would be FANTASTIC for you to have another race under your belt (you are amazing - I've told you that right?) - I worry about you pushing too hard. Maybe just enjoy a nice long run at home with no pressure?

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Have Fun Or Go For It.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

That is my question.

I have been running longer races lately, and closer together. I love doing them, and seem to enjoy pushing myself this way.

But, there is a price to pay. It's called recovery, and my training runs are mostly recovery runs lately. I haven't been recovering enough to go for a PR. I'm taking the frequent runs in lieu of PRing and that's fine.

In 11 days I have another HM scheduled. I know I could PR on this race if I had trained properly, It's flat and the last mile or so is a slight decline. My kind of finish. The weather should be pretty cool that day, too.

My knees are not 100 percent, and I must wear KT tape or a brace during my training runs. So, I can't push too hard. I'm determined not to reinjure the knee.

So, judging by past performances, I won't be getting a PR this next HM, but I will be out there having a good race. Also, will have the added advantage of being in a real RV park the night before the race - onsite. The event is actually held in a venue where there is an RV park onsite. How cool is that?

There is a local full marathon nearby that I am interested in. It is one week after my HM, though. Not too soon, if I take it easy on the half, right? Being a cheapskate, I don't want to pay for a hotel the night before. And I don't want to drive 2 1/2 hours to the event. So, I emailed and asked the organizers if I could park my RV at the event the night before. If they say "yes" I have to decide if I really want to do this.

Well, you and I know the answer to that, don't we?

Thanks for reading and have a great day.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANDY_54 2/21/2013 7:42PM

    Woo-hoo! You rock! Hope things turn out for you--and you stay injury free! P.S. I think you'll totally need a new and/or bigger bling bar.

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SKINNYPOWELL1 2/21/2013 11:10AM

    You are a lean, mean running machine. You've definitely gotten bit by the race bug.
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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CINERICIA 2/21/2013 6:41AM

    And I'm worried about signing up for a half marathon TWO MONTHS after my full. You are an inspiration. Not just for the racing, though you are a racing machine, but for how obvious it is that you are out there doing something you love every day.

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DALID414 2/21/2013 1:07AM

    You're officially addicted to running. As long as you are mindful of staying injury free, I say this is a good addiction to have. emoticon

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BUTTERFLY-1976 2/20/2013 3:36PM

    You are a running machine!!!

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SEABREEZE64 2/20/2013 1:45PM

    So awesome! Keep on running, but BE WISE and CAREFUL!!!!!

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LISAINMS 2/20/2013 1:40PM

    I found that 3 HM's in 5 weeks was a stretch for me. I enjoyed each one, but I would have been happier to hit a PR on the third as I planned (flat and straight). I think that as long as you feel good doing it and take care of those knees, then go for it. You can always control your pace. The harder you push, the longer the recovery.

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KA_JUN 2/20/2013 12:25PM

    RV & a place to crash prior to the race? Hope it works out, that would be awesome! Good luck!

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CM_GARDNER78 2/20/2013 11:33AM

    You are amazing!! I love to read about you pushing yourself!! Quite an inspiration you are! :-) Be careful with that knee though! We need you to continue to inspire us to be better people now, and as we get older!! :-) (((HUGS)))

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ONMYMEDS 2/20/2013 11:09AM

    With age comes wisdom, sometimes. There are exceptions to everything.

emoticon

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NATPLUMMER 2/20/2013 10:55AM

    I know you'll do it, but remember to take it easy...just enjoy :-)

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NWFL59 2/20/2013 10:47AM

    Enjoy yourself and be sure to take care of yourself so you can continue doing these 'fun' runs. emoticon

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LAURIE5658 2/20/2013 10:38AM

    You remind me so much of me. I know your racing season will be winding down when mine is revving up. Until then, give 'em hell!

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RHONDALYN10 2/20/2013 10:25AM

    You are an old salty dog but you know when to listen to your body. If it feels like you need more recovery - then take it. If you feel good, go for it.
A flat course sounds so great about now....

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SYNCHRODAD 2/20/2013 10:22AM

    You're old, you're smart, don't be dumb. You don't want Dirty Harry, the orthopedic surgeon standing over you and saying, "A man's gotta' know his limits."

Comment edited on: 2/20/2013 10:30:24 AM

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MASRITE 2/20/2013 10:22AM

    It amazes me how many races you have been doing. You are a machine. Could you please share some of it with me now???

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BIGPAWSUP 2/20/2013 9:58AM

    Wow! I can't even imagine doing 1 HM. You are amazing.

