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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I DNF.<br><br>
My goal was 3:35. Min. goal was to BQ, 3:50. Based on 1:40 half (7:39 pace) and 7:09 pace 10K in Oct. and a solid marathon training after that, I felt confident. The weather was the concern, but turned out to be much better than expected (a little rain, some wind, in 40s), as Jane said.<br><br>
I felt good and met a few interesting runners to chat with. I hydrated at every mile and planned to have gu at mile 6, 12, 18. My target pace was 8:10 and was hitting 8:02~8:12 until mile 12. That was where first sign of L calf cramp occurred. This was EXACT feeling I had mile 12 during my half in Oct in Grand Rapids. A dark cloud was appearing in my head. I stopped and stretched and hoped for the best. I had to keep stretching for the next few miles and my paced slowed to 8:15-17. I passed 13.2 mile mark at 1:47:28. I thought I still had a chance to meet my goal. Right after I saw Cathe on mile 15 (about half way), the calf completely froze up. Like a hard rock - some of you know what I am talking about. I went down on the side of the street screaming. You can't do anything about this (that I know of) for a while until the violent contration stops. I massaged it tried to stretch it. Based on the previous two experiences of this (one during a cool down after 10K, and the other after the Grand Rapids half), I knew I wouldn't be able to run normally for at least few days. I somewho got up and kept going limping. The 15th mile was 12;50. A quick math in my head told me I still had a chance for 3;50 if I could keep 9:30 or something. So I kept on moving forward. Stretched every 1/4 mile. I stopped a few times near Cathe and stretched while exchanging a few wards. THANK YOU for coming out and cheer us on, Cathe. 16th and 17th miles were 9:12 and 9;19. 3:50 was still possible if I kept the pace but I started thinking further damage I was causing to my calf. Also I thought about a possibility of running another marathon in a few weeks if I quit early enough. I guess my brain had a talk to my calf.. the 18th mile was 9:54. I told Cathe, as I passed her, I was done. No reason to go through this agony. (In hindsight, I should have quitted when the violent cramp occurred at mile 15. I think my R foot took an extra load in an effort to protect L calf. Still painful).<br><br>
The pain was much worse once I let the race go. I couldn't even walk well. I quickly changed to dry clothes and cheerd on Jane. As always, she dug deep and secured her ticket to 09 Boston (she was already qualified for 08 Boston).<br><br>
A huge dissapointment and heartbreak hit me last night really hard. I was so looking forward to getting this marathon done and taking some break. I was just tired of training for one specific race after another - I have been doing that since Dec. 06.<br><br>
I don't know what to do next. I was thinking to run another one in 3 weeks or so but there is nothing nearby. After realizing that my kids were behind in a science project preparation and other things that I need to pay attention around the house, I felt really guilty of being obsessed with my races and taking myself away from house AGAIN for an entire weekend if I have to fly somewhere to race. DH is a busy man and has his committments. There is one local marathon in 7 weeks. I don't know if I can extend my loooong season for another 7 weeks. Mentally I am fried. Plus, I have to figure out how to prevent this calf cramp. I think this will be another thread later once I get my energy back.<br><br>
Now I have two marathons in a row that I fell apart. This makes me wonder my 1st success was just freakish accident. Maybe I am more suitable for a half.<br><br>
Thank you, guys, for your best wishes. And thanks for reading.<br><br>
Yoshiko
 

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Oh no, what a bummer!! {{{Yoshiko}}}<br><br>
Rest up and start anew. Maybe it's just a salt or hydration issue? You'll get it figured out one of these days.
 

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Man, that sucks! But don't let it get you too bad. There are plenty of other races out there. Obviously it was the correct decision to stop.<br><br>
Does sound like you need to figure this out. First glance seems like only during or after races? Are you doing something different in training? Maybe it is the race effort that gets you? You need to analyze these things.<br><br>
Let us know.
 

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{{{Yoshiko}}} Sometimes it's hardest to do the right thing.<br><br>
Take that break. Don't make any decisions now. We'll be here to help you through it.
 

