This is going to be the most interesting article ever. I am going to talk about my best race ever and my worst race ever. They happened within a two week window. I am hoping that people will read this and at least learn a valuable lesson.
Two weeks ago today (today being Saturday July 6, 2013), I ran the best marathon of my life. And since the marathon distance is my favorite, I suppose I can say that was the greatest race of my life thus far. I was in Duluth, Minnesota at Grandma’s Marathon. I ran 2:50:25, crushing my previous PR by 8 minutes and placing 15th overall female.
Today, well really last night, I ran my worst race ever.
Midnight Madness 50 miler in Tulsa two years ago, I placed first overall (males and females) in a time of 7:01. I shocked myself at the time. I returned to the starting line attempting to defend my title and break my own course record. This, sadly, did not happen. I started aggressively, but I still don’t think it was a pace I could not have held for 51.5 miles. At 27 miles, something in my legs just gave way. I came into the aid station finishing my third loop, and for some reason my body just shut down. My legs hurt, my hips hurt (which was very scary because 2 years ago when I felt pain like that, I was out for 5 months) and my feet hurt. And it wasn’t just achy normal runners’ hurt, because I experience that everyday and manage to get through it. It was severe hurting. The kind of hurt that you know if you don’t stop immediately, something horrible is going to happen. I jogged another mile out, then I stopped. I turned around and walked back to the start line. I was done. I made it a darn good 32 miles and I was just done.
So there you have it. One great race and one devastating race all within 14 days. The lesson here???? Don’t expect greatness so close together. If I could do it again, I would have started Midnight Madness at an 8:30 pace instead of a 7:30 pace. No, I would not have won or broken my own course record, but at least I would have one of those spectacular finisher’s medals, a record without a DNF, and another ultra marathon in the books. Oh well, there is always next time. And nobody can take away my 2:50:25. Happy Running, All!!
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