Sunday, October 28, 2012
Did that really happen?
Wow, so I set a new PR today by 13 minutes!!! I'm still riding a runner's high, but at the same time am already thinking about the next race and trying to break 3:40. And then maybe, just maybe, working toward a Boston qualifying time of 3:35. Before today I was fully expecting to wait another 10 years before trying to BQ, but now it actually seems possible in the next few years. I think the question is how badly do I want it? But figuring out the answer will have to wait for another time.
This and the next few posts are going to get into some pretty detailed, boring stuff about the race. This is purely so that I have a record for myself to look back at because as I was trying to figure out what to wear for the marathon I was wishing I had more info about how I felt at past races. For the rest of this post I'm going to take stock of how I'm doing post-race...
I'm still amazed at how good I feel right now. Not too much worse than after a long training run. I thought I might stiffen up after sitting in the car for five hours but I was still okay afterward. It probably helped that I wasn't driving so I could move my legs around a bit.
Immediately after I finished I had to stop and catch my breath, but after a few minutes of walking and drinking water I pretty much felt fine. It seemed like such a marked contrast between my other two marathons. After Route 66, I remember being so tired and walking so slowly and almost wanting to cry because I was there all by myself without anyone to help me. After Rock 'n' Roll Seattle I was in a better mood but still sore enough that walking, and especially sitting and stairs were difficult. Today I can even walk up AND DOWN stairs with ease. You know you're a runner when being able to carry your own suitcase downstairs after a marathon is a big deal. :-)
I have a few small aches and pains but nothing really worth noting yet. I think they'll go away with a good night's sleep or two. Also despite my liberal use of body glide, I have a couple blisters between the toes on my right foot but they don't bother me much.
Before the race, I was hoping to "empty my system" but my body didn't cooperate. I was worried that I might have GI issues during the race or that all the carbo-loading I did would sit heavy in my stomach, but luckily I didn't have any problems at all. It wasn't until afterward that my stomach started to feel a little funny. I'm not sure if it was from the stress of the run on my body or from something I ate, or maybe both.
I've noticed that I seem to get weird side effects from caffeine. I have pretty much no caffeine on a daily basis, aside from any minute amounts of caffeine that might be present in chocolate. Occasionally I'll have fuel with caffeine during a long training run, but I keep it minimal. That's because I don't want to build a tolerance to caffeine so when I have it during a race I get the maximum benefit. I used to think that the side effects were from the effort of running hard, but after doing some races with less or no caffeine, I realized it was the caffeine. While in the car on the way home, the way I described it was that it made my face feel dry. My skin felt hot and tight and I'm pretty sure my face looked flushed. I was constantly putting on chapstick. And I could also feel it in my nose... it's hard to explain, but it's sort of like when you go to the dentist and the anaesthesia goes all the way up to your nose. My nose wasn't numb, but it didn't feel normal. I think the warmth and stuffiness of the car made it worse, because I started to feel better as soon as I got home although it still hasn't worn off completely. The alertness and energy benefits go away pretty quickly while the side effects linger much longer. It's annoying, but I can put up with it in order to get the performance benefits.
Okay, time to sleep now and hopefully everything will feel better in the morning. I'm going to cross my fingers that I won't wake up stiff and sore tomorrow.