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<span style="font-family:Arial;"><b>Event:</b> The Marine Corps Marathon</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;"><b>Date:</b> 10/28/2007</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">Location: Alexandria/Roslyn VA; Washington DC</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;"><b>Start:</b> 8:00am eastern</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;"><b>Exec Summary</b> [fort hose who don’t want all the details] – This was my goal race for the fall season. Training began for me around June 1st and I was very diligent in my preparation. 5 weeks prior to The Marine Corps Marathon, I ran the USAF marathon as a training run and set a 3 min PR while sticking to my training pace plan. USAF time was 3:48:52 (then PR) Yesterday’s MCM time was 3:29:53. A 19 min PR almost to the second. My plan yesterday was to run even splits for a 3:30 time and I don’t think I could have done it any better. My parents and brother made the trip to DC for the race. My brother, a Captain in the USAF, ran a 3:46 on pretty much no marathon specific training (he’s an ironman triathlete and did a HIM two weekends ago). All in all, it was a great race weekend spent with family and track club friends, capped off by the PR that I was looking for.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">Race details by the numbers:</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;"><b>Chip time:</b> 3:29:53</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;"><b>First Half:</b> 1:45:23 (8:02)</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;"><b>Second Half:</b> 1:44:30 (7:5<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/cool.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Cool"></span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;"><b>Splits:</b></span><br><b><span style="font-family:Arial;">Mile</span></b> <b><span style="font-family:Arial;">Garmin</span></b> <b><span style="font-family:Arial;">Watch</span></b><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">1</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">8:16 (didn't press lap in the chaos)</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">2</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">8:00</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">16:37</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">3</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">8:04</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">8:07</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">4</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:16</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:27</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">5</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:54</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:59</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">6</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">8:07</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">8:12</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">7</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:42</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:43</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">8</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:55</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:58</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">9</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:52</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:58</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">10</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:46</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:53</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">11</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:51</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">8:03</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">12</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:53</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:59</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">13</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:54</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:58</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">14</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:53</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:57</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">15</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:48</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:58</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">16</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:50</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:59</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">17</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:55</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:56</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">18</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">8:01</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">8:04</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">19</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:51</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">8:00</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">20</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:51</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:56</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">21</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:49</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:52</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">22</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">8:00</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">8:10</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">23</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:38</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">8:03</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">24</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:54</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">8:04</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">25</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">8:03</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">8:15</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">26</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">7:58</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">8:40 (scratching my head, I may have not pressed the button)</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">27</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">4:42</span> <span style="font-family:Arial;">1:00</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;"><b>Overall Place</b> - 1258</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;"><b>Gender Place</b> -1095</span><br><span style="font-family:Arial;"><b>Division Place</b> - 211</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;"><b>History (brief):</b> Prior to this year, I was what you might call a casual runner. I ran 600 miles last year, and my race highlight was a HM that I decided to run on the spur of the moment by going down the day before and signing up at the expo. Then, this January, I decided that it was now or never for a full marathon. I trained and ran Country Music Marathon at the end of April this year. After a 3:52 marathon debut, I decided to select a fall race and try to cut that way down.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;"><b>Pre-Race:</b> Got down to DC from Columbia, MD after flying up there for work sometime after lunch on Friday. Got checked into the hotel and went the expo before my parents hit town. We (the three of us) met up with my fellow Birmingham Track Club team members for a bus tour of Washington Monuments by night. This trip included a stop at the Iwo Jima memorial where I was able to do some finish line course recon. The only negative was that it was pouring down rain on Fri night. My Dad went to Regan National to pick up my brother whose plan landed at 12:30 Friday night.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">Saturday morning, we went back to the expo. My brother tried to drop down to the 10K from the full marathon, but they said no. He then decided to suck it up and race the full distance. But, he brought light weight racing shoes, so off we went to the Brooks booth to get him new shoes. Basically, we went on a shopping spree through the expo to pick up items that he would need for the race.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">We went for a real easy 3 mile shake down run on the mall before going out to dinner and calling it a day. We fell asleep watching the Tennessee vs. South Carolina football game.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;"><b>Race Day:</b> Alarm goes off @ 5:00am. We needed to be out the door and on the metro by 6:00am. I wanted to meet up with my other Track Club people for a group picture in their hotel lobby @ 6:30, then walk down from Roslyn to the start area. We walked into their hotel @ 6:35 and apparently missed the picture. From there, we started the 1 mile walk to the start.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">The sun was just peaking out as we got past the finish line village and down onto the starting line. My brother and I said good bye to my parents and then kept walking to get to the bag drop. We found the UPS trucks near the pentagon in a parking lot. When we stripped off the sweats, it was cool and breezy.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">On our way to the start corral, there was a prayer, and the national anthem along with two CV-22s in a fly over. Totally cool.