May 2014 - Run for the Thrills

back to back

Back to Back Marathons – 2 Marathons in 13 Days

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Turning 40 demands a statement.  What about doing back to back marathons?!

My years may be increasing, but my determination and my resolve are only growing stronger, not weaker, with age.  I ran Boston a couple of weeks before the big birthday – that was my way of anticipating the dreaded 40.  Then, when my friend, also newly 40, decided to run the Mississauga Marathon, a mere 13 days after Boston, I thought – let’s live wild and help pace her through that marathon.  Karen was setting out to qualify for her first Boston Marathon.  I have never run two marathon’s back to back before.  It isn’t exactly recommended…but I figured, if one marathon is good, then two marathons can only be better.  Let’s defy this whole aging thing and stare it down into submission.

So, I did it.  I ran Mississauga Marathon this past Sunday May 4th with Karen Natho (Nate).  I loved it!  My goal was to help Nate get a Personal Best (PB) – specifically to finish in 3:30.  This would give her a 22minute PB.  I am so pleased to say we accomplished this.  The last 10km were difficult after fighting through some tough windy sections.  Nate dug deep and kept going, though I could tell she was hurting.  It was fun to be in the place of assisting a fellow runner.  I have had so many friends encourage and support me in my running over the years.  Now I was there to do whatever I could to motivate, challenge, assist Nate to get to that finish line in her goal time.

I have to say it was also enjoyable to run a marathon without the pressure of trying to beat my own times.  I was enjoying the run and the only pressure on me was to make sure I paced my friend properly.

Two marathons in two weeks was great.  I do need to ensure I recover properly now.

Some insights on how to run Back to Back Marathons:

  1. Take lots of epsom salts baths:  Focus on recovery after the first Marathon.  Take epsom salts baths to clear out the waste products and loosen up the muscles.
  2. Do yoga:  Stretch and more stretching.
  3. Get a massage.
  4. Do easy runs between the two marathons to keep the legs loose.  After some marathons I have taken the entire following week off from running.  Between my two marathons I opted for easy runs to keep my legs moving and muscles from tightening up.
  5. Following the two marathons I will take time to do cross-training.  This week I will focus on swimming and do more cycling, giving my legs a break from the pounding of running.  I want to allow weak stress points in my bones and muscles to heal before doing any more intense running.

I have to admit, I am already dreaming of the next Marathon.  I have not chosen one yet…which one will it be?!
I can honestly say, I can’t wait for the next one!

 

 

karen

Well Done Mississauga Marathon

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A review of the Mississauga Marathon by Karen Natho.  Karen ran a personal best at the marathon on Sunday.  She ran a 3:30:40 marathon – a very impressive personal best of 22minutes and a qualifying time for Boston.

Well done Karen!

* * *

The Mississauga Marathon has never been a race that I considered running, perhaps because of the time of the year, the location or the start time… if it was not for my running friend speaking so highly about the race venue, route and atmosphere I would never have considered it…. the clincher was that it was a Boston Qualifier race, which was a spring goal.

Here are 10 things about the race that were highlights (and perhaps lowlights):

  1. The great race kit at pick up. The initial bag of treats, from Cadbury’s easter cream eggs to a choice of shirt size, to all the freebees (dog food, Cold-FX, gardening supplies) that you could add to the bag while walking around the expo was amazing. I was there picking up for 6 other runners, who commented afterwards that this was one of the best race kits they had ever gotten.
  2.   Loads of parking and a row of endless port-a-potties at the start line… I was able to park meters from the start line…a  rarity in running races!
  3. A local and provincial celebrity Hazel McCallion – mayor of Mississauga for 35 years, 93 years strong, starting the race and waving, smiling to all the runners as you passed her !
  4. The unbelievable houses (or should I say mansions) that we passed in the first section of the race, I never knew that there were homes like that in Mississauga (as I usually only pass by on the QEW and 403 to get somewhere).
  5. The abundance of water stations, the race website states every 2 km, but there were only 1km apart. Before you could think about wanting water, there was a friendly volunteer asking you if you wanted Gatorade or water! No need to carry water… thanks for the advice run buddy!
  6. Going on and off of the waterfront trail in the second half was lovely. It was a route of always changing scenery and the number of volunteers on the route made it practically impossible to get off track.
  7. The first site of Lake Ontario as you turned from a small street onto the trail, it looked so inviting, that my run buddy, actually said she would consider jumping in… not an option as we had a race to finish.
  8. The gel stations towards the end, it was nice to have the option of grabbing more than 1. I have been to many races where they restrict one gel per runner… here they were encouraging you to take more, and asking you if you had a favour preference. On a side note, I did carry 3 gels with me, of which I took 1 at 12km, another at 24km, and forced ½ a gel into me at 34km…  the gels I did take were handed off to my run buddy. I had a stomach ache for the last 10km, I believe the words “I think I might vomit” were said a few times. So the sensation of having to hold the gels were not making things better…
  9. Chocolate milk and changing stations at the finish line… needed the milk to start to feel human again and no line ups to get the pre-packed dry warm clothes.
  10. The warm waiting bus (a walk that felt long after the long run, but certainly not as far as the website implied) that left and headed right back where we parked immediately afterwards.

Well done Mississauga… will I consider doing this race again? Absolutely, however NOT next year as I am heading to BOSTON!!