The ASICS LA Marathon Recap

 

I’ve already blabbed enough about the party, the crew we got to run with and some other random highlights from the weekend so let’s talk about the actual race shall we?

The ASICS LA Marathon.

I love this particular race. Really it’s one of my favorites. Everything is awesome (I’ve been saying that way too much lately by the way) – the crowd support, the point to point course, the finish right at the ocean, the fact that it’s close and you get to see all of LA, it’s a fast and flat course (very similar to Boston), etc.

The first time I ran this marathon was last year. It was epic. I got a PR. I loved everything about it. My recap is here.

This year I still really loved it and especially everything about the entire weekend, but I had a pretty tough time on the course. It was a rough one for me.

I know it just comes with the territory, everyone has races that aren’t great, but it’s always a bit disappointing.

It wasn’t a goal race for me and I didn’t plan on trying for a PR or anything anyway as I have a pretty full race schedule ahead, but I’m still pondering over what went wrong.

But……

I do also think that it just means the next race will be that much better and it’s important to learn and grow from experiences like these. What would things be like if every single race was a good one, right? That doesn’t build character.

Smile

 

Okay, so let’s recap.

I was fortunate enough to be there with the ASICS Blogger Challenge Team. We had a special shuttle that took us to the start at Dodger Stadium. We met in the hotel lobby at 4:30 am. It felt just a tad early with the time change and everything. Ha. Not to mention I had a pretty poor night of sleep. It was one of those nights where you’re just laying there tossing and turning and can’t sleep. Yeah, good times.

When we got to our special VIP area

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thankfully there was coffee.

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I was just a little excited since there was lots of it.

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Wait, exactly how much time do I have to chug down coffee?

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Smile

I’d never been inside a Stadium Club before. It’s the happening place.

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They had lots of other pre race goodies for all of us too. The purple potato though, well, that may have come with me in my bag.

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Ha ha.

Oh and special fancy inside club bathrooms before a race- those are key.

We headed to our seeded corrals about an hour before race time.

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It was actually already a pretty comfortable temperature. We didn’t need any gloves or throw aways or anything.

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We waited in our corral for a long time. You know, just long enough for me to realize I had to go to the bathroom, but couldn’t leave the corral. Lovely.

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Shortly after the sun came up it was go time.

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These ladies (Monica and MIchele) are the best by the way

Michele and I planned on running together and shoot for a 3:20ish pace.

Right off the bat my stomach was not right. I was not feeling well, but thought maybe I could run it off a bit.

By mile 8 we were feeling great. We were right on pace and all smiles.

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I was especially all smiles when I passed the big screen and saw the message “Run like your going after the last purple potato” (or something like that). Yep, I don’t know who wrote that for me, but THANK YOU! It was so fun seeing that out there and definitely a highlight out on the course. I hope it was for me. Ha ha.

 

Things took a turn for the worse around mile 11 for me. I had to make a pit stop and was super sick to my stomach. It was not good. I thought after one stop all would be good, but I was wrong.

I managed to keep up a decent pace for a bit, but had to stop 2 more times in the next few miles.

I had a GU at mile 9, but by mile 16 I was hurting. It was hot out, my lips were super dry and I was thirsty, but my stomach was cramping and full of water since I had been stopping at every water station.

Pretty soon it was tough to breath and my chest started hurting. That never happens so it freaked me out a bit.

I started slowing down A LOT.

There was a few times between mile 16-20 that I questioned if I was going to make it to the finish. I’ve never really felt that before either.

My body just wanted no part of running.

I kept going though. I prayed. I asked for strength. I told myself it’s better that it was happening now rather than in Boston. I told myself that everyone has tough races.

Truth be told, I had a pretty off week last week leading up to the race and just couldn’t mentally get in race mode.

 

I tried not to look at my GPS anymore because I didn’t really want to see what pace I was running. I just wanted to concentrate on making it to that finish line.

Right around mile 22 I caught back up with Michele. She was having a tough time too. We were both definitely dehydrated a bit.

We said a couple of choice words, told each other we were a little ticked at the situation, complained a bit and then decided, well, let’s get this done together.

So we did.

We stuck together. We walked a few times. We stopped at every water station except the last two.

We didn’t talk much and couldn’t even really enjoy the fabulous downhill to the finish.

We saw a lot of other runners cramping up and stopping on the side of the road especially the last couple of miles. I think it was a tough day for a lot of people.

And finally we crossed that finish line hand in hand.

You can see our finish video HERE.

We made it.

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We started together and we ended together. Not quite the race we were hoping for, but we did it.

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Oh my goodness did I feel relief. I was so glad to just be done.

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image

Only about 18 minutes slower than my last marathon 7 weeks ago. Nice.

Smile

But, hey, at the end of the day, it’s just a race. I’m super proud that I ran a marathon. You never know what life will bring and when your body is going to decide it has had enough racing. I am truly blessed.

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Random, but before I forget, I have to tell you that there was a group of 182 Legacy Runners who ran the marathon who have run it every single year since the first race in 1986. How cool is that? 29 years in a row they’ve run this race. Crazy.