But I think you have to admit that the tone of this blog is a bit of worry. You know yourself and how hard you can push. No one else can tell you what is ok. Please, just LISTEN to your body. Better to have a so-so race, or heaven forbid skip a race, than end up on the side lines for months with injury.

Take care!

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BROOKLYN_BORN 2/20/2013 9:54AM

    Your persistance and focus amazes me. And here I am deciding if I want to do a 4 miles and a 5K on consecutive weekends. I'll just think of you and yeah, I'll sign up.

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Have Fun Get Strong Your Own Way.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

One size never fits all. One size fits many is much more like it.

We are all different. Have our own strengths and weaknesses. Advice on physical fitness does not suit us all.

Attitudes, like body strengths and weaknesses are variable too. Some are easy going non-competitive, and other may be driven to win. Or maybe you fall somewhere in between those two extremes.

There is a great deal of advice out there for athletes. Anyone who desires to be physically fit has much advice available as to how to go about it.

Much of it is generalized, one size fits all. There is always the obligatory warning to 'listen to your body'. Well, even that advice to listen to your body changes with each individual as well. Sometimes your body feels great while you are on your way to injury.

Much of the stuff I've read about running is excellent advice. But much of it doesn't apply to me. My situation is unique. I so want to say "very unique" here to stress how unique, but as I understand it, saying "very unique" is redundant. It can only be unique. But, I digress, sorry.

Most of the information I read pertains to runners who are younger than I am or who have been running for years. I mean, how many runners start running in their mid sixties, and then decides he enjoys long distance running?
The math just doesn't add up for writers to include that sub-category of runner. I mean over 60 year old runners who are newbies. So, they understandably write advice and programs for their most generalized readership. I once read a book specialized for older runners, and was very disappointed. It was just rehashed advice for younger runners with a sprinkling of warnings to do less and recover more. Well, duh, I knew that before I shelled out my money for your book.

With any type of exercise which requires great effort one should approach it knowledgably and carefully of course, regardless of age. But, use your common sense, be aware of your own particular strengths and weaknesses. Your willpower and level of concentration and determination are important, too.

I was inspired to write this blog because my spark friend Richard, (ONMYMEDS) commented on my recent blog. This blog was about my running a half marathon one week after doing a marathon at the age of 66. Richard, a very smart guy, said "I'm glad you didn't let conventional wisdom keep you from testing your limits. As with so many things in running, the amount of rest needed after a long race is only a suggestion and differs from one person to another."

Yes, I felt the need to test my limits that day, and Richard understood that. If I had listened to all the advice out there, I wouldn't have had a successful, fun run. Today, by the way, I feel great. Conventional wisdom says I should be experiencing delayed onset muscular soreness big time. Some use the acronym DOMS for this experience. Well, I ain't got no DOMS today, thankyouverymuch.

I realize we are all unique and conventional wisdom is not applicable to all of us. We may be running for fun, socializing, health, competition or whatever reason. Don't let conventional wisdom or so called experts decide when and where to exercise. You know more about your own body, it's strengths and weaknesses, and your sense of resolve and determinization to compete in or simpy enjoy a race-day. You be the judge, but do it wisely.

Thanks for reading and have a great day.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WINDSURFNERD 2/14/2013 12:24AM

    A thought-provoking blog indeed! I feel the need to relieve you of the mistaken idea that experience actually helps with running. emoticon At least in my case, 30 years of running hasn't given me anything that I haven't either 1) screwed up, or 2) disproven. I'm discovering stuff about how I train at 51 that I never knew at 25, so I've resigned myself to be figuring this out until I die...but I aim to have fun while I'm bumbling about! Enjoy your post-race recovery!

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ANDY_54 2/13/2013 5:07PM

    Really good blog. I think reading about running to start is a good idea, but it's just a start--you really do need to listen to yourself and your body and like you said one size does not fit all. So props for saying it: You be the judge, but do it wisely. Well said!

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GODIVADSG 2/13/2013 8:53AM

    What a great blog! emoticon

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STRIVER57 2/13/2013 2:02AM

    just looking at your comments, there don't seem to be so few of us (endurance runners who took it up around 60) either (yes, i count myself even 16 miles is my max for now). it is a question of knowing yourself and your body -- and that can be hard to learn to do at our age, for those of us who didn't learn it earlier (i think you did). good blog. good run. good luck!

