Race Report 14 months late:
Similar to the Ottawa Beer Mile, a great suggestion came from Cupcake Girl on a Wednesday to run in a Saturday event 2.5 days later. In this case, the suggestion was to incorporate an already-scheduled long, moderately-paced 30K training run into a charity event. Because who doesn't want to run 127 laps around an indoor track?
Of course, I am a cheapskate and searched for value - why get a fountain drink for $1.89 when you can get the Giant Big Gulp that will cripple you for ten cents more? So I might as well run 181.5 laps at full speed for my entry fee.
So I was set but there was no opportunity for a taper. But a great training opportunity - heat has been my nemisis at times and with a goal race where heat of 18 degrees is expected, a tough test at the room temperature would help me with warm-weather pacing six weeks later. And potentially a great confidence boost (or killer) - with a bonk in a PW performance in my last marathon, a good result could give me confidence in an aggressive pace at the start line of my goal race.
An indoor marathon absolutely sounds like a ridiculous event but it was terrific. Great organizers, great volunteers, friendly, fun and positive participants, great facility. The marathon was 181.5 laps of a 232.49m track. The upside of such a course is aid stations every 232.49 metres and lots of friendly faces to chat with...again and again. The downside is warm climate for a marathon (16 to 20 degree room temperature) and lots of passing. There were 69 others on the track - some needed to be passed as many as 75 times, and with the track more curve than straightaway, that was a lot of distance run in excess of race requirements either to pass on the outside or to surge to minimize wasted distance.
Keeping in mind GPS aid was of no use indoors, I stepped in my time machine and pulled out a stopwatch. There was also a screen giving splits that was visible on laps where you crossed the timing mat with no other traffic:
My marathon PB is 72 seconds per 232.49m so I dialed it down to 74 seconds per lap from the start, to account for gym warmth and lack of taper. This pace was about right, and exactly where I finished on average. I did test PB pace for part of the second quarter but it chewed up my energy quickly in the (relative) heat and I abandoned that approach. During the event, it was difficult to tell where you stood versus other runners but based on the results, it appears I made the pass to take third place on the 162nd lap, around 3:20:00 into the race. As usual, I gave it everything I had left in the home stretch:
My third-best marathon result, 3:44:28, and a third place finish:
As I had hoped for, this was a great confidence builder, which was sorely needed after bonking and walking it in in my November marathon. So I won't need to be tentative in my February marathon if I get a cool day and want to try to PB as I was less than six minutes off my best time in this one.
Here was the news coverage of this one, thanks to West Grey Runner for this clip:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=pl ... Y3j47gBl_8
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- Double Bellybuster
- Bill Crothers
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