Sunday, 15 July 2007

Maiden marathon

Just got back from my one week trip in Melbourne... I guessed I should be posting about my holiday... but there are about 150 pictures to upload... and since I have received such overwhelming encouragement, I should only do justice by posting up a race report on the Perth Marathon I did a week ago (hope it's not too belated).

Li-Ann followed me to the race venue at WA Marathon Club Rooms at Burswood on Sunday morning. We got there about 6.45am. Ate my powerbar... and did some warm-up jogs for about 10 minutes around the premises. I also finished up a whole 600ml of Powerade. I met Rio, the guy who has been beating me for the last 2 triathlons. I figured out it would be a tall order to beat him that morning too.

It was nice having darling around during races. I had someone to talk to. She observed that many of the other runners are also very skinny... hehheh.

The runners gathered for the gun off, which was scheduled to be at 7.30am. I kissed Li-Ann goodbye and for good luck... and off we go!

I started at a comfortable pace... intend to start with a 4:45 per km average as I knew I would tire later anyway, regardless of how slow I start. The 1st km mark gave me a scare as my watch showed 5:19.97... it was either it was inaccurate or I was slowed down by the runner traffic from the start. I quickened my pace and the next 2kms were clocked in 9:08.58... I carried on this pace of 4:35 - 4:45 per km. I drank only sports drinks which were given out at every alternate water stations, approximately every 2.5kms away.

The weather was good. There were supposed to be showers... we had a few drizzles but nothing too disruptive. In fact, the clouds prevented us from overheating. The route was also scenic... we ran along Swan River and Canning River. I noticed that I am running alone most of the time... too slow for the pack in front of me... too fast for the pack behind me...

It was during the 12km mark that I felt some tingling sensation around my right toes. I knew these toes were turning slightly purplish over the past few running sessions but they did not hurt before this. I switched my mind to focus on other things... on how much I have trained for this... and how such minor aches should not upset me (thanks, dad for the Marathon Podcast!)

I took the first Powergel at the 20km mark. Yup, sis... I agree with you! Powergels do help... I feel myself getting stronger after eating it! At the 21.1km mark... the time shown was 1:38.53... that's almost 2 minutes faster than my previous half marathon PB of 1:40.45!

We made the turnaround slightly after the 24km mark at Point Walter... I passed Rio coming in somewhere after the 25km mark... I couldn't believe it! I was actually beating him! Maybe he was just running conservatively...

I was still able to keep up the 4:40+ per km pace up until about the 30km mark. I downed my 2nd Powergel... but this was where it soon hit me... I started to develop a stitch. But I kept on telling myself to go on... (again thanks to the Podcast!)

Somewhere near the 35km mark, my right ankle started hurting like mad... I was really worried that it would give way as I had never ran more than a 22kms before. The sensation in the toes were also getting worse. This was where I slowed down my pace to about slightly over 5 minutes per km.

I downed another Powergel at 36km... they were running out of sports drink... so I had to take water to wash down the gel.

I laboured on until the 42km mark and was able to sprint the last 200m! The embarassing thing was there was a inflated arch before the finishing, which I thought was the finishing. So I sprinted into the arch... punching my fists in the air... the announcer called out my name and called me a 'true marathoner'... BUT I stopped after I passed the arch... and the crowd asked me to keep on running... I went past the finishing line at 3:22.10... hmm... maybe if I didn't stop, I could have done under 3:22... oh well...

Here are my splits...

5km 0:23.44 Lap 23:44
10km 0:47.03 Lap 23:19
15km 1:10.12 Lap 23:09
20km 1:33.49 Lap 23:37
21.1km 1:38.53
25km 1:57.11 Lap 23:22
30km 2:20.54 Lap 23:43
35km 2:45.35 Lap 24:41
40km 3:10.58 Lap 25:23
42.2km 3:22.10

I limped pretty much throughout the club rooms that day while waiting for the prize presentation. Helped myself to the bananas, water melons and sports drinks. There were also complimentary massages. It wasn't as painful as the one I had after my City of Perth triathlon.

I chatted with a few people. One was a BodyPump instructor, whose classes I used to attend. But she teaches in the evenings now. Another was a Malaysian who had done a few ironmans but would be attempting his first Langkawi Ironman next year.

Li-Ann came soon after... which was good as I was getting hungry. I had my second Powerbar and soon there were prize presentations. I was only hoping to get a draw prize... but I was delightfully surprised to be called up to collect 1st place in my 18-24 age group. So surprised... that I reacted rather awkwardly when collecting my prize. I didn't shake the presenter's hand... and I just took the medal from him... without letting him place it around my neck...

The full results are out. I'm placed 41 out of 321 runners overall. Rio actually came in at 4:09.20, positioned 193. Like I said, my topping of my age group was mostly due to sheer luck... the girl in the same age group clocked more than 20 minutes faster than I did! But I did come in before the 4th female overall...

Point to ponder... not sure whether I adopted the right strategy by starting at a pace faster than my targeted pace. But I was overtaking a lot of people on the way back... so I supposed relatively I was quite consistent and wasn't burning out.

That's it for my maiden marathon. You can bet that I pretty much limped throughout the whole of Melbourne for the first few days too... but my legs are getting better. I initially wanted to run tomorrow but I'm a bit tired from the trip. Would start on Wednesday...

Getting ready...



Prizes...

Blacktoes...

13 comments:

galnexdor said...

ahah i didnt know ur toe became so black...

owell...good job anyway...and glad the gels worked for u...=)

now post about melbourne already!

-kev- said...

Wait lah... be patient... got over 150 photos to upload... got CA assignment due this Sunday also.

bola2api said...

good job lah you! first prize summore!

-kev- said...

Thank you, thank you! You doing PD this weekend? All the best ya...

bola2api said...

no lah. am by-passing PD and that UM duathlon the wk after.

-kev- said...

UM duathlon? Sounds like something my sister would be interested... know where we can find details?

Stupe said...

crazy bugger...1:38 for 21km and sub 3:30 for full marathon...brader, i'm still struggling at 3:29 at 30km la!

well done mutant!

Stupe said...

UM marathon, i've registered!

29th July 2007.

registration is on 28th July at UM's 5th college. it's a 5km-20km-5km course, i suspect over the UM daunting hills!

Karen, if you are reading this...you now have the info...so, no excuse to miss it!

by the way, entrance fee is RM20 PLUS carbo loading dinner (which i suspect food is from UM's 5th college....)

-kev- said...

Hahhah Stupe... I'm quite amazed with my run also lah... but I think weather here makes it easier to make good times too... maybe if I race in Malaysia, different story already. Okay, I'll let Karen know about the UM duathlon details.

galnexdor said...

stupe: thanks...is that a challenge i sniff? =)

seela kor...now i'm Kevin-the-sub-3:30-marathoner's sister...i want u to go back being Karen-the-powerbar-girl's brother! =p

-kev- said...

Wah this got to be some record this post is setting for the most comments... Haiya, sis let me stand out in the glamour once in a while cannot ah... you already hang out with superstars so often... QUICK! Go find out about the UM duathlon! Else you would regret it!

lichoong said...

here are some tips for the black toes

http://www.jeffgalloway.com/training/injury_archives/black_toe.html

-kev- said...

Thanks, Li Choong! You becoming a marathon enthusiast too? The toes don't hurt actually... just a bit 'geli' looking.