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LIVE2RUN4LIFE 2/12/2013 4:55PM

    When it comes to advice, the objectives don't really change with age, but how best to achieve those objectives certainly can change (and usually does). I enjoying reading all the advice to try to decipher just what each technique (or workout or whatever) is trying to accomplish. Then try it myself and keep experimenting until I discover what I need to do to accomplish those results. Sometime it takes me far astray, but that's part of the fun.

So the advice to not run a half after a marathon is really advice to not run a half on very unrecovered legs. So, depending on just how fast you run your marathon (not everyone is going out there at peak race pace) and how well trained you are, your legs may be ready ... or not. That's a call only you can make (hopefully with ego set aside for a moment).

In my own experience (turning 63 tomorrow), the run/walk strategy for endurance distances allows a lot more leeway with the general advice because it almost always means I recover faster than conventional wisdom says, especially since I am rarely trying for a peak pace when I race.

Comment edited on: 2/12/2013 4:57:27 PM

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IFDEEVARUNS2 2/11/2013 12:15PM

    Oh yes, I know what you mean. I'm a new runner who started 3 years ago at 60.
Glad you enjoyed your fun run!

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JACKIE542 2/11/2013 11:44AM

    I love your blogs, I am so happy you are out there enjoying yourself. I enjoy walking and getting out on my bike again, I think I am doing pretty good. You are doing great an inspiration to me. emoticon

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KARRENLYNN 2/11/2013 11:37AM

    I think that they have to cover the legal butts by handing out general advice to the mass public, because as you stated, everyone is unique and they don't know your personal situation. I think it's on each of us to use our common sense. Stretch and test our limits while using information from others as a guideline to what we could accomplish.

Congratulations on your races and moving forward!

Karen emoticon emoticon

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BIGPAWSUP 2/11/2013 11:33AM

    Wonderful blog. I truly enjoy reading and learning from your experiences. I might be much younger but I feel lost in all the information out there. Then I see you and Onmymeds accomplishing such wonderful things and I'm really inspired.

Thank you.

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BROOKLYN_BORN 2/11/2013 11:26AM

    Great blog! But hey, I didn't know that an expert advises that after 50 I shouldn't be running 2 days in a row (from a comment). Oh well, too late now. 15 years too late. As you said, one size never fits all.

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ONMYMEDS 2/11/2013 8:35AM

    Vic,
Good blog. Im honored that you were inspired to write it based on my comments, although I must apologize for giving you the false impression that Im a very smart guy.

I am no longer surprised by the parallels in our running experiences, but I am always pleased when I read about them in your blogs. I particularly like the following paragraph in your latest.

With any type of exercise which requires great effort one should approach it knowledgably and carefully of course, regardless of age. But, use your common sense, be aware of your own particular strengths and weaknesses. Your willpower and level of concentration and determination are important, too.

This sums it all up very precisely. Because there is so much information out there, and whether applicable or not, so much of it is contradictory that using our common sense is very important. And when all is said and done, and the training is over and the race is on, it really does all come down to willpower, concentration and determination.

I think I know the book you are referring to and I agree with your assessment 100%. We may need to write our own book.

Keep up the great work, my friend.

Richard


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CAROLCRC 2/11/2013 8:32AM

    Bless you for not modifying "Unique" - it's one of my pet (if petty) peeves.

I found Joe Henderson's book "Running Past 50" to be helpful, if generic. It introduced me to the "rule of 2 - never run more than 2 days in a row - and never skip running more than 2 days in a row". Works well for me (who started running lin late 40's - in my 50's now). It does seem like everyone my age has been running for 20-30 years, and I often feel like a newbie in the face of their experience.

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KA_JUN 2/10/2013 8:59PM

    Good blog, lots to masticate on there. I'm similar, in that it takes a lot to move me to action, but once I'm going, I'm a boulder that can't be stopped until I come to rest at the bottom. Glad to hear you're pushing your bounds of comfort!

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HDHAWK 2/10/2013 2:35PM

    Richard made some good points. I guess you'll have to write that book on being a newbie runner in your 60s! Congrats!

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DALID414 2/10/2013 2:31PM

    Wow! I hadn't realized you wouldn't have placed second if you hadn't ran! Just like the lotto: you can't win if you don't play. Unlike the lotto: you win just by finishing
emoticon again Vic

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CM_GARDNER78 2/10/2013 12:42PM

    I'm glad that you wrote this blog! It is so true...and you know your body better than ANYONE who's written a book! ;-) Keep doing what you know is good for you - and keep blogging about it too! :-)

Glad you're feeling good!

