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Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Rock n Roll Arizona Marathon Recap

This is my 2nd marathon in 2 weeks, 2nd this year and 58th

I have ran the RNRAZ since 2005 and every year I have improved my time from previous year. Below are my times for the past years.

2005 - 5:05.08
2006 - 4:43.57
2007 - 4:39.58
2008 - 4:17.55
2009 - 4:13.10

Although I would love to set another RNRAZ PR, my left achilles just wouldnt let me. I was still recovering from last week's race which I had to walk the last 8 miles. My achilles was still tight days prior to the RNRAZ, my goal was to able to walk the marathon even if I couldnt run, there is no way I would skip this marathon because if I did, then my 60th marathon would have to push back to Red Rock Canyon Marathon instead of RNR New Orlean. So I kept stretching it, icing it, heat it, elevate it, massaging it, you name it, I will try anything just to get it better for the race.


I was able to get to the Expo both on Friday and on Saturday, on Friday there weren't a lot of people so I was able to meet some celebrities such as Josh Cox, Deena Kastor, Dean Karnaze, Steve Scott and Ryan Hall. And the guy from The Biggest Loser Sione who lost hundreds of pounds on the show.
First time meeting Josh Cox, what a cool guy!!got to meet Deena again, she is trying to break the 10 miler record or something this sunday.The Badass Dean is in the house!!The guy from The Biggest Loser was there running for Team Chances.

On Saturday, after I picked up my friend Jessica from the airport, we headed to the expo, we were very surprised that we bumped into a few Maniacs and Fanatics, including MM#1, Suzanne, Action Jackson and Casey, whom I met at last week's Running from an Angel race, she is doing the half with her husband.

Beofore Jessica and I went to the Maniacs/50 Stater pasta dinner at Bucca Di Beppo in Scottsdale, I had to stop by another restaurant where my other friends were having a pasta dinner, I promised my friend I would stop by and take picture with them before I go.

The pasta dinner was a great turn out, we had around 25 Maniacs/50 State Club members showed up. We got to meet whole bunch of runners and shared stories, the best part of the dinner was that we got to stand up and introduce ourself to the crowd. Maniac #1 and #3 were also there, #2 was MIA.

After getting off the shuttle, Jessica and I hung out by the band not too far from the starting area, they had coffee, banana, Cyotmax and begal nearby. We kept bumping into a few familiar faces, especially those we just met the night before at the dinner party, we were finally able to meet up with Maniac #2, Chris. I also met up with Katsy, Eric, Casey and Nicci from last week's race and our dinner party on Friday night. We hung out there until it's time to check my bag 15 mins before the race start.

My achilles still feel a little stiff after the race started, my goal was to just take it slow and hope to finish the race without any injury, I just wanted to get thru this race and have a month to recover for my next race. Jessica ran with me for a mile before her calf started to cramped up, we pulled over to the side and stretched it out and started to run again. I decided to follow the 4:30 pace group cuz I think that would be a comfortable pace I could handle due to my tight achilles.

My 4:30 pacer Danielle was really entertaining, she talked to us every now and then and just kept the energy going, she made the miles went by really fast. I talked to her about the Marathon Maniacs club, which she doesnt know it existed, so I was glad to fit her in. I followed the group thru 19 miles, then she had to stop at the aid station, I moved on and hopefully she will catch up to me later on.I was running around under 10min/mile and I felt strong, I wasn't feel too tired, and I guess that why following a pace group and saving my energy for the second half of the race really helped. By around Mile 23, I caught up with my friend Eric and Katsy, I met Eric from last week's race and Katsy at our Friday night dinner. After we ran for a little bit, Katsy had to take a walking break, so I moved on and said I will see them at the beer garden. At Mile 24, I caught up with my friend whom I ran the Ragnar Relay with, he seems to be struggling but was able to ran with me for awhile before he had to stop. I kept running in a comfortable pace and told myself that if I kept running this pace, I could finish under 4:30, so I just take it slow and hang on till the end.

When I passed the Mile 26 marker, I knew I could finish under 4:30, so I just kept running and getting ready to finish, they were playing that song by Rob Thomas "Let's see How Far We've come" by the finish line, that's a great song, I was singing it while I crossed the finish line and finished in 4:27.12

Although I didnt improve my time from last year, I am just glad I was able to run on my sore achilles and finished the race without any serious damage. Now I have a month to recover until my next race.

Next Race........................ Pasadena Marathon 2-21-2010

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Running from an Angel Marathon

This is my 1st marathon of this year and 57th overall

I left my house at 2am in the morning and made a 4 hours drive to Boulder City, NV early Saturday morning. I arrived at the Lake Mead, NV a little after 6am, so I just missed to watch the 50 milers start, our marathon race starts at 8am. It was really cold in the morning, like in the 40's. I went to pick up my packet real quick and went back to my car and catch some last min sleep before the race starts.

Around 7:50am, race director Joyce made a quick annoucement about the course and everything, the course is an out and back course with many rolling hills, but the weather was perfect, not too cold and not too hot, compare this to Chicago Marathon and Las Vegas Marathon, this was perfect.

I started the race with a goal of finishing around 4:30, since I ran this race 2 years ago on my birthday with the time 4:51.55. I wanted to take it slow since my achilles tendon on my left foot was bothering me the past few days, but I was glad I was able to run on it without feeling too much pain, although I did felt the tightness while I was running, but it was manageable and I was able to run through it, at least for the first half of the race......................

After 15 miles, I felt my achilles tendon was starting to giving out on me, I could felt a sudden sharp pain right below my left calf, I had no choice but to start walking, and then after walking for a mile or two, I tried to start running again to see if the pain goes away, and it did!! But not for long, I was only able to run about a mile and then the pain came back again around mile 18, so I started to walk the rest of the race after that. It was kind of sucks watching other runners passed by me, but since this was a small event, there weren't a lot of runners on the course, sometimes I didnt even see any runner infront or behind me.

I tried a lot of positive thoughts to kept me moving, like trying to power walk and walk like Yolanda "The Walking Diva", trying to think I am running the Badwater 135 and I only have a few miles to walk till I finish, and I thought of those who walked thousands of miles across the US, so for me walking only 8 miles would be no big deal. I finally saw the finish line ahead of me, so I hopped as a horse as fast as I can and cross the finish line at 5:11.17. Not too shabby, consider only 41 mins after my goal time.

I hung out after the race for a few hours and waited for my other friends to finish their 50 miler, with Jeanette and Levi both finished under 10 hours, Jeanette being her 1st 50 miler, she actually won 1st place in her age group!! What a great accomplish for a rookie!! =-) We then waited for our other friend Jennifer, who finished just a little over 12 hours, afterward we all went to a sushi place and refueled.

Next Race........................... Rock N Roll Arizona, 1-17-2010