Distance Totals

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Newport 2010 Marathon Race Report

Official Postcard of the Newport Marathon

Back in February I signed up for the Newport Marathon, as a fallback plan in case my attempt to qualify for Boston at the LA marathon would not work. The LA marathon was a bittersweet experience, PR’ed by 30s (3:30:02) but the last 4 miles were painful due to cramping and I was far from my needed BQ time (3:20:59). So after 3 weeks of recovery I had about 8 weeks to train seriously for Newport. Since this was a little short (at least to my standard, I am not a maniac), I purchased a training plan from Mc Millan and trained with it instead of FIRST which I had used before. I followed the plan and flew to Portland the day before, drove to Newport. After a really bad night (I saw every hour of the night on the alarm clock), I “woke up” at 4:45, had breakfast, showered and walked to the start – only 0.5 mile from the hotel.
About 30 minutes before the start
Start at 7am, no chip, and here we go for the first 4 miles – sort of a rollercoaster of short rolling hills, nothing nasty but a little steep, and a ¼ mile segment on loose gravel road.

View from the area of the start
Once you are out of that initial segment, the race is on a flat undulating road bordering the Yaquina river. Very scenic and peaceful and no hills except the last mile. Not much spectators, but I don’t really need them (I actually hate having people yell in my face when I am suffering…). Some segments had a headwind, and the areas of the road exposed to the sun were a little too warmish for my taste, so the shaded areas were welcome. I had 4 GUs  with water, did not try the Heed which was offered since I did not want to try anything new.

I was “sort of” on pace for the BQ until mile 18, when I started to slow slightly but significantly, which kept me from BQing by 2 minutes. Despite this I was very happy with my run, because I felt strong all the way and did not hit the wall nor cramp. I had some small side stitches around miles 8, 16 and 24 but nothing bad. I was able to pick up the pace slightly on mile 25 and 26 compared to 21-24 (despite 26 being a moderate uphill incline) and ran the last 0.2 at 6:59 thanks to a generous downhill finish.

Finish Line (way after I finished...)
I was ecstatic at the end, despite not BQing, because that was my best marathon run in terms of consistency of pace and I felt in the driver seat from beginning to the end. With a little more training, a BQ is in the future ! Here are my splits:

Mile1: 7:43
Mile 2: 7:45
Mile 3: 7:34
Mile 4: 7:39
Mile 5: 7:51
Mile 6: 7:40
Mile 7: 7:41
Mile 8: 7:44
Mile 9: 7:44
Mile 10: 7:42
Mile 11: 7:41
Mile 12: 7:40
Mile 13: 7:40
Mile 14: 7:39
Mile 15: 7:46
Mile 16: 7:41
Mile 17: 7:42
Mile 18: 7:45
Mile 19: 7:46
Mile 20: 7:46
Mile 21: 7:53
Mile 22: 7:58
Mile 23: 7:53
Mile 24: 7:55
Mile 25: 7:49
Mile 26: 7:48
Mile 26.2: 6:59
Final: 3:23:06 – 7:44/mile
Around mile 10, still feeling strong

After the race I went back quickly to my hotel (thanks to a driver from Idaho who was waiting for his wife and gave me a ride back), showered, checked out and enjoyed hanging out at the Newport Harbor with a great lunch of salmon and pasta.
In the harbor, with my finisher T-shirt and medal

Newport Harbor
I also attended the awards ceremony, it was really cool. The older finisher was 81 years old !!
I really enjoyed Newport. It was such a refreshing race compared to a megamarathon like LA, and the people in town were all very nice. I hope to be back next year !

The course along the Yaquina river

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