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KANDOLAKER 2/10/2013 11:11AM

    So true! I enjoy reading running articles/books/magazines - but realize that most of it doesn't apply to a 52-year runner like me. I'm glad you follow your own rules. For me, I find that running every other day is what works - but there isn't a long distance training plan out there that I could find - so I made my own. This makes my long run every 8 days, which I realize is hard for many people.

emoticon

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NWFL59 2/10/2013 10:09AM

    Glad you're feeling fine and no DOMS.

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ROXYZMOM 2/10/2013 9:57AM

    Very nice and very relatable. Last week my knee Doc told me I shouldn't be running so many races in a row because I just started running a couple years ago (age 47). The PT guy (a marathoner who is in his 60's) didn't agree with him. I figure if I train properly I can do any of them, which reinforces your point above. I do feel like Jeff Galloway's books seem to apply to any age group. I have picked up a lot of good running and nutrition ideas from his books.

Congrats again on your races!!

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NATPLUMMER 2/10/2013 9:51AM

    We are all an experiment of one..you have definitely proven that.
I'm glad your fun run went well and you are recovering nicely.

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Not Advisable, But I Did It Anyway.

Saturday, February 09, 2013

Today I ran a half marathon race. Exactly 6 days after doing a full marathon last Sunday.

This is not advisable. You need to rest up after the herculean effort of running a full marathon. Different advise is given on how much to rest, but everyone seems to agree you need to rest a lot. I guess at my age, 66, it is even more important to stay off your running feet for a while.

But, I had scheduled this HM before I scheduled the full marathon, then forgot about it. I saw it on my calendar a while ago and was undecided whether I'd do it or not. I decided at first I'd just walk most of it and run a little bit and at least collect my shirt, bib and participant medal.

Then today came, and I got in line at the start. I felt okay, not great, but able to do this. I started out with a 2 or 3 minute run, then walk for 30 to 60 seconds. Nothing etched in stone, I just ran as I felt. I got warmed up and was doing okay, so I got a bit more vigorous in the running portions. The miles piled up, and now I'm around mile 5 and I noticed I'm not getting that invigorated feeling I usually get at this point. I am more tired than usual. Okay, it's to be expected. Let's keep up the pace and see how I do under duress.

The miles go by, still run/walking. No second wind yet. Drat. I am going to have to push for the entire race. OK, Boilham, let's see what you're made of. Now I'm doing the guy thing, and trying to prove I'm not so old, and I just need to gut it out and push for a decent time.

I'm even passing a few slower runners towards the end. I am still at the relative back of the pack, but doing okay. Okay is the word I use most for this race, 'cuz I never once got that rush of energy where I felt like I could run forever. That's okay (damn, I said okay again) because this is now a test of endurance. I am into it.

Tired all the way, I pass the mile markers. Taking in water a lot and a couple of GUs. It's not too warm, but I am perspiring more than usual. My heart rate is higher, too. I'm thinking this is good (thought, I was going to say okay, didn't you?) because I need to push myself beyond my comfort level once in a while.

The last few miles whiz by. Soon enough I'm at the 12 and still running a vigorous pace. I tried to do the last mile without walking, but I confess I pretty much needed that rest, so I did walk. Then the last half mile was upon me and then down the finish corridor I went.

I glanced at the clock as a ran under - it said 2:17:34 and then a few more steps and I passed the finish mat.

They never posted my time on the time sheets. I guess I finished just when they were tabulating the awards, so it's good I took a look at the clock. I always forget to hit my stop button on my watch, so when I finally stopped my watch it said 2:18:20.

I went to the guy with the computer and he assured me he had my time in there. So, I won't know the exact time until I see it online.

But hey! I took second place in my AG. The guy who finished first had a nice time of 2:06:34, a pretty fast pace.

So I had a good race today, surprised myself with what I think is a pretty good time considered I had no right being out there running today. I should have been home resting. I feel great right now. No pain, or injuries, so that's cool.

I think I will take a bit of time off now. Unless there is another race coming up soon. Just kidding.

Thanks for reading and have a great day.

Edit: official time 2:17:42

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GODIVADSG 2/13/2013 8:55AM

    Way to go!!!! emoticon

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SKINNYPOWELL1 2/12/2013 8:31AM

    WOW, just WOW. Congrats on your finish time.

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STRIVER57 2/11/2013 2:39AM

    exellent! (also crazy, but that's ok. maybe even good).


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HDHAWK 2/10/2013 2:05PM

    Wow, quite an accomplishment! You deserve a big rest!

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RUNNER12COM 2/10/2013 12:20PM

    Good for you for the fantastic follow-up performance!

