written by runnergirl training
I ran the Dallas Marathon on December 9, 2012. It was my third Dallas Marathon, formally called the Dallas White Rock Marathon.
I had been training for months for the race. I used the Hal Higdon Intermediate 2 marathon program. My goal time was 4:30.
I have been in school full time for nursing school prerequisites and taking care of my mom with stage 4 brain melanoma. Around my obligations this semester I was maintaining a training volume of 70-90 miles per week. I was adding onto the Hal Higdon program, it did not require that weekly mileage. Running is my escape and way to stay sane through all of the stress.
The race course changed this year and acquired a lot more hills in the front half. The back half retained a lot of the previous race course.
During the race I hydrated with Gatorade, Gatorade Energy Chews, Clif Bar Shot Bloks and water. I drank 6 ounces or ate 2 chews about every 15-20 minutes. I used the portable restroom around mile 17.
I started out with the 4:15 pace group from miles 1-3. Then I joined the 4:30 pace group from miles 4-14. Midway through mile 14 the damage from the hills affected my muscles I was unable to keep my pace and started walking until mile 15. From mile 15 until the end my legs (quads & hamstrings) felt like Icy Hot was on them and had sharp painful cramps. I was able to hobble run and drafted behind a few runners to reach that finish line!
At the end of the race I visited the medical area at the Dallas Convention Center. I was such pain that I could not stop walking or moving my legs because the pain was too intense to stop. The nurses and doctor laid me on a cot and massaged my legs for an hour. I was finally able to stand up with their assistance and left with my family.
I was unable to walk for the next 2 days after the race. I have never experienced such intense and painful muscle cramps and spasms. I have consulted with several sports medicine gurus and my conclusion is the cramps results from the excessive hills in the first half of the race and the high humidity.
I have been a runner since 1997. Racing has been a passion of mine since 2000. I am always learning new aspects of the sport and ways to improve! Thank you for joining me in my race reflections!