It wasn’t fun. The times tell a pretty accurate story – these are the times and speeds (time per mile) for the four quarters:
7.6 13.1 20.0 26.2
01:04:43 01:49:17 02:42:07 03:35:57
time per mile for each part:
8:31 8:06 7:39 8:41
So I started aiming for 8:30, and got it pretty accurate, then I felt good enough and was annoyed at the time I was doing that I started picking up the pace. Then after the first half I ran along a guy that was actually going quite faster then I was going before, hence the 7:40 a mile. Then I hit the wall. The last 6 miles were hellish. Well, that’s a little too far, but they constitute the “not fun” part, and the number says it all, 8:40 per mile. I picked up a little in the last mile, but nowhere near the pace I had before.
Overall I did a lot of planning mistakes, small idiotic ones, like not wearing gloves, putting my gels in a zippered pouch on my waist belt, not running with the waist belt before the contest, not checking the weather (sleeveless shirt, no), getting there way too early (half an hour would have been fine. again, cold + sleeveless shirt).
Other stuff I need to learn – eating immediately after the contest (apparently there is a half hour where your body will accept protein for your broken down muscles much more quickly then normal), and mainly keeping the pace.
To summarize, haven’t decided yet when / if I’m doing another marathon, but it was definitely an experience.
Some nice things about the SF marathon specifically: they had 12 water stations, that included some electrolyte drink and water. They had bands along the way, more concentrated near the finish, which was very cool. The coolest part was straight out of world of goo, they had signs along the climbs, and also pretty continuously in the last 6 miles, with fun facts and quotes about running and SF. (I was expecting them to be signed “the sign maker” but they probably didn’t play world of goo). Also some very nice people with fruits. Note: when your hands are cold, picking up an orange while running becomes harder.
Next: deciding what’s next. But that’s for another post.
Appendix: code for the calculations:
ts=[(h*60.0+m+s/60.0) for h,m,s in [(0,0,0), (1,4,43), (1,49,17), (2,42,7), (3,35,57)]]
ml=[0.0, 7.6, 13.1, 20.0, 26.2]
print ' '.join('%.1f' % x for x in ml)
print ' '.join(['%s:%02d' % (int(x), round((x-int(x))*60.0)) for x in [(ts[i+1]-ts[i])/(ml[i+1]-ml[i]) for i in xrange(len(ts)-1)]])
print ' '.join(['%02d:%02d:%02d' % ((t/60), t%60, round((t%60-int(t%60))*60)) for t in ts])