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DORAL33178 2/10/2013 12:01PM

    Vic, congrats on the race and your AG placement. You are like a good bottle of wine.....keeps getting better with age.

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CHANGINGHORSES 2/10/2013 7:42AM

    Wow, I cannot imagine that statement "I forgot about the half"??? You are incredible Mister. Now take some rest.
emoticon

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PMRUNNER 2/10/2013 7:34AM

    Thanks for the race report! It is hard when you never get your second wind, but it sounds like you had some great stamina and mental toughness to stay focused and keep racing. Keep it up!

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RASCALRACCOON 2/10/2013 4:39AM

    gulp! I will be doing my first half marathon end of March and i would be super happy with that time :| a little scary that you did that on a "slow" day!

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BROOKLYN_BORN 2/9/2013 7:51PM

    Wow! At this rate next you'll be telling us about your plan to run ultras. Not many could have pulled this off, at ANY age. Congratulations!

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BUTTERFLY-1976 2/9/2013 6:18PM

    You are a machine!! Your time for a good race, is faster than my trying my best time. Congrats on the 2nd in AG!!! So Inspiring!

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ROXYZMOM 2/9/2013 5:23PM

    That is a great time! Love your perserverance.
I would have run it too - it's that determination factor us runners have... We are nuts!

...and second place! Congrats! Did you get two medals???

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PIXIEMOM13 2/9/2013 5:13PM

    You, sir, are an awesome machine...and I'd be totally eating your dust. :D (dare I say... thats...er.... okay?) :D emoticon

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NATPLUMMER 2/9/2013 5:07PM

    emoticon

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DARLY55 2/9/2013 4:29PM

    Amazing!

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DALID414 2/9/2013 4:24PM

    Not bad for a 'good' race! Congrats on second place.

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KA_JUN 2/9/2013 4:03PM

    Glad to hear your mental dialogue! 2nd in Age group, nice! That cracked me up, well, oops, looks like I scheduled a run/event I forgot about, better get my shoes on, excellent mental perseverance, but glad you didn't push so hard you got injured. I have a bad habit of sometimes not knowing when to pull back to prevent extended injury recovery. An important skill to learn.

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BIGPAWSUP 2/9/2013 3:38PM

    Wow! I am completely amazed and impressed. You are officially at hero status in my book!

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SYNCHRODAD 2/9/2013 3:35PM

    You are a Sparker to be admired.

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ONMYMEDS 2/9/2013 3:33PM

    I'm glad you didn't let conventional wisdom keep you from testing your limits. As with so many things in running, the amount of rest needed after a long race is only a suggestion and differs from one person to another. We never know what we are capable of unless we try, and it's always better to try and fail than not try at all. Congratulations on another great race. You'll be needing another medal hanger soon.

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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COOP9002 2/9/2013 3:16PM

    I think it's time for you to get some rest. emoticon

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KANDOLAKER 2/9/2013 3:05PM

    You are amazing!! Congrats and I hope you will get some rest now. :)

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NWFL59 2/9/2013 3:03PM

    Okay Fine Excellent, now get your rest and allow yourself some recovery time! emoticon emoticon

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LAURIE5658 2/9/2013 2:24PM

    Vic, isn't this normal behavior LOL LOL? You know your body and it's limitations so just enjoy these races. It won't be long and FLorida heat will set in and racing weekends come to an end. You rawk!!!

Congratulations, my friend.

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SOUTH_FORK 2/9/2013 2:13PM

    Alright, alright... now go rest "a lot." emoticon Still, very impressive- you're a monster!

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KELSEY54 2/9/2013 2:06PM

    Wow take it easy now! Congrats!

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JACKIE542 2/9/2013 2:00PM

    Wow! I do think that is amazing! Hope you get a well needed rest right now. emoticon emoticon

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BERGBA7 2/9/2013 1:50PM

    Wow - I am hoping to run a half at the end of the week!
emoticon

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MASRITE 2/9/2013 1:49PM

    Really? You're time was my first half marathon time and I'm a little younger then you!! Okay, I have some major training to do!! Glad you felt up to doing it (even though I think you're CRAZY!!) And, congrats on an amazing finish!! emoticon

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KWEEKWEK 2/9/2013 1:46PM

  emoticon

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KNYAGENYA 2/9/2013 1:43PM

    Wow!

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The Almost Perfect Marathon - A Race Report

Monday, February 04, 2013

You know how once in a while everything falls into perfect alignment?

