October 28, 2007

Mattoon Half Marathon (and Ogden Marathon)

Back in Black...my toenails, that is.

A week after the Indianapolis Marathon, I tried to redeem myself at the Mattoon Beach Multisport Half Marathon. The weather was blustery with temps in the 50s and stiff winds so I decided to wear my long sleeve shirt from the Ogden Marathon. While I was standing at the starting line a lady came over to me and she was wearing the exact same shirt! She teaches athletic training at Illinois State but her parents live in Logan. Of all the place to see someone else in an Ogden Marathon shirt, I won't have guessed it would be in Mattoon, IL.

We ran together for the first 3 miles. I started out a little faster with the wind and my back and slowed down with the head wind. I don't know why the graph shows such a drastic drop in pace at mile 8. A technological malfunction, I guess. I did feel good the last few miles particularly with the wind at my back. My legs were a little tight but other than that I felt much better than I did the week before in Indianapolis. It was nice having Lesa at the finish line since she wasn't able to make it to the Indianapolis marathon.

Next up? Tecumseh Trail Marathon on December 1.

Indianapolis Marathon (#20)

Who are they?

When: September 20, 2007.
Me and Ethan Garrett.
Recall: I wore #500 in the Indianapolis Marathon and these are the two pictures I was emailed saying they were me. Not close on both accounts. I looked through all the pictures and didn't find one of me. So they only evidence I can post that I ran the marathon is the graph from Nike+ below. Notice I did slow down a bit over the last miles but not as much at the end as the graph shows because I didn't stop my "workout" until 10 minutes after I cross the finish line while I was in line getting a hamburger. (My actual time was 4:39, not 4:49.) I honestly didn't feel at the "top of my game" that morning and tried to keep a slow but steady pace which work until mile 19 where I slowed consistently tapered my speed until the finish. Overall, a disappointing marathon both in performance and course. Ethan, who ran Washington D.C. with me finish with a new PR!
While many reviews of the course are positive, but I felt there are so many "out and back" sections that you are left with a feeling having run in a lot of small circles rather and a long distance. Not my favorite marathon (see the top 10 list below).
Rating: 3/5 carbs

Top Ten Reason to Run/Not to Run the Indianapolis Marathon.

10. The scenery along miles 1-3, 9-11, 13-14 and 24-25 is beautiful (good) while the rest is stickin' boring (bad). "Oh, look at this subdivision I'm running through. It looks like every other subdivision in the USA that was built in the 1980s. I'm so glad I drove all the way to Indy to see this."
9. At mile 15 I got a pre-opened gel packets (good) that left me with gel oozing all over my hands as I grabbed it (bad). "May I have another water please?" To pour over your head? "No, to wash my hands off with."
8. With the out and back course see the leaders' final push for the finish at mile 24 (good) while you are only at mile 14 (bad). "Very bad"
7. Free hot off the grill burgers for all finishers (good) with only Gatorade to drink (bad). "Like I didn't get enough of that watered down pickle juice the course! Where's the cold DP?"
6. Finishers get a cool looking, multi-colored medal (good) that is so small it looks like a lapel pin (bad). "Or, a tie tack!"
5. The course can easily handle the usual couple thousand runners (good) but the Chicago marathon debacle caused 5000 runners to show up (bad). "We were actually had to run single file through a narrow but short path that led into and out of the Fort Harrison State Park."
4. Midwestern hospitality was at its best as the locals cheered you on over the last mile (good) as did a few half-marathon finishers who thought it would help it they told you 'You can do it. You're almost there' (bad). "Hey buddy, I don't need a half-marathoner encouraging me. Go do one more "lap" and then I'll listen to you."
3. The course is relatively flat (good) with the only hill coming at mile 25 (bad). "One lousy hill in all of Indiana and it has to show up at mile 25?"
2. Seeing with a former student on the course (good) who passes you for good at mile 24 (bad). "Hey, April. I can go back and change your grades!"
1. Short lines for clean Port-A-Potties (it's just good with no bad) "But the sum of the bad out weigh the good making this a one time only marathon."