 

After the finish we headed to the VIP post race party.

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We stopped to chat with Josh Cox for a bit.

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He gave us some good advice on how to look at the race.

He said that it’s just another deposit in the bank. It all helps our training. Every race or long run is like a deposit in a bank account. When you have a big race you take it out and hope for the best, but sometimes it doesn’t turn out the way you planned. But the miles and the effort and the hard work go in as a hefty deposit.

He also reminded us that it’s still important to recovery well even after a race like we had.

I’m reminding myself of that this week. Even though I mentally want to get back out there as soon as possible and hop back into training for Boston and Big Sur, I ‘m making myself really rest and recover this week to give my body some time.

Oh and hey, check out what we got as a VIP.

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Oh heck yes we got brand spanking new Nutribullets.

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So darn excited.

We decided to go do the shower and ice thing and then come back down to the party.

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We tried to look presentable for Coach Kastor since he did such a great job of motivating us and guiding us through our training for the marathon.

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Mr, Andy Potts, well, he just told use to put ice down our pants. Ha.

You know, post race beverages and food are better when your clean.

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They are also better when served with teeny tiny hot sauces.

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We could still see and hear people finishing from the party and for the remainder of the afternoon actually.

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Oh yeah, and just because Brian told us to, we made sure to sport our medals all day.

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We had a little down time in the afternoon. Mine looked like this.

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It was perfect.

After our venture around town, we had a really amazing team dinner at BOA Steakhouse to celebrate.

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One last toast and talk from the Coach Kastor. Seriously one of the nicest people ever.

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I think I’m going to follow the training plan I have and start using it after this week to lead up to Boston. I really like his style.

Oh and a huge shout of to the wonderful Melinda who organized all of this for us. She is magnificent.

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Speaking of magnificent, so was our dessert.

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Ha ha.

The weekend was filled with good times with some darn amazing people.

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It will definitely go down as one of the best weekends ever.

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I’m already looking forward to next year. You better believe I’m coming back LA. Only 386 more days.

Smile

And this quote from Runner’s World today could not have come at a better time.

[source]

 

I know I’m getting up there in age, but I will never stop setting goals and dreaming big.

It’s important to stumble in life sometimes so you can just prove to yourself and to everyone else that you have the strength and determination to get right back up and keep moving forward.

Yes?

Yes.

 

Have you ever had a not that great race?

What’s your next big goal or dream?

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Comments

  1. 1

    Congrats on another terrific finish. Even though you struggled, you made it to the finish which is sooo something to be proud of! Looks like it was quite the good time (except of course for the rough racing moments). I would love to head west for a race like this, California is just so beautiful!

  2. 2
    Kathy says:

    You struggle and feel sick but still ended with a great time….or so I think so. ;-)

    It’s all about perspective right? Looks like a great weekend overall and simply doing it and not feeling like you need a medic is winning enough huh?!

  3. 3

    I’m so sorry friend, but it looks like you still had a great time, made the most of it and I love that. Talk about getting VIP treatment too. Wow, super cool experience!

  4. 4

    Congratulations on finishing! It’s awesome you two started and finished together. That’s teamwork! I’m sorry it wasn’t the best race. I like how the guys put it into perspective for you though. It’s all about the journey, right? Hugs friend!

  5. 5

    Wow regardless of your time (which is AMAZING btw) it looks like you all had an awesome an fun weekend! You pushed through and finished like a CHAMP!

  6. 6

    You guys did awesome!!!! It looks like it was just a great weekend, PR or not!!!! I had a race like that this fall. It was miserable! I trained SO hard for a 3:15 at Kansas City Marathon and I bonked really bad! I just hit the wall SO hard and ended with 3:44…which was 10 min slower than the first time I had run in when I did no speed training at all! I was pretty mad but decided to run another marathon 2 weeks later and ran it 15 minutes faster…which I was super happy with! It wasn’t 3:15, but it was only 2 weeks after a super hard race for me. We all have those races!…it is just part of it. I think it is just important to take them in stride and let them motivate us not discourage us! :)

  7. 7
    Samantha says:

    I can only equate that experience to a couple of really bad hikes I have had in my life. It is always miserable to be that ill too because one way or another you have to get yourself out. Good idea to think of it as another training in the bank. I hope you gave yourself a good recovery!

  8. 8

    I could have written this post myself the weekend before (well, except you still finished 10 minutes before my goal :) ). I don’t really know what happened, besides that the heat was terrible and there was 96% humidity (which I didn’t know was even possible previously), but I felt ready going into the race and my body just didn’t want to cooperate when I was out there. After a few minutes of moping around, I picked myself up and realized that I had just run a MARATHON, which so few people ever accomplish, and that even though that run kind of sucked, I’m SO grateful to be a runner. Glad you did the same! It sounds like such an AMAZING weekend!!

    • 8.1
      STUFT Mama says:

      Yes- you are a MARATHONER Megan!!!! It’s hard to not be disappointed sometimes, but…… it’s so nice having those races that DO go well!!! :) Do you have another race coming up?