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">We make it into the correct corral and see that the cliff bar pace team pacer, Scott, was about 10 people in front of us. Unfortunately, that would be the last time we would see him. Somehow in the start confusion he and the group clustered tightly around him got out and over the mat while those of us just a few feet back got held up at the start, oh well. All this happened before the mats.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">One good thing was that Amy, one of my training partners from Birmingham, found me at the start and said that she wanted to run with me. So, it wouldn’t be a solo effort for me, at least for a while.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">Start: The howitzer goes off and the race is underway. In the mad crush of runners, it didn’t take us too long to get to the mats. My chip time differential was 1:11 or something like that. We were on the right hand side of the parkway going up to Roslyn. The crowd was huge…both runners and spectators.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">I needed to pee again! So did others. Just after the first bridge crossing, guys were diving into the trees. I decided to do the same. Good thing that I did because I peed a lot! I told Amy to keep an eye on those pacer balloons and that I’d catch back up to here. The pacer was about 150 yards ahead of us. I thought that if we caught them we’d have some time in the bank due to chip differential. But I didn’t think that we should work hard to chase them down especially in the first part of the course that was hilly. Better to save energy for later. So we let them go.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">The only negative that I know of in hind sight was that, on the right side of the parkway, we were very far away from the shortest distance between the starting line and the first mile marker. We made a long sweeping left hand turn while the left side lanes had a much straighter shot at it. My guess is that this added about .3 of a mile or so. But, that’s what you get in a massive marathon. I don’t think that the 1 mile marker was off; I just think that we took a not direct route there.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">Anyway, in the early race confusion, I forget to press the lap button on my Timex. Oh well, just hold even steady pace was the course of action.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">The first 5 miles of the race course reminded Amy and I of Birmingham. Very rolling, felt just like home. We’d done all of our training on this type of course, so we knew that we could both climb the hills and use the down hills for some extra speed without getting messed up, so that’s what we did.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">5 mile marker – we were right on pace. 40 mins and change. I told Amy that we just got our first virtual cheer from all the people who were tracking us online. That included my wife and kids, sister in-law, her parents, and all of my “virtual” friends online.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">From there, we just ran even pretty much all the way. The crowds at certain points along the course where just amazing. The south side of the mall was like the Alp ‘duez scene that you see in the tour. The crowd was spilling off the sidewalk and into the street. The path was getting narrower as you went on. At its most narrow point maybe 4 runners could fit through side by side.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">Amy had written her name on her bare arms and she got tones of cheers from people along the route. We became Team Amy since we were getting so many shout outs!</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">Across the 10 mile mat right on schedule and the to the HM marker in 1:45. So far so good. HR was even and I was feeling like I could hold this pace all day. Around mile 14 without any discussion about it, Amy dropped back a bit. She didn’t tell me that she was going to or that she felt like she needed to, I just happened. From then on it was all me.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">The 2nd half of the race is probably my greatest running triumph. I just used my Garmin for pacing and monitored my splits on my Timex. I held the pace between 7:50 – 7:58; and all of my actual splits were in the 7:50 – 8:00 rates. Every time that I need to step on the gas a little to hold the pace, I found that I had the energy and the legs to make it happen.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">Around me, people were falling off the pace. So, I started passing lots of people. The run down into Crystal City was very windy. But, the Brooks people were there with sponges for us to use to cool down and wipe off. That was a god send.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">Food and hydration – I had been taking Cliff shot blocks (2 at a time) every 40 mins and chasing them with water. In between, I’d grab about a half cup of PowerAde at the aid stations. I never walked to drink, and was please with how well, I did drinking on the run, since I usually choke myself when I try to do that. I did get liquid up the nose a couple of times, and sloshing PowerAde on your hands can be real sticky.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">I soldiered on at basically the same pace. I still felt strong @ 20 and 22. Things really didn’t start to get interesting until we were going around the pentagon. There was an aid station just before going down a circular ramp to head towards the finish. I took my last water and used the down hill for momentum.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">From 24 on, it was a bit of a challenge, but I knew that if I could just hold serve that I would get in under 3:30. The crowd started to pick up on both sides of the road near the finish. We did have to do that little out and back to get to the finish. It was about .5 mile up to the 180 degree turn around. That was a momentum killer. But after the turn it was a little up and then down hill until you made the right turn for the monument.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">I picked it up a bit heading for the turn and the gutted the shit outa it, going up the hill to the monument. By this time, I was just looking at the time on my watch display. I knew it was going to be close. I was in a painful all out sprint. I must have passed at least 30 people going up the hill to the finish line. I got over near the barrier and had a clear shot all the way to the line. The crowd was going nuts. I really don’t remember much about it.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">I didn’t want a finish line picture of me stopping my watch so I waited until I was a few steps over the mats before I stopped my watches. I looked down and my watch said 3:29:55. Wow, that was close. As long as my watches were close to the actual chip time, then I would have it.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">My worry was that they’re clock wouldn’t match my clock. But that was it. I left it all out there, nothing left to give. My training got me what I set out for. I could barely stand up not because of soreness but because of heavy breathing. The Marine medics were hauling away another competitor on a stretcher. I didn’t need that much help; I just needed something to lean on while I caught my breath.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">I used the barrier fence to get calmed down a bit. I proceeded up the hill and got my medal. In all the chaos, I didn’t see my parents on the other side of the fence. Turns out they were still down @ the 25 mile marker. I had slipped passed them without them seeing me at this point on the course.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">In the finisher village, I waited with a bottle of water for first Amy and then my brother. Amy got by me somehow but finished up with a 3:34. That’s a BQ for her. She was totally thrilled. She knew she had it in the bag so she backed off a bit instead of pushing on with me. But she was thankful that I held her back and even at the start.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">Shortly after, my brother came in with a 3:46. That’s three mins slower than his marathon PR from 5 years ago. That’s also the last time that he raced a marathon. However, this was his best day racing the marathon and he really enjoyed it. He had said that he would just run marathons as part of an IM-Tri. I think yesterday changed his mind. He had a little ankle soreness in the last 1.5 miles, but other than that he survived with just the usual soreness. The longest he had run in prep was 16 miles on the race day of the USAF marathon.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;"><b>Post Race</b> – we hung out a bit and ate food, walked around the village. My brother had a nice blood blister on his left foot. So, we went the crocs booth for him to get an ice foot bath. He also got a pair of crocs so he didn’t have to put his running shoes back on. I survived with no blisters for the 1st time ever.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">We caught the metro back to our side of town, near the capitol, and had pizza at Unos in Union Station. After showering and icing down a bit, my brother and I headed back to Crystal City to the post race party. We had a few free Michelob Ultras and caught the last 30 mins of the Spin Doctors.</span><br><br><span style="font-family:Arial;">All in all it was a great race and a really fun weekend. When’s the next one?</span>
 

