Two minutes, and twenty four seconds. That’s how much time I missed my marathon goal time of sub-four hours by. In all fairness I was trying to cut 44 minutes off my previous marathon PR, but it should have been completely doable. I am pretty psyched that I ran so much faster of a marathon than my last marathon, but the fact that I failed to beat four hours, means I’m going to have to run another marathon. Darn this running addiction.
Overall, the Portland Marathon this year was a much more enjoyable experience than it was last year. The weather was mostly dry with mild temperatures, perfect for running. My strategy for running the marathon was just to come out as fast as I could maintain and then constantly adjust my speed based on how I was feeling, and constantly asking myself if I could run a bit faster. Other than noting the pacers, I really didn't use them at all, I just tried to keep as fast of a pace as I could maintain. My time at the half way point was 1:56:46, which would make it my 3rd fastest half marathon time! I did walk a bit on the climb up to the St John’s bridge. After the St John’s bridge I was dragging a bit, especially though miles 20 and 21 but then I really picked up the pace during the long hill leading down to the Broadway Bridge driven in part by the thought that around mile 23 there would be the beer aid station! After the Broadway Bridge my quads were really hurting, they almost felt like they were cramping. Between the leg pain and exhaustion of having just run 24 miles faster than I had ever run that distance before, I just couldn’t bring myself to push any harder and so I finished pretty slow.
So now nearly a week after the marathon, I’m feeling good enough to take a short run. I do need to get back into training since I have the Salty’s Half Marathon in a few weeks, followed by the Seattle Half Marathon a month after that. Right now I’m thinking about waiting until the packet pickup on the day before the marathon, and if the forecast is for dry weather on the day of the marathon I might just upgrade to the full Seattle Marathon. Other than that I have no other races planned for 2011, with the exception of participating as much as possible as my 8 year old daughter works on completing the Seattle Kids Marathon. However, for 2012 I would really like to run the Chicago Marathon!