Monday, December 8, 2008

Reflections on a Cool Day in Memphis
Some special people having fun!
I awoke at 6:00am feeling good and excited about running, outside it was a cold 31 degrees but dry with light winds. Whatever the weather, I was ready to run. Yesterday’s visit to St Jude’s hospital was both inspirational and humbling at the same time. Seeing the world class facility and meeting some of the patients was awesome, it put the challenge of running 26.2 miles into perspective.

My adopted Team “ESA” did a fantastic job and raised over $32,000, with your help my contribution was $810, thank you to all who supported me in this effort.

The race was a 2 loop course, fairly hilly with two long stretches of rolling hills, nothing crippling but solid steady climbs, just like I see every day in St Louis. I was joined at the start by 8,000 runners in the half and full marathon, all starting together. I started in corral 2 behind the elite runners; it was a strange feeling but a proud moment for me to be legitimately that far forward in the line up. From the off I stuck to the 3:00:00 pace guy who ran the first mile in 6:15! Before I and others backed off a little, the whole group was a little p****d at the pace of the first mile, but we settled into a good rhythm soon after. My split at the 10K mark was: 41:13 @ 6:37 min pace per mile, I was feeling relaxed and enjoying the race, just trying to switch off and cruise. At the half way split: I rolled a time of 1:27:45 @ 6:41 min pace per mile, which is a personal best for me by 3 minutes. I was still feeling relaxed, but it was a little tough to turn away from the finish area and begin loop 2 and start to climb for the next 6 miles! The 20 mile split was: 2:18:17 @ 6:54 min pace per mile, I was happy to be in sight of my target time but beginning to labor. I had not been taking on fluids, just can’t seem to drink on the run, or swallow without choking. Over the last six miles of the race I got a side stitch, ran it off, then my right foot was hurting, blisters burned hot with every stride, my breathing was still fine but my energy was sapping away by the mile.

I was going down, I just kept using my arms and tried to relax, I did stop to drink at the last 3 aid stations, I don't know if this helped or not. My mind was angry and my body was now hurting badly, not as bad as Go STL but I knew then that my 3:00:00 time goal had gone, so I just focused on getting home as fast as possible without serious injury. On investigation, I learned that I was leading in my Grand Masters category at all 3 splits!! I was even 1:30 min in front at mile 20 and to lose by 6 min was disappointing. I was not aware of my position at any time in the race. The Grand Master category winner ran a perfect race, half marathon split in 1:31:00 and finish in 3:01:57, well done to him. My overall feelings are: I am very happy with my time, a personal best by 58 minutes! I learned more about racing and I need to review my training (I need to do longer long runs and tighter focused marathon preparation, the Lewis and Clark break was not the best preparation). I was really happy with my ability to cruise at @ 6:45 min pace.

My result: 89th overall male, 2nd Grand Master (50 and over) in a time of 3:07:29. The next things to do on my list are: Sign up for Boston, build a new training plan and break through that 3:00:00 barrier next time.

I have come a long way in a year of running after a 35 year break, the journey has been exhilarating and I feel happy to have had the opportunity to help others less fortunate than me at the same time as having fun.

Thanks for all your support and encouragement, I hope I did your faith in me justice.


David Carruthers 7th December 2008

2 comments:

Gallivanter said...

Wow...you have been keeping fit. Myself on the other hand have been steadily expanding horizontally. LOL!

Hope all is well with you! :-)

Sandracer said...

quote: Mr. Carruthers agreed to not appeal provided that the sentence doesn't exceed 33 months, which is under the terms of the agreement, as well as to not engage in United States-facing offshore gambling businesses during the time of supervised release or thereafter.

comment: Judging by the way you've taken on the running, I doubt you'll not be successful in your next endeavour when this whole American thing is over and done with.

Cheers, be well.