Today the weather was great, beautiful flat course, crowd support, food and water on the course. Beforehand, good training, lots of rest, good attitude, everything fell into place nicely.

Also, I had done some research on muscle cramping. Which was a big problem for me on my first full marathon. Two known causes - muscular overexertion, and low sodium (some say potassium depletion also). There is lots of anecdotal evidence that drinking 'pickle juice' can stop cramps. Use it as a preventative measure, or during cramping. So, I took 8 oz of pickle juice with added salt with me today. Tastes pretty bad but I had no significant cramping.

Yesterday I picked up my packet at the DoubleTree Hilton in Tallahassee. Tallahassee downtown is beautiful and the park across from DoubleTree is nice and had adequate parking.



Went back to my hotel for more rest. Fell asleep early that evening. Set two alarms, as usual, and woke up on time. Had all my 'stuff' ready. My room didn't have a coffee pot, so I went out to the RV and brewed myself a cup, and heated up some oatmeal, my usual pre-race breakfast.

My DW called and wished me well. She had craft fairs and art fairs to attend yesterday, so wouldn't tag along on this one.

When I got to the race site, I called my grandson. He was nearby and would see me shortly. He arrived just minutes before the start of the race, we said hello and I got in the crowd and placed myself near the end.



There were only 308 full marathoners and over 700 half marathoners.



Most of this run was on a small paved trail. Very enjoyable for me. Considering this was a smaller race with only about 1,000 participants there was a lot of support from the community. Probably had 20 groups of folks along the way. Some of them in costume! Even the road guards cheered us on.

The race got off to a slow start, maybe that was good, it forced me to start slowly. There was no room to accelerate from my spot in the back of the pack. I forgot to check my watch at the first mile but I imagine it was probably a 13/14 minute mile pace. Okay, I could make that up. I'd planned for an 11mm pace. Not being an elite athlete I knew my second half would be a longer time than my first half. I kept checking my watch and I was consistently running 10:45 or close to that - the miles ticked by. At the half marathon point the clock said I was right at 2:21 gun time - not bad, about what I wanted. I chugged on through to the turnaround which was at mile 14.


Coming back down the trail, more than halfway done, at mile 16 I see something out of place going on. About a tenth of a mile ahead of me, I see a woman coming towards me, look around, and turn back and go the other way! She was in the clear, and thought no one saw her. I sped up, and finally caught up to her and looked back at her bib number. I fully intended to report her, and I did. She was stealing from every other runner in that race, and possibly could steal an award away for someone. At the spot she turned back, she had effectively clipped about 4 miles off her marathon distance.

So back to the race, I was feeling great at this point. I took in a lot of 'GU' and water. My energy level was still very high. The miles were flying by. Maybe keeping track of my pace kept me so preoccupied that I lost track of my miles markers. I was often surprised at what mile I was passing. It seemed to be going quickly. At mile 20, still felt great, then I got some mild cramping. Took a couple of slugs out of my pickle juice concoction. The pain subsided. I think it began around mile 23 that I started to feel a loss of energy, but I had run so fast up to this point I felt I could break 5 hours easily if I didn't get into trouble.

I was slowing down. At this point I had been running with two other old coots, both in their late 60s. We chided ourselves for being at the back of the pack, but these guys, like me, were not about to give up. You could see the effort on their faces as they forced onward. I'd pass one or two of them, then walk for a bit, they'd pass me. Great fun - no competition here. I met and talked to several guys in my AG. There were a lot of older runners here.

Now I exit the running trail which had, in many places, a tree canopy and plenty of shade, now I'm out in the sun. My 'perfect marathon' began to get tough. Not exactly 'hills', let's just say a few inclines for the last mile and a half or so. The wind was really blowing now, too - directly into my face. This was tough going. I hunkered down, and pushed on, but it was really difficult now. Feeling a bit sorry for myself, that I was running up an incline against the wind, in the sun. But. My time was still so good, I knew I was going to finish under 5 hours. I was so glad I had that time buffer built in, because I was slowing down quite a bit now.

The finish line was on the track of the FSU campus. I ran through the gate onto the track and there was grandson Doug and his beautiful wife, Brandi. Smiling and clapping. What words can sound better than "Way to go, Grandpa, you're looking good"? Icing on the cake, for sure.



I struggled around the track.The announcer called out my name and hometown over the P.A. - another nice touch.

I had completed a second marathon a mere 3 months after my first. The kids came over to congratulate me, and I could hardly speak. I was really beat. I recovered really quickly, though.

