The Sixth Time’s a Charm

On Sunday, I ran my sixth and final marathon. Leading up to the marathon I was so burned out from training for my fourth full marathon in the last 12 months that I didn’t stress out about it. I chose the marathon because the temperature is usually in the 40s and 50s; however it ended up being in the 50s and 60s. In fact at the beginning of the marathon the MC said that most won’t get a PR due the higher temperatures (it was in the 70s at the end of the race). That gave me a good excuse if I didn’t PR. I also was resigned to the fact that I probably would never break 4 hours in a marathon given that my previous PR in five tries was 4:08:58. The race started at 6:15 a.m. and leading up to the race it was smooth. The marathon started over an hour before the half marathon so parking, the porta-potties, and finding a dry warm place to stretch was not a problem. Being a smaller race, it wasn’t really crowded at the beginning of the race like the L.A. Marathon. I started out the first mile at a 9 minute pace. At mile 7 I was under an hour, and at the mid-way point I was around 1 hour and 50 minutes. I thought I was going out to fast and would soon regret it, but I was feeling OK so I kept the pace. Soon after I lost half of my salt tablets while reaching for them. Trying to keep calm I thought if I got to mile 20 in 3 hours, I would have a shot at a PR. I past the 20 mile marker in 2 hours and 50 minutes. I started cramping at mile 22, but fought through it. By mile 24 I thought 4 hours was possible, so I just tried to enjoy the view for the last couple of miles. I really didn’t think I could break 4 hours, and am still not sure how I did it. I know God kept me calm and answered my prayer of just doing the best I could. I am glad that after 8 years (4 10ks, 6 halfs, and 6 full marathons) I finally accomplished the biggest goal I dared to dream: A sub-4:00 marathon! Praise God. I can officially change big bucket list item #2 to… Run a sub-4:00 hour marathon (Carlsbad 2014)

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