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(((Yoshiko))) Yah, you did look like you were hurting out there. Glad it was an easy course to DNF. You made the right decision. Stop so you can race again.<br><br>
Several runners were commenting that with all the left turns, their left leg was taking a beating.<br><br>
There's a great little 'thon down here the first weekend in April. Maybe we can do that one together?
 

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Oh that is rough, I know you have been working hard for this. Glad you are okay ans hopefully can find another race. Shamrock on Mar 15 is open here in VA.
 

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{{Yoshiko}} Based on how you've handled situations like this in the past, I have every confidence that you're going to create one heck of a silver lining somewhere.
 

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Ouch!!! Sorry you had this problem again. The smart thing to do was quit and you were smart. Kinda strange this only happens during a race and not in your long runs in training. Are you trying to run way faster than you've trained for?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I am puzzled myself. My long run is 30sec~90sec. slower than marathon pace (I follow Pftzinger's plan - he suggests 10~20%+ mp, so a little bit faster than his suggestion). I don't think the delta in speed is too big. I did only one MP run - 15 miles total including 12 miles at MP (did a little faster at 8:01) without any issues. For the 3 occasions I had this cramp, a few common things I can think of is, (1) temp in '30s and (2) I wore shorts. I don't wear shorts in '30s during training. I had a plenty of tempo, speed work, 5k/10k race in much colder weather, but I have never worn shorts. Maybe that is it. But I don't want to prove this theory, however, by heading out for a training run in shorts in 30's!
 

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You may be on to something here. BrewDad wore shorts more often last winter at 45 and below and had all sorts of tight hamstring issues. He's stuck to tights this winter without any issues with the hammies.
 

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Yosh....<br><br>
Hugs to you.<br>
Take the time you need to figure out how best to recover from this. Go ahead and indulge a bit, too.<br><br>
Glad you decided not to finish rather than get injured.<br><br>
The one time I had a race like that I didn't even know if I could drive home (stick shift car, cramps in the "clutch" calf). I was soooooooooooooooo crying. You did great to get changed and get back out there.
 

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Don't pack it up... I've DNF'd..... 3 times, in the hospital once! Don't let this get you down. These are learning experiences to build on, try to figure out what happened, look into nutrition, salt intake, etc. You just need to figure it out and you will be back stronger than before. Just keep your goals in mind and keep working on it, you'll do it. <img alt="biggrin.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/biggrin.gif">
 

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Ironically, I thought it might be the cold causing the cramping. I had one run that I cramped terribly, and it was because I had caught a nasty chill during my swim, so my legs were tight at the start of the run and never recovered.<br><br>
You'll get it.
 

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So sorry to hear this - you're still wicked fast in my book!! Take care of that calf, and keep your chin up. You'll get your BQ!
 

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The cold and shorts combo could be it. My first marathon I wore shorts even though it was somewhat cold (40s) and drizzly. I did just fine until the course went near a body of water with a cold breeze blowing across around mile 10, then I got a chill and slight cramps and never recovered. I finished, but it wasn't fun. FWIW, I now train and race in the same clothes given the same conditions.<br><br>
Maybe you can prove your theory by racing in warmer conditions.
 

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DUDE!!!!! That BLOWS!<br><br>
But ya know what, it's just a race. You're bummed right now, and I SOO feel ya, but don't start feeling like a bad mom because of it. You're not. You're so considerate of your kids, you don't give yourself credit. Get the projects caught up, let this post-race-depression pass, and then decide what you want to do.<br><br>
{{{Yoshiko}}}<br><br>
Races are full of variables, many which are outside your control. So, you do what you do and you'll get what you can from it.<br><br>
p.s. I agree, in hindsite, you should have bailed after you could not get the calf to let go but I am VERY proud of you that you did DNF and you didn't make it worse. I can only hope some day if I am in the same situation, I have the guts to call it a day and fight another day.
 
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