Beth Runs!

After sitting on my butt all winter, knitting and watching Craig Ferguson into the wee hours, it's time to get up, get out, and move!!!

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Consolation Prize

SF Progressive Marathon Finisher's Medal Side 1

SF Progressive Marathon Finisher's Medal Side 2

Well, it's not a Marathon Finisher's medal, and it's not a Half Marathon Finisher's medal, but it is a real medal, it's pretty, and I won it, and it's mine. Progressive Marathon means that I ran 23.1 miles on my own over several days and the final 3.1 miles at a 5K race during the marathon today.

The 5K was much harder than I expected. My legs and knees were fine (hallelujah!) but I was breathing really hard from the start and felt like I was going to throw up. The difficulty was surprising, as I've run 3 miles or more many times in the last few months. Then, I got home and looked up my unofficial finish time. I was running 10:40/mile: the fastest 3.1 miles I've run so far. In fact, my time may have been faster than 10:40. The results page says that the gun time was 8:01:02, but the chip on my shoe was timing from 8:00:00. See below.
SF Progressive Marathon Unofficial Results

I credit the increased speed to 2 factors: the forward lean of the ChiRunning style, which causes you to run faster or fall on your face, and the race atmosphere itself. I just can't stand being passed by so many people. Hey, I was in the top 25% of my age group! That's something!

Oh, there is one other factor: Michael running alongside me to spur me on. He got up for me at 5:30a.m. on his day off. I couldn't let him down!

Today, I focused on 3 things: maintaining the lean, relaxing my lower legs and ankles, and increasing my stride rate. I didn't bring the metronome I just got, as I thought its constant cheep might annoy other runners. But I did concentrate on taking smaller, faster steps.

The Full Marathoners started at 5:30a.m., and we were able to see some of the first finishers cross the line just after 8a.m., as we were running our 3.1 miles. They looked awesome... energized and fit and smiling. We didn't stay to see the slower runners cross the line. I think I was afraid to see what I might look like when I finally run my marathon. I'd like to keep imagining myself as an eagle, even though I'm really a penguin, as John Bingham calls those of us who are slow but stubborn.



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