EVENT: Los Angeles Marathon XXII
DATE: Sunday, March 4, 2007
LOCATION: Los Angeles, CA
RACE BEGAN: 8:30 am
FINISH TIME: 05:29:02
New Route for 2007
Time and splits
"The first 20 miles are all legs. The last 6 are all heart."
Basically, all the running that I had been doing during the past year had been in anticipation for this race. The two half-marathons, constant running, or when not running, worrying about staying on a training schedule and not eating too poorly so I can run, the $$$ spent on registrations, shoes, gym membership, the sunburns, toe trauma, muscle-tearing, etc. etc. were all totally worth it.
The day began with a brisk walk to the subway station and a ride to Hollywood from Downtown LA. It was my first ride on a subway, and the whole half-hour ride, I kept thinking that I was going to have to run that entire way back. The sun was high and hot when the race started. Not too long into the race, my stomach started to hurt because of carbs that were not absorbing properly and bitter Gatorade. I also had to take 5+ min to use the restroom before the 10th mile.
Up until the 18th mile, my splits were decent. At mile 22, the soleus muscle in both my legs were about to pull, so I had to run with extreme care or let them pull (which could have been the end of the race right there), stopping every so often to try to massage some life back into them. I'd start running and aburptly stop because I felt a yank on my leg. Between then and mile 25 was horribly frustrating. Mile 26 came up really quickly, probably because I picked up the pace, and people were cheering. The last 300-something yards did not seem very long. I kept thinking back to my treadmill workouts when I'd sprint the last half mile of most of my runs. I could not believe that it was finally over. It felt really great to finally get the medal I had been wanting for a year.
There were some pretty cool landmarks throughout, such as the Kodak and Pantages Theaters, the Walk of Fame, Hollywood Bowl, USC, Staples & LA Convention Center, Exposition Park, and lots of other cool things that I was simply too tired to notice, including roadside sermons. I really should train better next year so I can have an easier time. All my legs would allow me to do is 22, and although I had the energy to start running fast in those last few miles, they would not allow me that luxury. I think next time, I will train until 22 miles and run on harder surfaces more often. All in all, a great adventure.