      • Yes! Going to wait out the Big D Marathon in 2 weeks to see how the weather is, and may jump in it; if not I may join you in San Diego! If neither of those, I’ll just stick to a few halves this season!

  9. 9
    Kayla says:

    Congratulations on an awesome race! I ran it, too…much slower than you! Being from Minnesota…the temps were 90 degrees hotter than my long runs here. I was so grateful to have just finished!

  10. 10

    Love love love it! Congrats on a great finish and a great race! Even though you had some bad issues throughout, you toughed it out and powered through! Inspiration! I haven’t had bad tummy issues in a race yet (knocking on all wood), but I had bad back issues (I have a bulged disc). Not fun, some of the worst pain I’ve been in, and couldn’t walk the next day because my back was so bad, but at the finish line I was already planning my next race. Ha!

  11. 11
    Ryan says:

    Great job! I passed you around mile 19ish and thought I might make my goal time (I felt like you were hurting and I was too!) and then as I was one of the endless cramping along the side of the road, you guys zipped by. Great job gutting out a tough finish! That was suprisngly brutal for such an awesome course and location.

  12. 12
    Nicole says:

    Great post!! Congrats on another finish! How many marathons have you done so far?

    My worst running performance was the Long Beach marathon in 2012….humbling! Tummy troubles, not conditioned to run that distance, a variety of “not-in-the-game-mentally” reasons. I finished in something like 4:21 (I think I’ve mentally blocked it). My goal now is to get my marathon time back into the 3:40′s, hopefully dropping down to BQ pace….that’s my big racing goal! :)

    Hope you are enjoying the time back with your men!! Can’t wait to see a pic. of them in the “My Mom is faster than your Mom” shirts!

  13. 13

    Congrats on another race! I had a terrible race this weekend too… I REALLY wanted to break 2, and I was far from it at 2:04… Sigh. I liked the “bank deposit” advice.. that was much needed. I’ve been having quite the pity party.

  14. 14
    Elena says:

    Congrats! Sounds like an amazing weekend except for the tummy troubles. I still envy your time :)

    My worst race ever was Dam to Dam 20K in Iowa June 2011. It was SO HOT – I felt terrible, I walked a lot and my time was awful. I saw a lot of people on the side of the race in med tents, etc. I heard even some peed blood so I guess my experience wasn’t as bad as theirs!

  15. 15

    I think we have all had less than ideal races! Especially long ones where so much of it is about how you are feeling that particular day, nutrition, rest, taper, whats going on inside your head. There is so much more to racing than the actual training! Last year I had a terrible race at the Half Ironman World Championships, it was heartbreaking because you put in so much and sometimes it just does’t come together perfect on race day. But one race is just like 1% of the sport right? If you focus on how bad that 1% is you become quite the pessimist. Plus the bad races make us stronger and teach us a thing or two (:

  16. 16
    Denise says:

    You struggled???? I would kill for a marathon time like that :) ….. Be proud! You did great! And the VIP experience sounds pretty awesome, I need to start a blog so I can be invited too :) Congrats on completing another marathon. Now relax and enjoy your nutribullet!!

  17. 17
    Liz A says:

    I think you did awesome! So proud of you, what an amazing weekend! Honestly at almost 7 months pregnant, I just miss running (I tried to run with Bella in the jogger on Sunday and ended up walking since it was so uncomfortable). I even dream about running! So I’ll just live vicariously through your posts till I can run again!

  18. 18
    Kim says:

    Sorry it wasn’t the race you hoped for – great job finishing and still smiling!

  19. 19
    Sandy says:

    Sorry you did not feel well. It seemed to be a not so great day for lots of people. It looks like you had a great time with lots of great people and still finished with a very respectable time in spite of the tummy trouble. Congratulations!

  20. 20

    So funny about the purple potato message! Congrats on the finish!

  21. 21

    LOVE the pics!!! Hey, it was so warm for a marathon – figures after our cold weekend prior – It is the memories wit friends that count! Love the smiles!

Trackbacks

  1. [...] Stuft Mama blogger shares all of the details of running the ASICS LA Marathon in 3:35:22. Only Kristin would get her name on the race message board with encouragement to run like she’s running for the last purple potato! [...]

  2. [...] long run where I felt okay to shake off the ASICS LA Marathon thing. That was my first race where I struggled that much and had to walk, etc. and as much as I’ve been trying to shake it off and not analyze it too [...]

  3. [...] Start line arch – almost all the mile markers were like this! (Pic courtesy of Kristin) [...]

  4. [...] know, after I had such a tough marathon in March, I had some doubts about what I could do. Well, the past two weeks have helped me kick those doubts [...]

  5. [...] heading out I had to stop and thank Josh Cox for the pep talk he gave us after the tough time we had at the LA Marathon about all races being deposits in the bank. I still [...]

  6. [...] a training plan that Coach Kastor wrote up for those of us that were on the blogging team for the ASICS La Marathon a couple years ago. I didn’t get any speedwork in this week, but I did get some good mileage in [...]

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