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The not so secret Melbourne Marathon II


Glad to have Brendan and Nadine as company during the weekend, Nadine and I waited for Brendan for their elite briefing at the expo and after which we had a short walk at the River then back to our accomodation to freshen up for an early carbo loading.

Race Meal Nadine was very Familiar with Melbourne, I was happy to get invited by them to join them for dinner and she suggests we go to the Italian district for carbo loading!  they picked me up and settled in a nice family owned Ristorante!  I had the safe choice, Spaghetti Bolognese, and Gelato for desert.
-Race routines got back at the accomodation at 9, prepared the clothes, the watch, hat, socks(decided to wear a new socks i bought at te expo- a no-no on running a marathon, to run on something new, But I think one cause of my foot injury was I was not feeling comfortable with the sox I wore that last long run).  Set alarm for 4:30, bed by 11.  Race day forecasted weather will be sunny, knowing Melbourne having 4 Seasons in a day, Its hard to tell, I am defenitely wearing shorts and my Woodstock bra top, however, should I bring a jumper to Race start and just throw it at the end?
-Race Breaky I took with me two tablespoons of Chia Seeds and due that the reception was close already when I arrived from Dinner, I bought some cereal and milk from 7-11 for my Breakfast.  Chia Seeds+Cereal and Coffee.  Showered and dressed up.  No patches on the foot, however I applied so much Voltaren on my foot and socks!1 hour before the race, had V.  I am 2 Km away from the Start.  So I took it as a warm up jog, 13 minutes I was already at the Start.  I reckon, I would be fine without jumper at the start line, it was getting warm towards the venue.
-Race Dropped my bag, queued for Toilets, stretched and headed to the start line. There was not much of a hassle.  Foot? Not feeling any niggles as of yet, check.

10 minutes before the start I was already at the start.  I was looking for the 3:50 bus, it was not there, All I saw was 4:00 bus.  i was 3 meters away frm him.  I did not care, I just wanted to know where I was positioned.  I was not even thinking of overtaking the pacer when the gun will start.  The matra for this race was, “foot, please don’t act up, let me finish the race and bring me home.”

At 7:00 the Gun was fired, off goes the elite runners, one minute 38 seconds after,we were moving slowly.  So i started to pray the Rosary.  Why you ask?  I feel humblest and the best state praying in my sincerest alone and the road and Him, with His strength He gives me, pushing the human body, His creation, to limits, makes you wonder how much Miracle he had to build one human to be able to do such activities.  The marathon keeps me in pace and relax that I can do my rituals in the best spirit and thinking I should be in when praying.  Amidst the thousands of runners, I was in m own world, hustling my foot on the pavement and praying.  It was a gloomy morning.  I could not remember much, very little expectators that morning as we went pass through St Kilda’s towards Albert’s Park.  2. 5. 7, 10 Kms My foot was still feeling sane.  I am glad but not overly excited, I did not want to rejoice prematurely.

At St. Kilda’s road, it was a long flat stretch running along the beach road, few residents and expectators and supporters were there.  It was not as much as boring as the first bit, and I reached the half way point.  I was doing a negative split based on the 4 hR pace band i had taped around my wrist.  I Know, somewhere along the route, that negative will just compensate soon.

Everything feels okey, not even the foot.

By the 27 Km I was feeling or my legs were feeling exhausted, and so tempted to walk, but I did not.  reached 34Km and It was getting worse feeling buggered.  I kept telling myself no walking no walking.  Not Until the 35 Kilometer, 7 Kms more away to the Finish, I started or my legs started giving up on me.  I don’t feel fatigued, or puffed yet the weight of my legs were heavy, and it was hard lifting and shuffling it.  I noticed that it did help that every now and again sipping from the gatorade I picked up from the drink station was bit making it feel less heavy, so it was a jog literally for the next 2 kilometers, and at 38th KM my mind gave up and I was walking running, walking running, talking to myself.  Well I thought before I reached 35th I might be doing a PB, but I thought of it too early.

The last 5 kilometers was hard, thinking it would be half more hour running and the bit around the Botanical gardens was an incline or hilly end.  I knew this, as I did have a run on the “Tan” two weeks ago.  I run half way up the hill then walk then running downhills.

The 4 -hour bus drivers caught up and stopped at the intersection of Flinders and St. Kilda motivatig runners saying we are two minutes ahead … of time before 4 hours.  I did wanted to make it to that 4-hour at least, so I was dragging my legs to the ast 2 KMs jogging, at this point you did not want to walk as the expectators is getting thicker and thicker, It is a marathon not a walkathon, I should harden up and just keep on jogging.

At last, the entrance the stadium, we are almost home, there is no way I would be walking in front of all this crowds.  Brendan told me 100m finish on the track, but when I got in the stadium there were an eighth filled statdium with expectators roaring and applausing for their friends and families.

Marathon and half-marathon runners get to finish in the stadium.  The announcer was saying, “enjoy your finish.”  I knew and I felt there is no way I can sprint to the finish, and I did not run onthe plastic mat they laid on the grass towards the finish, which later i learned that this is for the wheel-chair competitors anyway.  That plastic sruface was hard and slippery so i just run alongside of it on the grass.  200m around the track, and I am home.  Glad to see the clock to have done sub-4 despite the injured foot.

I finished in 3:58:03 according to clock time.  Not bad i told myself, thanked God for bringing me home safe, hoping I did not break any bones in foot.

Recover and Finish

Never did I see a best finish area chute in all the races I have been.  This has been the best so far.  At the finish, they escort you down the stadium, not allowing people to mock around the finish chutes, down the stadium, although it is had walking down a slope for someone who just run a marathon, you get to the drinks station and fruits, then as you walk further, you get into your bag collection, which was correctly tagged, identified by a sticker they stuck on the bib, in less than 5 minutes, I was out of the stadium. I commend the organizers for having a that in a very organized manner the logistics was very very well planned.

The 10 and 5 Km run finished outside the stadium so crowd was controlled.

I was pleased very pleased, even I did not do any PB, I am glad my feet did not let me down early on the race, and I am very happy and lucky to still have managed to do the sub 4 despite of injury.  I know, I am a silly girl, and you are hoping I did not do any damage to my foot.

Melbourne Marathon, 10-Oct-2010
Venue: Melbourne, Vic, Australia
Distance: 42.125 Km
Chip Time: 3:56:46

Results can be found here

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