Friday, March 30, 2012
Finally bit the bullet and registered for a full Marathon. It will be the Rock N Roll Savannah Marathon in November of this year. I like the idea of a large event for a first timer. I may even use a pace group to help me out. Being such a huge effort for a man of advanced age, I am really going to attempt to just finish this race.
I started running when I was near the end of my 64th year. My goal was to do a Marathon before I turn 66. Pretty close to one year from couch to Marathon.
With our Florida summers being so brutally hot and humid, I will have to train very early in the summer months. Since I am relatively new to running, I have never trained during the summer - should be interesting. November is a long way off, should be plenty of time for training.
Saturday, March 24, 2012
Got our race packets last night and gotta admit, we were like little kids, pinning DWs first number on her new running shirt. She'd had about a month of training and was ready to run. Well ready to finish anyway.
I think we were more excited than we wanted to admit, 'cuz we were up and down all night! Really. We woke each other up several times. Going to the bathroom, or tossing and turning. She even asked some race questions in the middle of the night. "Vic, tell me, have you ever seen anyone trip and fall?" "Honey, how hard is a brick street surface to run on, compared to asphalt?" Yep, she had race jitters.
We'd set two alarms and the first one worked just fine. Got up at 5:30. The race was just a couple of miles from home and started at 7:00AM, so we had plenty of time. Oatmeal and half a banana for breakfast.
We found a parking place easily because we were so early. There were over 4,000 runners pre registered, so this was a crowded race!
We got into the corral for the 2 mile run. I was doing the 2 mile, and then a 10K directly after I finished. The 2 mile start time was 7AM and 7:30 for the 10K. So, I probably wouldn't see her again until after my 10K.
DW is no lightning fast beginner, at age 64 she was hoping for a 30 minute finsih time. Just before the gun went off, we gave each other a good luck smooch, and off we went. I thought I'd go for a fast pace on the 2M and take it easy on the 10K. It was sooooo crowded! The 2M went quick for me, and I finished with a 17:21 a fairly good effort for me. I took 1st place out of 7 runners in my AG for this one.
Not so with the 10K I am sorry to say. I had a disappointing run. I actually didn't think about refueling at the end of the 2M and they had only water at the water stations. No gel, no energy drink. I know that hurt me. The field was very crowded, and it was difficult positioning myself the entire race. Here is a shot I took with my phone camera just after the 4 mile mark.
The first 3 miles went great - the timer said 31 minutes at the 3M - and that was gun time, so I was doing better than that on the chip. Then I started to loose energy. At the time, it hadn't occurred to me why, but I knew I was not feeling my usual level of strength. Only later did I put it together, that I was out of fuel. I hadn't eaten anything since my oatmeal and banana at 5:30.
So, I just kept running, aware I was slowing down. Thank goodness the hills were mostly a thing of the past. Not so much uphill now. At the beginning there sure were. I could see my heart rate was not so high either, so I used everything I had to keep it up, all the time feeling disappointed and wondering why I was so tired. I was making all kinds of excuses in my head, told myself "hey you can't expect a PR every race" everything I have read told me to enjoy myself and stop fretting about the times. So, I tried that and it worked for a while. Until I hit mile 6 and it was well over an hour! 1:04 I think.
Oh man, I didn't like that at all. I had nothing left for a final kick, either. I just kept going as fast as I could, at this point the finish line was coming up and the crowd was wonderful, cheering and whooping it up and shouts of "big finish" "you're almost there" "woo hoo". Certainly generic shouts thrown out to all us runners, we were still almost shoulder to shoulder, but it felt like they were talking to me. Thanks for all who cheer us on, it means a lot to me.
I ran over the finish line, and looked for the nearest water station, walked right by the cute girl with my 10K ribbon. Yeah, I went back for it later, after I got my water.
Then there was another person handing me a different ribbon, this one for finishing the "Distance Dare" Hell, yeah! Two ribbons for one event. DW Chris was there near the water station, waiting with a towel in her hand.
We shared race stories and it was a great day. She had a 30:06 time by the gun, and she started back in the pack, so we counted it as an under 30 time. :) My final 10K time was 1:06:01. Came in position 14 out of 28 runners. Sheesh, I couldn't have run :02 seconds better to get a 1:05? :)
Later I did think about it and realized I need to be sure to eat something on the long runs. I certainly do on my training runs! Plus, I didn't have my morning coffee, or a caffeine strip. Excuses? Yeah, I got a million of them. When do I get to the point of just running for fun, and ignoring the clock?
