This New York City Marathon thingie...let's call this my 'lessons learned about marathoning' marathon.
Plan was to run this marathon at an easy long run pace, since I wanted to really take in the crowds and have a planned 65K ultra (trails, hilly...love it!) planned on November 27th. The New York City Marathon would make a great training run for that one. Plus, I ran a 3:42 marathon at the Amsterdam Marathon just 3 weeks before the NYC Marathon, which is superfast for this slowpoke (don't expect anything like it again anytime soon ;)! Slowpokie is back in town! ;)). I was still riding high on that one. Anything around 4 hours would be okay for a long run pace marathon.
Plus...running the NYC marathon at an easy pace was the only way to go, since:
a. I was in the middle of the Kidney Stone bonanza. A kidney stone and the pain that comes with it, won't do much for your fitness. Enough said.
b. I'd sprained my ankle 2 weeks before the marathon. Badly sprained it. Still hurts, still can't wear heels. And it's still slightly swollen. Running a marathon on it might have something to do with that. Just might. ;)
c. Stomach bug. Oh yeah. Caught that one just 2 days before the marathon. Spent the night pre marathon in the bathroom and ended up feeling sweaty and nauseous from mile 12 on. And I puked...but more about that later. ;)
Barbora was in town to run her first marathon! Totally talked her into letting me pace her for a bit. :) She did great! Read her full report here! It's fun, promise! :)
Since Barbora and I were both running for Team Hole in the Wall, we had the same bus to the start. Chatted the ride over to Staten Island away. Would have been great to have a bathroom on that bus, though....
The Team Hole in the Wall tent at the Charity village was amazing: no lines to use the bathroom!!! Woohooo!!! :) And a warm place to hang out before the start. Time flies when you're having fun, and before we knew it, it was time to head over to the corrals. We talked the crew into letting Barbora into my corral (I had the 'higher' BIB), so we could start together. :) It wasn't too long till 'New York New York' was playing and it was time to head to the start line. Woohooo!!! :)
Crossed the start line, and it was on! Time to enjoy the heck out of this marathon. The crowds in Brooklyn were amazing!!! Same goes for the crowds in Queens. Right before entering Queens not only my ankle started to play up (as in...trying to get twice its original size: ouch!!!), but my tummy was no longer cooperating. I can only hope Barbora missed the smelly part of it. ;) Passed the Half Way mark in an easy 1:59. :) And yep, Barbora, you can easily run a sub-4 marathon with a 1:59 half split. ;)
By the time we were heading for Manhattan (First Avenue), I was truly feeling sick and swallowing down little vomit burps. Nothing to freak Barbora out with (it was her first marathon, I didn't want to scar her for life ;)), so I kept chatting away. ;) She didn't even strangle me for continuing to tell her to take the 'downhill' sections to recover. :) Meanwhile, all I could think was 'where the ef is the next bathroom!'. Our splits were nice and even, and on sub-4 pace. :)
Taken at mile 18-ish. I look way better than I felt (that is...'ready to throw up'). And yep, I also stole this one from Barbora's blog.
And this one. ;) Check out the cool Team Hole in the Wall tattoo on our quads. Uh-huh...badasstinistas for life! And yes...I know...short skirt...get over it. ;)
By mile 20 my ankle was killing me. Two miles later (mile 22) I told Barbora to go and kick those last 4 miles' butt. I'd checked the splits on Mr Garmin at mile 21 and knew we were running at a comfortable sub-4 (not a 10 minute - sub-4, but still a sub-4) pace. With the extra endorphines of 5th Avenue and the even splits we'd ran, I knew she would fly through those last 4 miles. However, my ankle did not feel good (from mile 5 on), and with the planned ultra in just 3 weeks, that freaked me out...big time! I was in pain...and limping. Plus, at that point I was truly feeling sick because of the stomach bug. Cramps and I felt nauseous. Truly nauseous. And that didn't really help the legs to keep going. Add to that the toll I'd paid for the kidney stone thingie, and I was pretty much feeling blah. Two miles later (mile 24) I forced my way through the crowds to throw up. And throw up. And throw up. In Central Park. Classy. But, you know, that's just how I roll. ;)
Made it to the finish line in 4:10:43. Three weeks after running a 3:42. Oh yeah....slowpokie is back.
Then again, I was going for a marathon at long run pace, and this is long run pace. ;)So what the heck am I complaining about. Let me blame the kidney stone/ankle sprain/stomach bug, okay? ;)
Oh, and when crossing that finish line...I looked like sh#t.
On a more positive note: despite of still feeling nauseous the next day (bloody tummy bug), I did not experience any muscle issues (despite of the ankle...duh). Fresh legs - woohoo! :)