Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Spring marathons

Weather forecast is coming around for the Country Music Marathon on Saturday. It's going to be in the 80's all this week and then break on Saturday. Temps forecasted to be a high of 69 degrees and scattered showers. Repeat of the last couple of years. Personally I prefer temps under 50 degrees and ideally in the 40's to "race" a marathon.

I've made the mistake of trying to race a marathon when the temperatures aren't in my ideal zone. The result is usually a slower than anticipated race. I sweat to much and don't keep up with the hydration. It's even happened in a half marathon.

But, hydration and nutrition, like temperatures affect everyone differently. It's only taken me 13 years to figure out the balance of nutrition and hydration that works the best for me during the marathon. I've had some serious bonks and bouts of dehydration (the picture tells the whole story) during races and even on training runs.

The Country Music Marathon has become an event. 30,000 runners wow. Over 90% will be running the half marathon. Sure, some will be racing but the majority are just out to be running. Same here, it's my chance at the "rock star" lifestyle as a pacer. Wish the best to everyone in their race.

Final thoughts before the race. It's crowded, if you don't get up front and you are wanting to race, change corrals at the expo. The first 2-3 miles are very crowded, don't waste energy dodging and weaving trying to get on pace. If the temperatures are above where you've been training, adjust your pace from the start.

I may try for another fall marathon. Spring marathons haven't been very kind to me. Perhaps a 50 miler over the summer or early fall. This running stuff is addictive, I've been at it now for right at 20 years.

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