PDA

View Full Version : Race Report: French Lick/West Baden, IN, Half-Marathon



Patrick
04-23-2006, 05:46 PM
Pedal-oners,

Reporting in, reviewing my race from this morning.

Allow me to preface this race recap by saying that I in no way participated in any specificity training- i.e., I never run. All I have done to prepare is my hours of cycling and lifting weights. As I said in, "My First Official Swim," the running is the upswing, but the last two weekends (today:half-marathon and last saturday: Ten Miler) have been about the only running I've done.

Anyway. Alarm goes off at 5:00am in the musty Sims room at the, "Lane's Motel," which marketed itself as boasting, "TV & Pool." The beds were pretty miserable; I went to bed at 10:30pm to, you know, get a good night's rest, and didn't fall asleep till 2. AM. I typically don't have a problem sleeping on hard beds, but I had to share a double with mumsy as my dad monopolized the other double bed (aren't married couples supposed to sleep together? I thought so too...). Snoring, cold A.C. vs. VERY HOT blankets, it was just a very long night.

Continuing on. I get up, have a shower, shave, and get dressed, adorning my, "8" racing bib. My friend and client, Paige, who we were really there for, got number, "1." I was jealous, but she deserved it. Here's her story in a nutshell: she has lost 45lbs. since Sept. from her and I working together and putting her on a training program, she's adopted a love for fitness, and I recommended she do this as a milestone and commitment to the rest of her life. I was so proud of her :D

But I digress, per usual. I have breakfast (two slices of pumpernickel bread with peanut butter on them and an XL banana), same thing as always. I read an article in Runner's World that you should never experiment with food you don't normally eat before your race, so just eat what you always eat. So I did, and I was content, peanut butter being my favorite food, and all.

Skipping over some family unpleasantries, we start the race. The first three miles, I felt great. It was cold out- 50 degrees just as the sun began to rise at 7am when the race started. Well, the outer edge of my left foot hadn't been feeling too hot ever since last saturday, when I up and ran the, "Papa John's 10 Miler" here in Louisville, and it began to flare up about 2 miles in. The pain actually got really bad for about 20 seconds, and I wondered if I'd have to stop. What happens? Pain subsides to barely a twinge of discomfort. God moment # 1. At the same time I began to feel the blister that I had quasi-developed last Saturday; I felt it rubbing again. No worries, though: blisters are small potatoes to me.

So I proceed on at a steady heart rate of 167 (82% MHR), which was right around my target for the race. Four miles in I passed the second aid station, took two big sips and dumped the rest over my head as I always do, and continue on. The song changes on my iPod to, "Blood Rave Techno" from Blade, and suddenly I realized that I had forgotten to defecate before the race today. And I hadn't the night before, either. All things being told, I hadn't crapped since yesterday morning: 25 hours ago at this time. :eek:

Mile 5 was not only my hardest mile in the race, but the hardest mile I've ever had to run. Mile 5 was completely flat along a highway that wound around out in the country. No houses. No gas stations, no McDonald's. Nothing. And that meant no bathrooms. By the start of mile 5 I had to start clenching a little. Trying to rationalize against excreting upon myself, I considered the fact that Mile 4 had an aid station, which meant that 6 would too, and for whatever reason I knew that God would provide for me a porta-potty. "Or at least he damn well better," I said to myself.

So I keep checking the GPS every 5 seconds, knowing that mile 6 was very close. So when I reach the 6 Mile marker, which was painted on the road, nothing. No aid station. No porta-potty. Just flat, empty woods. I felt doomed to some sort of a bush or something with no way of cleaning myself. I couldn't even get to a line of trees from here- creeks ran along either side of the road. And these were pretty big, so I figured I'd rather not ford through 3 ft of water just in the name of pooping on myself.

But what appears in the distance? Is it a phone booth, or a porta-potty? Either way, I thoroughly intended to relieve myself inside. The aid station was nearby, and so I had to make it another 3/10 of a mile to the porta-potty. Life-saver, buddy. Life saver. I always take 2 Immodium A.D. before any long runs (as rarely as I do them, I know they'll send my bowels into an uproar), and it's a good thing I did. Kept everything solid, which I was very glad about.