My final time was 4:53:24. Almost 27 minutes off my previous effort! How did that happen? Everything just fell into place, that's how. The almost perfect marathon.



Thanks for reading and have a great day.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PMRUNNER 2/6/2013 9:38AM

    Your blog title reminded me of a Frasier episode where the two brothers go to dinner. When they come back, their dad asks how it went. They said it was great except for one small thing which bugged them. Then their dad asked, so it was perfect then? And they both agreed. Sometimes slightly flawed is perfect, it gives you something to go back and fix/do better the next time.

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CHANGINGHORSES 2/6/2013 8:42AM

    You are awesome! Thank you for sharing your running with us. It is very inspiring for sure!

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MBSHAZZER 2/5/2013 6:05PM

    Awesome, awesome and then some MORE AWESOME!!! Sounds like it was a truly enjoyable and perfect marathon. And you are darn fast!

Good on you for turning in the cheater as well!

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BIGPAWSUP 2/5/2013 11:10AM

    How awesome are you! This is fantastic. And I felt like I was right there with you! Wonderful and a huge CONGRATULATIONS!!!

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CM_GARDNER78 2/5/2013 12:33AM

    That is SO AWESOME!!! It sure sounds like the best day!!! Way to go - you should be SO PROUD of yourself!!! And WTG on reporting the cheater. Many people wouldn't bother - so good for you! You are right, she could be taking an award away from someone else....NO FAIR! :-(

Again, way to go!!! You are really awesome!!!

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MASRITE 2/5/2013 12:05AM

    So proud of you!!! Amazing that you did this one so close to the last and shaved off some time. Even better. Hope you're resting up and feeling good!!



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JACKIE542 2/4/2013 9:44PM

    This is great, you keep getting better. Way to go. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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PIXIEMOM13 2/4/2013 8:02PM

    Awesome race report!
(and you are way faster than this chick here!) ;) I'd be honored to eat your dust! lol

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MARATHONDAD 2/4/2013 6:55PM

    you have inspired me to do a full marathon buddy

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LINDAKAY228 2/4/2013 5:46PM

    Congratulations on such a wonderful race and how it all came together! That is so awesome! And that is a lot of time shaved off your previous one! Way to go!

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DORAL33178 2/4/2013 5:28PM

    Congrats Vic, on a wonderful race.

You had a perfect marathon from where I am sitting....and reading. Nice weather and not having a run in with a Lincoln while on a motorcycle will do wonders for your back. All jokes aside, I am so proud of your time. You put in the time and also prepared yourself well with hydration and nutrition; all you had to do was get out there and put one foot in front of the other. Glad to hear you reported the person trying to cheat. It could have cost someone getting an award.

Rest up and then......get back out there!

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BROOKLYN_BORN 2/4/2013 5:13PM

    I'm so happy for you! You prepared well and got the result you deserve.

I hope you really did report that woman. There are more people out there who cheat than you would realize. If somebody doesn't report them, they will continue to do it. I know this from personal experience which I'll explain later.

For now, Congratulations!! You make all of us old folks proud!

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LISAINMS 2/4/2013 4:32PM

    Fantastic! I love races that come together so well. Boo to cheaters. I also have difficulty with cramping due to dehydration and/or electrolyte imbalance. I have found that eating the Shot Blok Margarita flavor with higher sodium has really helped. There is also a Clif brand gu that has high sodium/potassium but I can't remember which flavor it was. Just check the label. That will help to prevent cramping.

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SOKKERNUT 2/4/2013 3:41PM

    Aaaahhhhhhh, emoticon I am so happy everything worked out for you.
emoticon on your time!

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CRYSBROWN1 2/4/2013 3:10PM

    This was definitely YOUR race!

Congratulations on your finish and shaving 27 minutes off your previous time too!

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WALKINGMAMMA 2/4/2013 2:41PM

    emoticon emoticon You did AMAZING!!!!! great blog too!

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QUAIL75 2/4/2013 2:33PM

    emoticon Congrats!

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RAINEMARIE214 2/4/2013 2:33PM

    What a great race report! Congrats on your PR!!

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KANDOLAKER 2/4/2013 2:28PM

    Excellent for you! Congrats on such a great run, and to cut so much time off your PR - just incredible. Loved reading about your race and thanks for the inspiration. I cramp too towards the end of long runs, and have heard about pickle juice - but just haven't tried it yet. Sounds yucky, but has to be better than the pain. Again, kudos and congratulations!

emoticon

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NINJALINDA 2/4/2013 1:57PM

    Congratulations on such a wonderful effort! I'm nearing the end of marathon training, and just hoping I can 1) cross the finish line & 2) do it in the required timeframe (7 hours). I can only imagine doing it in less than five...