Thanks for reading. I had a wonderful time this morning. And having the DW with me made it that much better.
Sunday, March 18, 2012
Had a wonderful time with the grandkids last Tuesday and Wednesday. They both were entered in a GNCC motorcycle race. My oldest DGS had problems with the bike and was unable to finish!
That's him standing in the middle.
2nd DGS came in 9 out of 17 - which was fine, 'cuz he just went up to the highest class in his AG.
Here he is, sitting on his bike, post race.
I felt great all day, that day, but my daughter and her BF where having some symptoms that they believed to be allergies. Watery eyes, runny noses.
Sure enough yesterday, after a ride to the last full day of Daytona Bikeweek for a few hours, I started to feel punky. Same symptoms, watery eyes, and runny nose, and generally tired.
Last night I slept 12 hours!! And, this morning DW and I went for her regular 2 mile training run. Felt okay, but not great. I am still undecided if I have a head cold, or have acquired and allergic reaction to pollen and orange blossoms. This is the season down here in Florida.
I am going to rest a lot as I have a Distance Dare coming up this Saturday, and it's also the DWs first race ever!!! The 2 mile first leg (for me) of the Distance Dare.
Sunday, March 11, 2012
Had some second thoughts as I typed my title, 'cuz these thing aren't easy at all. Like everything else in life, it's all relative. So, it was easier than HM1, but I still felt the pain and exhaustion. If I didn't have my trusty Timex Ironman watch to tell me my heart rate and pace I never would have believed how well I was doing.
Because of the time change to DST, it was dark at the beginning of the race. It was raining a misty kind of rain, not too hard.
A lot of people arrived late, so they had to postpone the start by 20 minutes. Many people were annoyed at having a later start.
Anyway, the race finally got going, and the cool weather and misting rain felt good as I started off.
There were a few hills in the beginning, but I did okay on those. Tried my best to keep a slower pace, but when I looked at my watch, at mile 3 it said 29 minutes, probably a tad fast for me for a HM. By mile 5 and 6 I was still running around 10m pace but felt okay. My dreaded 9 and 10 mile markers came up and l was still running 9 and 10m paces! I did slow down and walk at the water stations, but that was all the walking I needed for this race.
Now I am wondering why am I doing so well? I thought I'd be doing my 11, 12 and 13m paces near the end, just like last time. But, nope, I felt comparatively good. So I just kept plugging along. I never "hit the wall" or felt the need to walk a while so I could get going again. Don't get me wrong, my feet were screaming "stop stop, this really hurts" and my calves chimed in with the same response, but I continued to run my quicker paces. My watch was telling me so.
I really tried to pay attention to hydration and energy levels throughout the race. I used all the water stations, took Gatorade twice, one GU at 7.5 miles. Since I drank no coffee this morning and am used to a cup or two, I had a caffeine strip at about the 8 mile mark.
Every time I looked at the Timex it said 9 or 10m pace! And this was near the end of the race! I was one happy runner.
I found a bit of energy for an ending kick, not much, but I managed to pass a couple runners near the end stretch. To be honest, one guy flew by me as well.
And there was DW Chris with the camera and she did well and captured a good picture as I neared the finish line.
And another shot after I got my bling.
When they posted the results, I was happy to find I took second place (out of 9) in my age group. In addition to the bling, they gave me a nice plaque for my efforts.
Final time 2:08:57. Almost 13 minutes better than my first half marathon!
Wednesday, March 07, 2012
I have discovered much of the information available to us runners does not apply to older runners. The schedules, race time predictors are skewed for younger runners. Perhaps the small number of runners over the age of 60 makes us such a small segment that optional information for us isn't preceived to be much in demand.
It takes me longer to recover than most programs would suggest. I believe the training programs are skewed for younger body recovery times. This has been my observation by trial and error.
Also, I don't believe my observations are specific to me, that maybe I have a slower recovery time than other oldsters, or such. In fact, my recovery times are most likely better than average, due to my good diet, protein supplement addition and years of weight training and recovery experience, spanning well over 30 years.
I'm not complaining, just stating my own findings, with perhaps a word of caution to those over the age of 60 to listen to your body, and don't take the training programs advice (especially the longer runs) as a certain, injury proof way to train.
Get An Email Alert Each Time BOILHAM Posts