Thursday, July 24, 2008

Deseret News Marathon Recap

A Runner's Ramblings: Volume 3; 10th Edition
198.9 miles raced in 2008
Race: Deseret news Marathon
Place: Salt Lake City, UT
Miles from home: 0 miles
Weather: Sunny and 70s

I have had my sights set on a new and big PR for a few months now. I will be the first to admit that my racing this month was not 100% conducive to getting a new and big PR but that’s life.

To be honest, I am a little disappointed right now. This recap may get bigger later but I don’t have it in me right now. You see, I did not set the new and big PR today. For whatever reason, around mile 11, my stomach turned against me for one of the first times ever. The power drink on the course made me almost throw up, so surprisingly so I actually said: “What the hell was that?”

This was disappointing as everything was going to plan until that point. And it was the first part of the marathon that was the most difficult. First were four miles of screaming downhill. Then miles 6 to 8 had a large uphill (at 6,000 feet of elevation, mind you). After that it was 5 miles or so of nice gentle downhill which I normally would love. However, after the near vomit issue I could not get on track. I was trying hard to run 6:20 miles and all I could get were 6:25s.
When I did miles 17 and 18 in 6:51 and 7:10, I knew it was not my day.

I made the decision to pack it in and run a respectable time. However, with each mile, my energy ebbed. I won’t blame the heat or the sun. For the most part I was running in shadow (which was also in perfect synch with my plan. Running the times I wanted at that time of day, kept me in the shade until mile 23). I just plain and simply did not have it. Maybe it was my needing to get up at 2:30 AM to be at the bus at 3:30 to get shuttled out for the 5:30 AM start. Maybe it is the stress of beginning a new career. Perhaps it was my triathlon or my pacing effort last week in Philly. Regardless, it does not matter.

However, while I am extremely disappointed, I am also happy. As they were not accurately measured for certification, I would never count them, but I set new PRs in the 5k, 10k, 15k, and half marathon (and I am guessing every other distance in between). And not by a smidgen. I crushed them all.

But it is the fact that, after deciding my day was done and my time kept slipping away, I dug very deep to make sure I got the absolute bare minimum of goals I have set for all my marathons from here on out that aren’t ridiculously hard to begin with: to run a sub-3. With my needle on empty I pulled in to the finish in a 2:59:14 or so.

That makes 7 straight sub-3s for me in races I was trying to do so in (my pacing effort at Carlsbad and the first of my two Boston Marathons in one day do not count) and a BQ in 17 of my last 19 marathons.

It was a very wise person who said “Anyone can run when they feel well. It is doing so when you don’t, that is impressive”.

So I will take solace in that and realize that even a bad day running is better than a good day at work!

I finished 17th and 7th in my age group. I hate my age group! :)

Here are my miles:

5:50 (5k in 17:38)
6:44 Start of big hill (10k in 37:40)
7:21 Big hill
6:55 Tail end of big hill
6:11 (15K in 58:30)
6:36 (stopped to pee)
6:24 (1:23:30 half)
6:34 (dropped Gu; stopped to get it)
6:38 (hill; was quite pleased with this split actually)
6:51 (WITH a downhill: Now I knew race was over)
8:03 (ugh)
1:42 (.2)

p.s. I don't talk about my personal life much but this was a bitter pill to swallow as I was dedicating this race to my Aunt Rita who succumbed to cancer Tuesday night. I have no doubt she is the one who helped me dig deep and get the sub-3.


Anonymous said...

No jokes today Dane, just a big congrats for digging deep when feeling like crapola.

I think it just comes down to the running rule that it sometimes takes a few tries before meeting a new goal. You've been blistering goals left and right, and eventually, as with everything in life, you've got to take a step back before resuming the relentless forward motion. No doubt you will resume very quickly.

Perhaps you need to throw some rocks in your pack and train the Charlie Mercer way...

Anonymous said...

Can't really beat what Charlie said. Sorry to hear about your aunt but I will say job well done on a day that might not've been your ideal but was still an amazing effort!

Ross said...


I am so sorry to hear the news about your Aunt Rita. Cancer is unrelenting and the toll it takes on our loved one is too much for us to bear.

Best wishes to your family at this time.

Take care,

Anne C said...

You continue to impress the hell out of me.

Yellow Scuba said...

I am sorry about your Aunt Rita, especially for your father.

I laughed inside when you called and described the race, and in doing so said, "I decided to just 'jog' it in." Jog it in? To a sub-3? I love the progress you've made in the last year, and how you can now go sub-3 on a tough day. That is amazing to most people, Dane. Congratulations on never giving up on a really hard day. I'm proud of you. Oh, and leave it to you to get a bunch of PRs in the first half of a marathon!! Goober. :)

Runner Tammy said...


So sorry to hear about your aunt. Sub-3 is highly respectable in my book! I dream of the day I might get sub 4 (I think it will involve a rabid bear chasing me!).

I love your explanations related to little extra bits of time at various miles(gotta pee would have taken me 7 minutes in itself..although this perhaps has to do with my gender).

You are so amazing and even amazing people can have a bad day!

Take care,


1L said...

Dane - So sorry to hear about your Aunt! Remember some days we just don't have it, and I would put some blame on personal stuff as well as your effort last week in the heat and humidity. Still feeling crummy and you ran sub-3 - remarkable. Keep that head high.

See you in St.George.

Elizabeth said...

Sorry to hear about your Aunt. Congratulations on yet another sub-3:00. You could probaly start running these things in your sleep.

Cyberpenguin said...


I'm sincerely sorry to hear the news about your aunt. I can relate to what you wrote about digging deep, especially when you are grieving. During those moments, running becomes a "place," & not just an activity, if you know what I mean.

I think it's admirable that you stuck it out, even when you didn't feel well. That's resilience! This sport certainly builds character, that's for sure!

Thanks for all your emails & hope that your public speaking career is going well!