AM: This was my first marathon. I chose the marathon as my first as it is a popular marathon in this forum and it has a great reputation among runners. I was happy to make it to St.George: what a great place to organize a marathon. And how many excellent runners. At the starting line I met a 116 timer he ran the stgm 15 times; he, 71 years old, said he is starting to feel it a little bit since he turned 70; after hearing that from a 71 year old there was no complaining and it was clear I have to finish the race gracefully!
For the race strategy: I took it very very very slow from the beginning; i tried to be above 8:00 min/mile pace in the first 7 miles and then endure the 8 - 13 hill miles and then start the attack at the 13 mle marker. At mile 13 my quads were starting to hurt; Mile 13 is even before the large downhile part. So i took it easy until mile 19; did the hill and then was resourceful until the finish. I was not able to split negative; My quads were dysfunctional and my legs were not fresh enough to attack in the second half. (Explanation: I ran 6 miles on the treadmill downhill every week; however i stopped doing this 4 weeks before the marathon). My legs were not fresh enough or better too unexperienced. For this race, the mental challenge was moderate (not to challenging) that probably means i was running too slow; after i saw that i was not able to run my BQ time and neither was able to run my goal time of 3:40 (because of my quads and the lack of structural strength) my mind faded around the mile marker 13; my focus came back around mile 18 so i prepared mentally for the hill at mile 19 and then kept it steady until the finish hoping not to hit any walls; also cardiovascular it was fine for; my pulse was 110 for the first 5 miles; the low temperatures resembled perfect race conditions. I walked every station and drank. I wish i could have but I was not able to attack the whole race with the exception of the last .2 miles which i ran in 6:31 min pace.
After finishing i walked about 3 miles. I hope this will speed up my recovery. I missed the STG marathon award ceremony. Congratulations to all the amazing runners of the blog; in particular, Fritz who obviously is now even better after his injury, which is good to read about. I waited at the finish line until the end of the race and applauded all the other runners finishing the race (Somebody walked backwards through the finish line!).
I know it takes years of training to be a marathoner. I hope that my body will adapt to the challenges of endurance running with my future training; i hope that my marathon experience makes me faster in the short distances as well. I wish i could continue to train right now (maybe that is a good sign in terms of the mental aspect; this marathon felt a little bit like a training run for the upcoming marathon where i hope i am able to race the whole distance).
Thanks for the advice from the bloggers of this forum; without the forum i would have not gotten that far or in different words traveled that far. Success isn't how far you got, but the distance you traveled from where you started, quote Steve Prefontaine. And that distance was far for me!