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KA_JUN 2/4/2013 1:31PM

    Awesome, just, awesome race report! Ach...sandbaggers/cheaters never win. Liked reading about the pickle juice, the camaraderie of your fellow racers as you went on and took heart from them struggling alongside you, felt like I was there racing.

Ending with your family at the end, that's great! Congrats to you on your accomplishment! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SALLY_MANDER 2/4/2013 12:51PM

    Way to go! You are such an inspiration :) Congratulations on both your runs and on your new PR!

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GODIVADSG 2/4/2013 12:27PM

    Way to go! Congrats!

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CHRISGORGME 2/4/2013 12:27PM

    Amazing! emoticon

emoticon

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NATPLUMMER 2/4/2013 12:07PM

    emoticon You did great!!! Congratulations!

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ADAMM9 2/4/2013 11:54AM

    Congrats on the huge PR!

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JOPAPGH 2/4/2013 11:38AM

    Way to cut off time from the first marathon! Sounds like a near perfect second marathon.

I hope to run a marathon with a smaller field soon, but it won;t be my next one. Marine Corps marathon was like roller derby from beginning to end.

Do you have a third lined up?

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NWFL59 2/4/2013 11:25AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon That's a lot of time off from your previous marathon! Congratulations! emoticon

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SYNCHRODAD 2/4/2013 11:22AM

    Thank you for an encouraging and uplifting blog. I've been through Tallahassee to go to the Ironman in Panama City Beach, supporter for my son in law. He mentioned that the "flat" courses around there can get awfully steep across the smallest bridge when he is running. Thanks for the story and congrats on your time and pickle juice.

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WINDSURFNERD 2/4/2013 11:18AM

    A perfect race report! Congratulations on walloping your previous time...it sounds like you had a GREAT race! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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BUTTERFLY-1976 2/4/2013 10:48AM

    AWESOME!!!!! Sounds like you had the perfect race.
Congrats on shaving 27 minutes off!! That's amazing!!

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BUTTERFLY-1976 2/4/2013 10:48AM

    AWESOME!!!!! Sounds like you had the perfect race.
Congrats on shaving 27 minutes off!! That's amazing!!

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SRVFREAK176 2/4/2013 10:34AM

    MOST EXCELLENT!!! THANKS FOR SHARING!! AMAZING YOU ARE! YOU INSPIRE ME! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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DALID414 2/4/2013 10:32AM

    Great job!!
(How dumb for that lady to CHEAT! What's the point of signing up? I would have reported her too!)

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IFDEEVARUNS2 2/4/2013 10:21AM

    How wonderful! emoticon

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LAURIE5658 2/4/2013 10:09AM

    Oh Vic, how wonderful!! I am so proud of you and we will take those perfect alignments as we get them. You RAWK!!!

Congratulations!

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PMRUNNER 2/4/2013 9:51AM

    Great job! You sonded a bit discouraged after the first one. I am glad to hear that you were much better prepared (physically and mentally) for this one which resulted in a great race. You definately don't sound discouraged anymore!

Looking forward to hearing about your next train up and race!

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ROXYZMOM 2/4/2013 9:19AM

    That is a great PR!! You were totally prepared for this one and demonstrated what happens when one trains correctly. I am glad you were able to continue to enjoy the run after you saw the cheater. I would have been so ticked!

That is so nice that your grandson and wife went. They must have been so proud!

So, of course I have to ask ...when is the next one?

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FLGIRL1234 2/4/2013 8:18AM

    Shaving 27 minutes off your time is alot considering you just did the first one only a couple months ago....sounds pretty perfect to me. Great work!

emoticon emoticon

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SKINNYPOWELL1 2/4/2013 8:18AM

    What a great race. What an emoticon time, way to go. You are truly inspiring.

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MIRAGE727 2/4/2013 8:14AM

    Outstanding achievement!
emoticon

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CINERICIA 2/4/2013 7:57AM

    What a lovely race report. Thanks for the great morning read and congrats on your time. Excellent!

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SWEETNEEY 2/4/2013 7:51AM

    emoticon Ours is not to question why. Keep on Truckin.

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ONMYMEDS 2/4/2013 7:44AM

    Great job, Vic!! You'll be qualifying for Boston before you know it.

Let the love bombing begin.

emoticon

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DARJR50 2/4/2013 7:43AM

  Great job. Keep it up.

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