So trying to get to the floor to put my fleece back on and wrap my tinfoil blanket around my legs was not the easiest thing in the world. Although easier than in previous marathons. Once I had accomplished this task we, slowly, walked back to the car and talked over the mornings events.
When we got back to the hotel there were about 15 people waiting for a bus outside and when they saw me wrapped in tin-foil with my medal they started clapping and cheering, which was great! Next thing on the list was a nice long hot shower to warm up and then a stroll into Downtown Disney for sausage and chips which were fantastic with a hot cup of tea!
The following couple of days consisted of me getting stiffer and stiffer, especially in the quads. I could sit, walk, go up and down stairs OK, it was just the transitions between the different states that were the problem. I tried to see if I could run on the Monday, even just a couple of yards, it was like somebody had removed that part of my brain, I couldn’t remember how to make my legs go in the right positions to run. It was a really weird feeling. I have recovered quicker than any of my other marathons though and will be off out for my first recovery run tonight, just a couple of miles to get me going.
If somebody had told me when I first signed up I could have a 3hr48m time and finish in the top 1300 out of 17,000 I would have bitten your arm off, even if I had been offered it before the start, standing in the freezing cold I would probably have taken it. However, having been out there and run, I am not sure I did the best I could have done. The weather did contribute to how I slowed once my quads got too cold, they are still quite stiff now, even though the rest of my body has recovered. I really enjoyed the whole experience, but I think I could have done better.
I am pretty certain that if the weather had co-operated and even been just 10 degrees warmer I would have been 10 minutes quicker, it was just too much of a temperature change in 24 hours. From doing 90%+ of my training in 80 degree and hotter weather to then running the race in sub 30 degrees was just too much.
Part of the reason I think I am not that impressed is because I only did what I thought I would, if that makes any sense, I was hoping to exceed my expectations like I did in the Triathlon. All my training here indicated I could do a 3hr55 time in the heat in Cayman, so to only go 7 mins quicker wasn’t good enough as far as my high standards go. I had trained at 8:49 pace and the official clock showed me at 8:43, in the cooler weather and with the adrenaline pumping I expected a bit more. Especially when at half-way I was rolling along at 8:15-8:25. I know I will slow down towards the end of the race, but I just didn’t quite get it right.
Fuelling was also something I didn’t get perfectly, I should have thought with the nervous energy I was going to expend and the time before the start I would need more food, and I will remember that for next year.
That’s right, Exactly as I did last year, with 51 weeks to go I have signed up again. This time though the challenge will be harder, I am going to do the Goofy Race and a Half. This is were you get to do the Half-Marathon on the Saturday and then come back on the Sunday Morning for the full 26.2 miles. So you will cover 39.3 over the weekend. The real challenge though is to do a decent time in both. I am not certain about the half yet, as I haven’t run any this year and my legs are more attuned to the longer distance, but I want to beat 4hr in the full again, and if the weather is better maybe even beat this years time in the process! So at the moment I am going to set my goals as <1hr45min for the half and <4hr for the full.
So in addition to that, we are offering an open invitation to any of our friends or family who want to meet up for about a week in January next year, you don’t have to run, but if you want to then we won’t complain. Spud will obviously be there in all his glory too. So let us know if anyone wants to catch up.