Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Shamrock Marathon Race Report

Decided to take off a day earlier then planned and glad I did. I found a hotel that had a room for friday evening and it was only $55 per night, wasnt even worth that! I inspected the mattress upon arrival for bed bugs. They "upgraded" me to a king room since it was just me and they had someone else needing 2 queen beds and my upgrade included a hot tub bathtub...LOL trying to step into this and out of it to just shower was an experience. On the wall and ceilings the pipes and rust were showing, I was glad I was only there one night. I woke up Saturday am and got out of there fast, stopped to grab a sandwich at Panera and a bagel for race morning then headed over to the expo to check things out. It was a nice expo and got myself last years finishers hat, it didnt have the year on it so I thought for $3 why not!! After that I went to see if my regular hotel was ready but it wasnt, I did get checked in and decided to walk around to find some lunch and the hotel clerk called when my room was ready. I sThat evening I found a nice Italian restaurant for supper and laid down around 10pm. I woke up around 7am and had my bagel dipped in some peanut butter, a diet dew and a banana about 40 minutes before the start. I have been having some ITB issues so I decided to wear a strap on my ITB and hope it would keep it from acting up. I wasnt sure what the weather was going to be like so I packed shorts, a skirt and some knickers with a lululemon tank top. I chose the shorts and I have ran in them for some 16 milers without problems same with the style of tank top. There is just one pock in the shorts and I stuffed my gels in it but the weight of them kept trying to tug my shorts off me so I left only one gel in the pocket and ran with the others for awhile until finally sticking one inside the panty liner of the shorts and ate one about mile 6 which was much earlier then normal but I was tired of carrying them. The course headed down the main street then up a highway type ramp which took us away from the beach for awhile and over towards Camp Pendleton. It was around mile 8 when we went thru the marine base and this was the highlight of the race for me. It was actually kinda emotional as well and you wanted the entire 26.2 miles to be right there! Groups of soldiers lined the base, some in dress uniform, some in green camo, some which appeared to be bootcampers dressed in white. They roars and chants were so encouraging all you could do is run and smile. I felt a little discomfort from the ITB strap and while running just reached and tugged it a little to change the position.It was probably about mile 14 or so that I decided to stop and move the strap and when doing so I found I was covered in blood from where the velco had rubbed. It didnt hurt too bad but I looked awesome! I also could feel my inner thighs starting to rub together and knew that was going to cause some discomfort soon, I didnt have any or bring any body glide but I had run a couple longer runs in those shorts without a problem. When we came back to the beach we got to run on the boardwalk next to the ocean, it was very pretty but the headwinds were killer. The winds seemed to be blowing at us alot during the run and I kept thinking when we turn and head back it will be nice to be at my back, didnt seem like that ever happened though. It musta been around mile 18 when I noticed my thighs were covered in blood too, there was a medic station by the porta johns and I had to tinkle anyways, thank God they had some petroleum jelly. I grabbed 2 sticks full and rubbed them onto my thighs and jumped in the john to pee, my shorts now were also covered in blood and it was kinda embarrassing because it looked like I had a monthly accident. Oh well, I was covered in blood behind my left knee from the ITB strap rubbing and now blood on both thighs and my shorts - cool I've seen and read about people with bloody injuries finishing races, this was gonna be a good story. :-) It actually didnt hurt that bad. I had also heard there were beer stations on the course and indeed there were. I saw 3 of them, At mile 24.8 as we were heading back to the beach I decided to grab a cup of beer, why not! I havent had any alcohol since one night over Christmas at the family beach get together and that was probably only 4 or 5 times all of last year! It was a 3 gulp cup and I just had 2 gulps, there were several folks taking in a drink here, including a lady just in front of me. About a half mile up the road there she was puking LOL. I never felt labored during the run and wasnt trying to PR but things felt pretty good so I just kept going and when I realized I could probably finish in under 4:30 I sucked it up and just kept trotting away. My legs on occasion felt tired and my left patella had some strange sharp pains a couple times but all in all I felt pretty good. I finished in 4:29:14 my Garmin had me going 26.4 due to weaving in and out across the roads. Got my medal and then they gave finisher hat and finisher sweat shirt. My hotel was right next to the finish which was awesome, I decided I would go grab a shower and then come back to the after party since I was covered in blood. Once I got in the shower I realized I chaffed in many other areas as well. I put on some knickers and my finisher sweatshirt and headed out barefoot to the beach, the sand between my toes and the arch of my foot felt amazing!! I had an italian sandwich and chips while sitting on a big sand bank looking into the ocean. Each participant was allowed 4 free yuenglings, I had 2 and decided that was plenty. I walked up and down the beach with my barefeet for quite some time then went back to the room to find a place for dinner. I left Monday around 7:30am and stopped at Colonial Williamsburg since I have never been but quickly realized that is a much longer trip then an hour or so stop so I grabbed a map to bring home. I also stopped at The Greenbrier for their famous Banana Split!! It was amazing!It's funny cause I always try to remember more about the race while racing and when I go to type up a report I forget so much! After I am done I end up remembering and may come back to edit.

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