Sunday, June 5, 2011

San Diego Rock 'N' Roll Marathon

Endorphin Dude has a theme song!  How random is this?  There I was at mile 17 and there sat on a lawn chair this spunky ukelele strumming crooner.  He would come up with a very quick and creative impromptu anthem for every runner who ran by!  Of course, I had to stop to get a video clip of him.  This guy is truly amazing.  He came up with this song on the spot!

The other amazing thing about this theme song is that it almost didn't happen.  I'm not going to sugar coat this and I'm just going to be straight up blunt: I struggled in San Diego and I almost detoured off the full course and joined the halfers.  My sciatic nerve flared up at about mile 14, and I pretty much walked the second half with a bag of ice tucked in my compression pants.  Fatigue and exhaustion also played a huge role in my down fall in San Diego as well.  I have run many races over the past few years, so I have a lot of experience and pretty much know what to do to survive.  However, something happened to me in San Diego that has never ever happened on the course before: I fell asleep.  It's true!  Half way through the marathon, I felt so tired that I pulled over to a bench to stretch out my leg, and the next thing I knew, I fell asleep for six minutes, according to my Garmin!  I had never fallen asleep on the course ever before.  Fortunately, there was a liquor store near by, so I was able to quickly jump in and get a double expresso cappuccino canned drink.  The caffeine gave me that zing, but that pain in my back and leg kept me from running, and at the end of the day, it took me over eight and a half hours to cross that finish line.

BQ Baby!!! I led my 3:30 pace group to a 2:43 finish!!! Oh wait, does 3:30 mean I have to finish 26.2 miles in 3 hours and 30 minutes and not at 3:30pm? I finished at 2:43pm. The race started at 6:15am. Oh snap!

What kept me off that sag wagon was the fact that there were at least 100 people still behind me.  Team In Training also saved me, as I knew that the finish line would not close until the final TNT participant crossed.  There were a lot of people struggling behind me, so I knew I could drop my pace and still finish.  At about mile 22, I saw a 3:30 pace sign on the ground, and I had to pick it up.  It was one of the only things out there that kept me sane.  I felt like Tom Hanks in the film "The Castaway," because by mile 23, I was on this dreadful place called Fiesta Island and I had my version of his soccer ball "Wilson."  That sign kept me sane on that island because it garnered me a lot of laughs and looks of confusion.

The only other thing that kept me going was seeing all my Marathon Maniac friends along the course.  Sadly, though, when I got to the later miles, everyone had already finished, so I didn't get to see any people on Fiesta Island, which by now you've probably figured that it wasn't very festive!

There's Tyler Rich, the Teddy Bear Factory Doctor!
Me and Eli!  I hadn't seen this guy since Rock 'N' Roll Arizona.
Mad Dog!
Lyle Lyle Crocodile.
So Asian!
I always get a shot of energy when I see MG.  What class act.

This guy may look like a jester, but he's my hero.
Thank you Elizabeth Mckay and Mohan Dutt for waiting for me and running me in. It's so nice to see a familiar friendly face at the finish line.

At the end of the day, I got the job done.  This was an extremely difficult race for me.  It's amazing how defeated you can feel, but if you just keep telling yourself to never give it, the power of positive thinking will prevail.  I had to play mind games to get to that finish line, and I am extremely happy to have this hard earned medal hanging around my neck.  My life time marathon total is now up to 25.  Wow.

Titanium Score Board: 18 down, 34 to go!

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