Wednesday, March 21, 2012

2012 Publix Georgia Marathon

March 18, 2012 7:00 AM
Atlanta, GA

Time Pace Division Division
Bib #
Owen 3:44:21 8:33 M35-39 33/221 186/1259 233/1915 1406

Written by Owen:

I didn't think this race was going to happen.  After the Myrtle Beach Marathon on February 18th, my left foot was hurting very bad.  I took several days off from running and it was feeling better.  I tried running and within half a mile it was hurting again.  So I took four days off then tried again, same problem.  Each time I took longer off until I had been off for almost three weeks with only 10 days until the Publix Georgia Marathon.

I decided I better make an appointment with my doctor.  He looked at the x-ray and saw a heel spur.  He said because I pushed it harder in Myrtle Beach, the area around the heel spur was inflamed.  He gave me a VERY painful shot and told me I could run in three days.  That put me exactly one week before this marathon.  Normally I'd be two weeks into a taper.  I ran 4 miles that day, then 10 miles the next, with no pain!  Hallelujah, I was back.

We had planned on driving down to Atlanta as a family immediately after the Run the Creek 5k on Saturday, but then the organizers of the Charlotte Thunder Road Marathon called me and asked me if I'd man their booth for them at the expo in Atlanta on Friday and Saturday.  I couldn't pass that up, a way to pay for my trip down there, so I flew down by myself and my family cheered for me from Charlotte.

I didn't get any good pictures at the expo, so I borrowed this one from Elzabeth (Running for Bling), who I ran into at the Expo.
I decided I should never work an expo for a marathon that I am running again.  Being on my feet for hours upon hours the two days before the marathon was not wise, especially since my foot was less than 100%.  I plan on doing some expos for Taz Running, but will do them at races I'm not running.

Friday and Saturday were very long days, but I had a good time.  After the expo on Saturday, I found the address of a Spaghetti Factory that was within walking distance of my hotel (I had no car), and walked to it.  To my disgust after walking about a mile in a not so nice part of town, I discovered it was a vacant building.  So I hit a Publix grocery store on my way back to the hotel and bought a loaf of delicious bread, bagels, bananas and had a hotel room picnic the night before my marathon.  Not ideal, but it worked.

Saturday morning I awoke at 4:30, had a bagel and banana, showered, got all ready, and walked to the MARTA station (Atlanta's public transportation) that was a block from my hotel. That station was very empty, I was surprised that there was only one other runner waiting to board.  When the train arrived I realized I was just not at a popular part of the city, because the train was PACKED with runners.

My view of the starting line from Corral C
The race started and, like always, I was so excited.  The start of a marathon is such a great feeling.  My training was so messed up the past month that I decided to just take this one slow and enjoy it.  That's what I did, and I did enjoy it for the first 20 miles or so.  Then, as you can see in my split times below, my muscles had had enough.  I was not horribly in pain, just not enjoying it any more.  I couldn't wait for the finish line.  It eventually came and I was just so happy that after such a horrible training month, I could still complete a marathon.

 After the race, I was so exhausted, and had a long walk (only a half-mile, but that's long when you have to penguin waddle it) to the MARTA station, I skipped all of the post-race festivities, including the food.  I hate it when marathons make you walk a long way to get the food.  All they had at the finish line was water and chocolate milk, you had to battle the crowds to get to the post-race food, and I just wasn't up for that.

I showered, gathered my things, checked out of the hotel and was back on MARTA to the airport.  Now my right foot feels like my left foot did after last month's marathon.  SO FRUSTRATING.  Doc said to wait a week and then he'll give me the same shot in that foot.

I'm just going to take the week off, run the NC Half-Marathon on Sunday, then go get the shot (if needed).

Here's my Garmin data.  The straight line from the green arrow to the red arrow shouldn't be there.  When I got out from underground at the train station near my hotel, my watch automatically started up again.

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