Four minutes later, I came out and proceeded on. The guy at the aid station gave me a weird look like, "You went in there four minutes ago...". I figured he'd prefer I err on the side of sparing him the details, so I just said, "water," and went on my way.

I picked up my stride, and I could tell my legs had stiffened considerably since I had a sit. But I felt much better! MUCH BETTER. My bowels literally hurt, as they do now- not like shooting pain, more of a, having-been-sloshed-around-for-6 & 1/2 miles-full-of-crap pain. My shorts were sliding off of me, so I know that I had shed some baggage. I tightened up the waist band, and soldiered on.

Now that the gory details have been explained in full, I can proceed. The race was fairly uneventful from here. The course was all kinds of messed up; they had thought that we would be running through the same intersection four times, but we weren't. I got lucky and never veered off course :D- One guy lost first place because of it all- he ended up running himself a 15 mile half-marathon, according to his GPS.:(

The course was gorgeous. Winding through the country, I had thoroughly expected the course to be hillier than hell, but it was very flat. Apparently they saved all the hills for the full marathon, which was fine with me.

I finished in a time of 2:18:35, which was 8 minutes off my goal. I always have two goals for a race: a dream goal and a goal goal. Dream goal was sub 2-hr, but I knew that wasn't going to happen. Goal goal was under 2:10, but I got close. Damn bowels slowed me down... yeah, that's it!

Anyway, got my finisher's medal and ended up winning my age group (Male 14-18; uncontested :rolleyes: ). My friend Paige soldiered her way to 2nd place in her age group after a truly grueling and valiant 3:05, and her mom, who just up and registered to walk it yesterday, won overall walker! I was very impressed.

So I got my medal, my trophy. This is the first time in my life I've ever gotten a trophy. For anything. Athletic, anyway. And I have realized that I have finally reached the designation entitled thereto: "athlete."

Feeling great everywhere except for every muscle in my body,

Patrick

JFK
04-23-2006, 05:56 PM
So I got my medal, my trophy. This is the first time in my life I've ever gotten a trophy. For anything. Athletic, anyway. And I have realized that I have finally reached the designation entitled thereto: "athlete."


And for this I am very, very proud of you! Way to go! :D

I think that this is a terrific accomplishment for you. I am so pleased to be able to follow your adventure into athletics, if not porta potties. ;)

alexkaboom
04-23-2006, 06:01 PM
Way to go Patrick! Great job!

Alex

JoyofSpin
04-23-2006, 06:09 PM
Patrick - what a story! So very proud of you. I hope (know) there'll be more trophies coming your way. Just a little advice - try to poop before the race next time - LOL - Joy

rick316
04-23-2006, 06:10 PM
Great work,good time.:)

Patrick
04-23-2006, 06:14 PM
Patrick - what a story! So very proud of you. I hope (know) there'll be more trophies coming your way. Just a little advice - try to poop before the race next time - LOL - Joy

It's a necessity I'll remember not to forget. :)

JFK
04-23-2006, 06:19 PM
Some folks take a few prunes or dried apricots at bedtime the night before. Experiment during training, not just before your next event. :)

Patrick
04-23-2006, 06:22 PM
Some folks take a few prunes or dried apricots at bedtime the night before. Experiment during training, not just before your next event. :)

Why in the world would you do that?! I'm all about avoiding the high-fiber in the 24 hours prior!

Patrick

raptor
04-23-2006, 10:17 PM
As one who's participated in my (small) share of day-long competitions, endurance and other, I can tell you that there are plenty of uncomfortable experiences waiting for you in your athletic career. Dehydration, nagging injury, overtraining, stomach illness, other illness, you'll have to run the list.

Enjoy the journey! :)

Lynn

kszspin
04-23-2006, 11:07 PM
Wow! You make an old lady proud :D .
Do you have pics for us???

