Wednesday, October 22, 2008

"you're in 9th place...."

the first of 4 marathons we're running in the large state of Texas was checked off this past weekend. Pa-Woo, Larry and I ran Marathon to Marathon in, well, Marathon, TX. it was a small marathon, but set in a beautiful part of the country, chock full of mountains, desert and quirkiness. we stayed at the Gage Hotel in Marathon - a place i'm already planning to revisit. not only was the hotel and its accommodations unique, its restaurant was one of the best at which i've ever eaten. even better was the chance to hang out with Larry and Sheri, who we have been lucky to befriend and travel to many marathons with.

I went into this marathon with the idea that i'd take it easy in preparation for this weekend's North Face Challenge Endurance Challenge - 31 trail miles in Madison, WI. but as i started off, with mountains around me and the course lit by a desert sunrise, i flat took off. felt great. kept feeling good on a very hilly course and when i got to mile 18, a man at the water stop said, "I think you're in 9th place."

i am not fast. and even if 10 people were running the race, i wouldn't guess to be in 9th place. so when he told me this, i cranked up a new strategy: finish this marathon in the top 10. i figured it'd be the only chance i would have in my marathoning. so, with about 8 miles left, i kept myself safely away from two encroaching runners, paced the women's winner, and flat skipped the water stops and the urge to pee. by the time i got to the finish line, i was still in 9th. a small step for mankind, a big step in my running world. as always, i ran in Brooks shoes, supplemented my nutrition and hydration with Hammer products and wore an aerodynamic do-rag.

the race ended and the rest of the fun began: lounging in a beautiful hotel courtyard, sharing war stories with dad and Larry, celebrating with good food and some post-race-party beer...appropriately served in the race's remaining gatorade cups.

i will definitely make a plan to run this again. hoping to get a whole crew to go down and spend some additional time in Marathon, TX. big thanks to Ma-Woo and Sheri for the incredible crew vehicle support. they made this possible, as always.

today's schedule includes a massage and some light running. tomorrow i'll hop on the chiropractor's table to ensure alignment before this weekend's ultra. more soon.



Blogger bailey said...

Nice job Andy! I am really excited for you.

11:51 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Top Ten, way to go!

6:45 PM  
Blogger Larry said...

Very tough run but definately worth going back to next year. Knowing what lies ahead could make it easier to prepare for. This was an excellent edition of your blog.

9:55 PM  
Blogger Hincapie / Coca-Cola / Barkley Cycling said...

There you go, boy! Way to get it done. Word on the steets is that you have the Kenyans a little scared. "This guy gets 9th...AND runs with a video camera"

8:20 AM  
Blogger Pensive Girl said...

i know this post is old... but it's um, making me want to start training for another big event. thanks for the motivation, ninth place :)

3:18 PM  
Blogger aa said...


4:09 AM  

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