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I love that you had both a Timex and a Garmin - way to gadget-it-up! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/biggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Very Happy"><br><br>
Really, what a great effort and damn, what I wouldn't do for splits like that. Excellent training, excellent execution. <b>Be proud Tim ...be very proud!</b>
 

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Great pacing. I'd love to hear how you trained to knock your time down so much. I debuted yesterday at Niagara Falls in 3:47:43 but I had hoped for sub 3:40. Winds from hell beat me down all day and I barely hung on to finish. My last two miles were about 30 secs slower than the previous 10.
 

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Wow! I am impressed with those even splits. And a 19 minute PR? Dude!
 

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Awesome job!!! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/notworthy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="notworthy">
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks. The Timex is important to me because I can keep track of my splits from mile marker to mile marker (the race course markers) regardless of whether they are in the right place or not. The Garmin gives you real time pacing information so that allows you to adjust before you get to the next marker.<br><br>
But, as I told some others, the only think that matters is their race clocks and their markers.
 

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Nice job on the race and great report. I think you ran an almost perfect race, especially the negative split. You have a great running career ahead of you.
 

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<b>Tim</b> again - good job!<br><br>
I'm interested in your nutrition plan because it's similar to the one I've developed as of late. 2 cliff shot blocks at a time. On my long runs I take 2 at 4 miles, 2 at 10 miles and 2 at 14 miles. For Richmond I plan to take 2 more at 18 and possibly 22.
 

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Rock freaking solid! Very nicely done...and <b>fort hose</b> who havenot run Marine Corps, let me attest to the fact that those last 2 miles are tough. After geting over the bridge and recovering in Crystal City you face a long gradual climb at a bad point in the race followed by a short steep body blow of a hill just before the 26 mil marker. To hold it so steady throughout really shows you trained well and raced smart - on an easier/more frgiving course, you're looking at a 5 minute improvement.<br><br>
Great job!
 

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<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/notworthy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="notworthy"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/notworthy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="notworthy"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/notworthy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="notworthy"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/notworthy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="notworthy">:notwo rthy:<img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/notworthy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="notworthy"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/notworthy.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="notworthy"><br>
Awwesome Job Dude!!<br><br><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/headbang.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="headbang"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/headbang.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="headbang"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/headbang.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="headbang"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/headbang.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="headbang"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/headbang.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="headbang"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/headbang.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="headbang"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/headbang.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="headbang">
 

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Wow. Just wow.<br><br>
You were handed a fine day to run and took advantage. Way to engage the race in the last 10km. Congrats on a fine training season - well deserved.<br><br>
Go Team H!
 

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oh.my.gosh. what a fantastic race! congratulations, tim!!!! way to go!!!
 

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Tim -<br><br>
Thanks for sharing, and great run man.<br><br>
I'm really looking forward to reading your post-mortem on the Pfitz/Douglas plan. I'm sure you have some thoughts on it.<br><br>
As for your next marathon...any chance I can sucker you into doing a little trail marathon in Fairbanks, Alaska in September??? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/biggrin.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Very Happy"><img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/wink.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="Wink">
 

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Wow, great race and report. It sure must be great to make a marathon plan and have it all come together at the right moment. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="http://www.kickrunners.com/forum/images/smilies/icon_cheers.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title="cheers">
 
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