Saturday, April 26, 2008

Laughing Out Loud Marathon

LOL Marathon Pictures

Originally when I signed up for this LOL Marathon I had planned to possible run, bike, and blade. I was so busy last week I never had time to figure out the logistics of doing that. Last night I wasn't sure what I was going to do. I decided to go run 12 miles with the Lunatics and see how I felt. The options for the run were 5K, 10K, half marathon, and marathon. You could use any kind of human powered transportation to finish.

Hugh volunteered and we arrived about 8 am. We sat in the car and were able to get a wireless signal to check on the 2 Dans running the half and full in Nashville. They were at the 6 miles and had both picked up the pace from their first 3 miles. Felt good to know their race was off too a great start.

I picked up my packet and about 8:40 went to the car to get my bottles ready. The plan was to run and see how far I could get. I figured this would be good training for the Berryman 50 mile since I was planning on taking this much slower than Boston. If I felt fine, I would go all the way. I wore my fuel belt with G2 and carried a my Nathan bottle with water. I took a variety of gels (2 Accels, 2 Hammers, and 1 Power Shot Blocks) so I could use up some that I no longer use.

Lisa and Jeff wells were planning to take turns biking and running the course as a team. There were about 50 participants with many in costume. Jeff ran first and I stayed with him and Lisa rode along with us. The run started in Flat Branch Park and we followed the MKT to Twin Lakes. We made a pit stop. So far the course was flat and then we had to run up the monster hill on Chapel Hill towards Fairview. We ran through Fairview Park on a trail and then on the grass around the soccer fields. There was a bonus loop you could take off the soccer fields but we opted not to add any extra miles.

Next the course moved back onto the roads. Lisa ran with me starting at Rollins and Stadium. A lot of the course went on Rollins road which has some nice hills. Off College park there was a shortcut that was available, but we proceeded on course through some other streets and then back to Rollins Road where we connected again with the MKT trail. We took the MU Rec Trail and then the trail to the park off Old 63 where we took another pit stop and Jeff resumed running.

I didn't realize we were going to be running up the hill on Old 63 towards Bearfield that we normally run down. Throughout the run we ended up walking and stopping very little. My GPS battery died right after the start, but seemed like we were keeping a comfortable 10 min pace which felt just right to me.

We continued generally to the west and at the food sure smelled good when we were across the road from Arris Pizza. I took gels every so often, but wasn't sticking to a regular schedule. There were a few water stops, plus Mike Denehy would find people on the course and bring water and gels. Also, I felt like the course was well-marked. Mike and Jim Linville spent the night from 9 pm - 4 am marking the course. I guess they didn't sleep.

The next part of the course headed north on Forum. I had called both Dan's earlier to hear about their race but they weren't with their phones. On Forum Dan S called to tell me about their races. With the traffic it was a little difficult to hear at first, but eventually I could hear. Dan S. had a big PR and qualified for Boston at 3:09:30 and Dan H. ran his half in 1:42:31. They both exceeded their goals dealing with the less than ideal weather conditions.

At Katy Place apartments we went down the treacherous hill that connects to the MKT. We got back on the MU rec trail and then headed towards the tunnel on Stadium, down Maryland and to the finish. I was still feeling good at the end and I think we ran a really consistent pace. It was nice having Jeff and Lisa to run with and this was a fun marathon and long run.

The only other person to run the entire marathon was Steve Kullman. We waited about an hour for him to finish and then went off to Roly Poly for some Roly Burgers.

Considering I ran 38 miles today, I'm feeling pretty good and now you all know that I'm certifiably nuts!
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