I came, I Saw, I conquered….The Portland Marathon Part 2

Where did we leave off? Oh yes, at the start line! So Maggie lined up with the 4 Hour group and I stayed with her there knowing that I would fall back to the 4:10 or 4:20 group. It was nice and brisk in the morning so we both wore throw away long sleeves. We hugged and wished each other good luck, and just like that we were off!

the view 2So what made this race less successful than I hoped? First of all, I had a lot of work stress the week before the race. I couldn’t sleep and I had dropped 3 pounds in the matter of one week. I arrived in Portland feeling weak and stressed. I was determined to focus on having fun and running this race then I would let my mind go back to other issues at hand as soon as it was over. I had to change my travel plans at the last minute and fly to California from Portland the day after my race, but more on that in another post. I have some exciting changes coming soon!

the viewSecondly, this course was MUCH hillier than I expected. Lots of uphill and lots of downhill which is actually worse when you have little control over your muscles at mile 22. With all the changes in elevation I started to get a blister at mile 4. Yeah something little at mile 4 can turn into something huge by mile 26 and it did. I stopped at mile 5 to rub it down with Nivea chapstick, which helped some but this continued to bother me every step of the rest of the race. Despite the less than flat course the views were amazing. All photo credit in this post goes to Maggie. I didn’t take any pictures during the race.

maggieI was feeling great other than my pesky blister, and I was killing it in the first half. I was running with the 4:10 pace group and I was just certain that I would hit that time. Something happened at mile 14 and I hit a major wall like I have never done before. My energy dropped almost instantly and I spent the rest of the race trying to refuel. I had started my gummies at mile 4. I was alternating the power drinks with water. I was doing everything right, but I got to a point where I could not stand the thought of eating another gummy. Maggie was smart and took a snickers to eat at mile 15 and she said it was a lifesaver. There was a giant hill at mile 16 leading up to this bridge that the extra fuel would have come in handy for. One of the major things I have to work on in training and racing is fueling.

the bridgeMy blister became a very painful problem at mile 20 so the last 6 miles were ran in complete pain in my left foot. These last 6 miles were ultimately what cost me my 4:20 marathon. I slowed down significantly during this time and even walked a brief time at miles 23, less than a quarter mile. Despite this race not being what I hoped it would be, I ran freaking 26.2 miles and I did it faster than last time on a much harder course, so I have nothing to be ashamed of even if it didn’t feel as good as last year!

After I crossed the finish line I drank 2 cartons of chocolate milk, and hit the candy table for a handful of baby butterfingers. I also ate a bag of chips. Random assortment I know. Maggie and I made our way back to the hotel where she ordered a burger and fries from room service. I got a order of fries to hold me over while I ordered another gluten free pizza. It was that good the night before I had to have another.  Because of the race it took them an hour and half to get it to me. Thank goodness for the fries in the meantime.

It took me a lot longer to get back to normal than Maggie and she headed out to explore without me. Once I felt like a human again and the food I ate had kicked in, I got ready and met up with her to explore a new neighborhood.

cute neighborhoodDonuts are completely acceptable after 26.2. Too bad they didn’t have gluten free!

donutsWe walked around and did a little shopping before meeting up with a friend of hers for a few beers. I left the young kids to play without me, while I headed back to the hotel via Uber to get packed up and ready for an early flight.

Cheers, SS

Tell me about the last hard race you had?

Speak Your Mind


CommentLuv badge