Damaris' Marine Corps Marathon & Richard's MCM 10K Race Reports
This weekend, I ran my 18th marathon, the 8th one for the year in my quest for another star on the Marathon Maniacs club. This was planned as a fun run and it was that, especially after the Chicago DNF. I considered earlier in the week to go for a PR but due to my lingering issues (explained in the Chicago DNF RR), I decided just to have fun and if I felt I could push, to do so, but not to concentrate on it at this time.
Mr. Docket is training for his first HM and we have done most of his runs together. In preparation for his HM, I registered him for the MCM 10K as a training run and a test of his progress. That was before he got a bad case of shin splints after his test 5K in July. He had his ups and downs during the Summer but he is up to 8 miles now with his first 9 miler in just a few days. So, the 10K would be a nice fun run for him as well.
Since we are taking a few days off for the NYCM this weekend, we arrived in DC late Friday and left right after the marathon. As soon as we arrived, husband said he would not move from Miami as it was cold (it was, in fact, 47F) but as the weekend went on, he got used to such Arctic weather (LOL) and reconsidered. We did not do much that night but had a beer and sandwiches for dinner and went to bed. The hotel we chose was at Rosslyn by the highway, which provided a great avenue to leave immediately after the race. I could take the metro to the Pentagon station for the race while he could take the metro and get to the Smithsonian where his race was to start. I think this year, we chose the hotel wisely.
On Saturday morning, we headed to the expo. On the way, I texted Mona (RWOL forumite from the MRT Turtles forum) to meet at the expo and coincidentally we were on the same train at the same time, so the FE happened. When we arrived at the expo, the line extended all the way around the stadium. There had just been a power outage at the tent and they were limiting the number of runners inside the tent in case of accidents. It took an hour to get into the tent to pick our bibs up. It was very dark. I really hope the guy that grab my ass was my husband; however, I cannot be sure now.
After packet pickup, Mona, her husband, Mr. Docket, and me headed to the expo. We spent the next 2 hours there, where we manage to lose Mona and her hubby but saw them in the distance several times. Sorry, Mona! Mr. Docket bought shorts, gloves, a hat, socks, and other things, while I bought my new running skirt from runningskirts.com, met Mark Remy (who I had never met but am friends with in FB), and had a great time at the expo. But by the time we left the expo, it was after 2pm.
I had planned to go by Brian's house (a fellow MCM forumite from the RWOL forums), but by the time we exited the expo, we only had 3 hours to visit one place in DC which we missed last year due to lack of time: the Air and Space Museum. By the time we arrived there it was close to 4pm so we had a quick lunch and visited there until close to 6pm, did some shopping and waited for the next FE.
LRS had planned an FE with bingo_jenn for 7pm and miraculously, we headed there. We are always missing FEs (as I missed Brian's earlier) due to lack of time and/or plans made by Mr. Docket. So I was happy that we were able to join Eric, Jenn, Erin, her husband and friends, and other members of the Karma FB group and friends. Here is a picture of the FE:
You cannot believe how much my hair has grown!
We had a great time, had some pizza, beer, and the company of friends. We headed to our hotel, went into the hot tub (this hotel had a spa indoor pool, hot tub, and showers for post race which was the reason I chose the hotel). We spent almost an hour there, went upstairs, prepared our gear and went to bed.
Docket's Race Day:
I woke up at 6am to head to the Rosslyn metro station. Woke up Mr. Docket as I was leaving at 6:30am, went downstairs, grabbed a croissant and Gatorade from the little store located at the lobby and headed to the metro. The temps were in the low 40s and for the race it would be between 45-55F so I chose this outfit:
Robert will notice the Team TJ bracelet on my right wrist. I think I was rousing the crowd here but the photographer caught me at the end. Ha!
When I arrived at the athlete's village, the first thing I look for are the potta potties. I got in line and managed to see the wonderful starting ceremonies in which a disabled soldier comes down via parachute and there are flags flying and all. I missed the rest because I was too far away to see or hear anything and then inside the potty. At this point, I texted Mr. Docket who was waiting for his start, wished him luck and turned off my iPhone (which is having some battery issues).
I managed to get into the corral for the 4:30-4:45 time with minutes to spare. In hindsight, I should have started a bit further ahead but you know me, honest until the end. I was boxed in from the get go and weaved so much, I ran 27.38. But hey, I had already decided for a fun race, so what is an extra mile between friends, right?
Miles 1-10 went by quickly. Lots of short hills and inclines, which you know I am not used to. I took the first 3 easy and then ran some easy/MP miles. Unfortunately for this year, the water stations could not keep up with the demand for Gatorade Endurance or water and no matter how fast the Marines worked, there was never water ready for me to pick up, so each water station took me about a minute, 20-30 seconds to wait for my water or Gatorade, and then a bit of a walk to get out of the masses doing the same and start to run. So, although I was running 10-10:30mm during Miles 3-10, the paces were really slow: 11:51, 11:14, 10:57 (first water station), 10:11, 11:01 (boxed in), 11:45 (water station), 10:37, 11:43 (water station), 10:50 (boxed in), 9:53.
Miles 11-18 went basically the same. Some miles fast, some miles slow, including a couple of stops to fix my sock (my toe bothered me and did some sock bunching but it was not as bad as some races you've seen), and a long stop for the potties at Mile 15: 10:25, 11:14, 11:11, 13:40 (stop to fixed sock), 34:37 (potty line), 10:48, 12:45 (water station), 12:16 (sock issue). I know people worried about me after I crossed the 25K mark because the pace different was substantial but nothing happened to me except for the fact that I had to pee!
Miles 19-26.2. Another thing I noticed about my slower than usual paces is that by the 20K mark, I had run an extra 0.50 mile from all the weaving to get myself out of the boxed in I was getting. By Mile 18 I was doing fine, but by Mile 22, I had run another 0.50 so I was ahead by one full mile, making these paces slower than I am used to seeing. I also started having the same pain I had in Chicago (albeit a mild sensation vs. blinding pain), so I started taking it easy and walking some of the mileage whenever the sensation became a bit pronounced): 11:58 (water station), 12:25 (sock issue), 12:36 (water station), 14:04 (walked a bit due to pain), 12:18 (walked a bit), 12:52(walked while eating my munchkins!), 12:00, 11:45 (Iwo Jima hill), 10:14 (last 0.20). I wanted to finish at around 4:45 (which would be an easy pace) and ended up with a 5:28, which included many stops and a long line to use the restroom. Not bad.
Overall, the race is awesome. I saluted every Marine I could, gave hundreds of high-fives, and earned my 18th medal. Mr. Docket does not want me doing any more big races (after NY, of course) and after being boxed in, I cannot blame him, but this race I would love to do every single year.
I ordered the pictures but they are not ready yet and I don't want to keep you guys waiting, so proofs are all you're going to get for now.
Oh, by the way, the course is a bit peculiar:
The fact that the penis points at Congress is, I think, hilarious.
Mr. Docket's Race Day
As I mentioned, hubby is training for his first HM in December and this was to be another easy run for him. I told you he would be able to run faster in DC because there was a 50F difference between DC (45F) and Miami (95-100F) at the time we left, but he didn't believe me. His 6 miler LR was done in 1:35. He finished in 1:17:59, a great time for the paces he has been doing. I am very proud of him.
Oh, and I don't know how he got his sense of style but I think I recognize the brand. he will not be pleased with this picture, though.
Out of hundreds of photographers and thousands of pictures, THIS IS THE ONLY ONE WE HAVE OF HIM! And I wonder why people think my husband does not exist.
Thanks for reading!