JFK
04-24-2006, 08:10 AM
As one who's participated in my (small) share of day-long competitions, endurance and other, I can tell you that there are plenty of uncomfortable experiences waiting for you in your athletic career. Dehydration, nagging injury, overtraining, stomach illness, other illness, you'll have to run the list.

Enjoy the journey! :)

Lynn

Lynn, stop, you'll spoil the fun of him discovering it himself!

Seriously, Patrick, it's true you will discover some of the adventures that Lynn mentioned, and probably others. Do try to avoid heat stroke and hyponatremia (over-hydration) though, would you please? I have just finished writing up a heat stroke case study (fatal) and I'm editing a number of other fatal case studies.

Just remember that no one race is everything. If you have to drop back or out, it's okay. Live to run/ride/swim another day. :)

Sorry to inject such a down note here, but making wise choices helps keep athletes around for the next event. And we want you around! :D

ChocolatePizzaRedWine
04-24-2006, 10:26 AM
Great job Patrick!


Do try to avoid heat stroke and hyponatremia (over-hydration) though, would you please?

I knew about heat stroke, but had to look up hyponatremia. Thanks for the heads-up!

-t

britspin
04-24-2006, 10:52 AM
Waaaaaaaaaaay too much detail buddy.

Patrick
04-24-2006, 08:14 PM
Photos as requested.

MattF
04-24-2006, 09:49 PM
Wow Patrick, I am very happy for you. It's amazing to see where you've come and to read your story. I still envy you in the sense of your courage to take it to the next level :) You've been a huge inspiration for me to keep going... and my goodness, you look NOTHING like a 17 year old. :D

Patrick
04-24-2006, 09:51 PM
Wow Patrick, I am very happy for you. It's amazing to see where you've come and to read your story. I still envy you in the sense of your courage to take it to the next level :) You've been a huge inspiration for me to keep going... and my goodness, you look NOTHING like a 17 year old. :D

Thanks, Matt. And I accidentally shut my computer off, that's why I signed off so abruptly. What happens when I get back on? You've signed off. Bum.

Patrick

raptor
04-25-2006, 12:08 AM
Just remember that no one race is everything. If you have to drop back or out, it's okay. Live to run/ride/swim another day. :)

Excellent advice. The most important thing is being able to come back and do it tomorrow. Or the next day, if you went extra hard. Endurance competition involves learning which of your body's signals indicate mere suffering, and which are dire warnings of a problem. Testing your limits usually involves exceeding them sometimes. If you're lucky, you'll never go too far over the line, and if you do, it's with trained medical staff nearby!

I've been lucky a couple times.

Lynn

Patrick
04-25-2006, 03:19 PM
Excellent advice. The most important thing is being able to come back and do it tomorrow. Or the next day, if you went extra hard. Endurance competition involves learning which of your body's signals indicate mere suffering, and which are dire warnings of a problem. Testing your limits usually involves exceeding them sometimes. If you're lucky, you'll never go too far over the line, and if you do, it's with trained medical staff nearby!

I've been lucky a couple times.

Lynn

Speaking of knowing when to just step away, obviously I didn't. I didn't listen to the mild pain in my left foot all last week, and now I've earned me a strained ligament in my ankle- prescribed 14 days minimal weight-bearing. No running till 7 days after the pain is totally gone. And this is my first week of triathlon training. Ba humbug, is all I have to say. And it isn't even Christmas!

Glad I can still ride a bike and (attempt to) swim,

Patrick

raptor
04-25-2006, 09:36 PM
Wait till you pull a hamstring. (Carlos Boozer of the Utah Jazz missed the end of last season and most of this season with a pulled hamstring.) I'm still learning about my body, still "breaking" things here and there. By the time I die, I should have it all pretty well figured out. :)

Take care of that ligament, and good luck in your next race!

Lynn

britspin
04-26-2006, 11:00 AM
You are indeed in the right sport..no running OK...still got swimming, still got cycling..heal fast & well.