Tuesday, October 22, 2013

How NOT to Run a Marathon

For me, the Chicago marathon was mostly a failure. I went out too hard. Here are my mile by mile splits.
Chicago Marathon 2013 Splits

See what I mean?

Miles four, five and six are what ultimately killed me. 5:28, 5:21, 5:27. The crowds were huge, I was just 15-20 seconds behind the lead women, which made the situation worse because I was mentally basing my pace off of their pace and the men around me. I remember hitting 5 miles in 27:25, and hitting 6 miles in just under 33, both times thinking, "sub 5:30 pace... I should slow down" Now, for the record my watch was beeping a little before the mile markers, partly because I shortened the first mile by pressing the split button on my watch as I cross the mile line. Partly also because of not taking the exact tangents. In other words, I passed 20 miles at about 1:53:11 not, 1:52:33. So roughly 2s per mile difference between GPS and the pavement.

Interesting to see how my pace dropped over the miles. I mean around 18 miles running became harder, and I began running just over 6 minute pace. Then around 22 it got a lot harder, and I was doomed to run 6:50+ pace. Then at 23 I realized that I would not break 2:30, because I was not going to run 3.2 miles in under 18 minutes, and I was doomed to run 7:25+ pace. The last two miles were just ugly. I mean 8:20s pace. That's running on pure fat and protein. Who like carbohydrates? I like carbohydrates!

Simply put, you can't run a marathon on excitement. I was not in shape to have any business running 5:2X miles in a marathon, the oxygen and glycogen requirements were far too high for me to maintain that pace in a marathon, and I ran five sub 5:30 miles.

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