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1478 Views 2 Replies Latest reply: Feb 21, 2010 6:46 PM by PersianP
Stevemustangred Legend 681 posts since
Oct 10, 2007
Currently Being Moderated

Feb 21, 2010 7:36 PM

RR Austin Marathon or Breakin' the Rules

Ran Austin this past weekend.  Conditions were perfect: 40s, sunny, slight breeze.  The course was improved from last year in that a narrow section was eliminated.


They didn't have runner shirts this year.  Instead we received a back pack at the expo.  It is exactly like the backpack we received a few years ago when Motorola still sponsored the race.   It is a very nice one and should hold up well.  I used my other backpack all over the world.  I broke one of the straps last spring in Chile when I fell off a horse.  The timing for a new one was perfect.


We met with the Athlete's Honey Milk folks at the expo.  They are sort of sponsoring us.  They gave us nice race shirts to wear and we tasted samples of new flavors: coffee, chocolate, vanilla and acai/pomegranate.


My pre-race plan was to run a steady 9 minute pace throughout.


Oh yeah about breaking rules.  I bought some Newton running shoes at the expo.  I have looked at these for a while and have wanted to try them.  I usually wear ASICS but a little "feature" on my Gel Cumulus' two weeks ago in Waco tore the heck out of my achilles tendons so I am considering a change.  I found a pair of Newtons that fit and they gave me a 10% discount so I picked them up.  Newtons are supposed to train you to land on the forefoot rather than heel striking.  With my big feet that could help reduce energy expenditure by improving my toe off.  I was so happy to have a new pair of shoes that I decided to wear them in the marathon without ever having run in them before.  The shoes definitely feel different.  I also wanted to experiment and see what would happen to me.


Another thing was that we both received low bib numbers.  This allowed us access to the front corral.  It was nice not being pushed and shoved.  It meant that I broke my rule about starting close to my expected pace and capability.  Of course I started the race much faster than planned.  Usually I try to run fast in the first half and hang on until the end.  Sunday was no different.  My first two miles, up hill were 8:15 each, then 8:08, and as we started downhill 7:46, 7:35, 8:32, 8:09, 8:24, and then the Exposition Hills hit me and I started churning out greater than 9 minute miles.  It might have been the shoes because as late race pain indicated, I was really using my calves. 2 nights BEFORE the marathon I woke up with a horrible Charlie Horse on my right calf that caused an annoying muscle pull.  This still hurt at the start so I wore a compression sleeve on that calf.  But as the race wore on both calves seemed to have equal amounts of pain.


My half time was 1:53 and my finish time was 4:11:07.  Two weeks ago in Waco I ran a 4:11:06.  I had only run once (12 miles) between the two races to let the tendon heal.


My calves and leg muscles hurt a lot following Sunday's race and for 2 days after.  That was probably from the shoes.  If I had stuck with my original plans and wore my normal shoes I might have run sub 4, but it's hard to tell given my lack of normal running.  I certainly wouldn't have hurt at all.  If I had run a more sane pace at the beginning then I would have probably run a sub 4 regardless of the shoes.  I feel fine now.


The experiment was a success.  I didn't injure anything that isn't already injured.


The only major problem with the race was that they didn't have energy drink until mile 10 and then it was only at every other aid station.  I don't know why they did that, but it wasn't good for anyone.  We received a finishers shirt and a nice medal.  Parvaneh and I also received an additional medal for completing the 3 Marathons of Texas:  Dallas, Houston and Austin.  This is the 5th year in a row that we've achieved recognition for it.


Next race:  Fort Worth Cow Town Marathon, February 27.

Lies Spectators tell Marathoners:   1) Last Hill!    2) Almost there!  3) You look great!

  • Immer treu We're Not Worthy 5,202 posts since
    Jan 23, 2008
    Currently Being Moderated
    1. Feb 20, 2010 7:35 AM (in response to Stevemustangred)
    Re: RR Austin Marathon or Breakin' the Rules

    Sounds as though you both persevered through a tough day in several ways.  The perils of "better" shoes rise again.  Delaying the availability of energy drinks until late in the run is one of those physiologically stupid things that seems to raise its ugly head on race courses several times a year now.  Maybe there should be a "course certification" for race organizations and not just for distance.  Good luck next weekend!

  • PersianP Legend 468 posts since
    Oct 14, 2008
    Currently Being Moderated
    2. Feb 21, 2010 6:46 PM (in response to Immer treu)
    Re: RR Austin Marathon or Breakin' the Rules

    I agree with you Immer, they are stingy charging runners a 100 dollars a race and not even providing the minimum for a good size race!

    Not having any power drinks affected me badly on a time I needed the most! This was the worse Austin marathon I have ran in last 10 years, I was stopping every 2 miles to use the facilities!

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