Always Happy Jason Race Report from the L.A. Marathon 2009
Always Happy Jason – Showing His Stuff Early in the LA Marathon
The night before the marathon is the time when I set up all my stuff for the morning. This is when I really know that I’m getting ready to run another marathon.
This is my 4th marathon and my first time writing about my experience at a marathon. I do wonder why it took me sometime to decide on doing a running blog. I guess I was not ready yet. I’m ready now. Here we go.
I woke up around 4:00 a.m. took a shower, and drank my Mega juice. I got all my gear and I was out the door. I was feeling pretty relaxed that morning. I was telling myself that this is going to be a great day for me to run another marathon. Boy…there were so many people up early, and at the starting line. I made sure to take a lot of pictures. I love taking pictures. It shows that you were there to experience this event and it feels good to smile. It was so cramped (that word is going to be important later) at the starting line. The horn went off and we where off on Figueroa. It was amazing the parade of people on the course, it was so awesome. While on the course I saw a gentlemen named Ed that I had seen running in my neighborhood. Before that I had seen him in San Pedro running so I introduced myself. It's a small world to see him in the L.A. Marathon with over 14,000 people. I was feeling pretty good. I was taking it slow not to go out to fast.
It was about after mile four that Coach Steve and another member of the Sole Runners saw me. It was so cool to see them. Steve ran with me for about mile and a half. We talked about how things were going and then he wanted to know my heart rate. It was around 162 bpm at the time. He told me to slow down. He suggested for me to keep my heart rate down around the 140-150 bpm range until 10:00 a.m., then see I how I felt. I took his advice and I’m grateful to have a great coach and a great friend to help me out. Thanks Coach Steve.
I continued to drink and check my Garmin to make sure I was in the target zone. So far so good. While I was on Venice Blvd. I saw some more Sole Runners that had come to cheer on the Marathoners. It was great to see them and kept my spirits up. Sole Runners…You guys are awesome!
I check my time and it was 10:30 a.m. My feeling at that time was so-so. The first half of the marathon was not too bad, but… (always a but) the second half was challenging. I believe at mile 15 or 16 I started feeling tight in my calf area. It was not feeling good at all. I was cramping up. This feeling has come up before but not this bad. I continued going on. One step at a time. Looking back now I should had stretched it out. I also believe that I should have drank more electrolytes. This was a learning experience for me. I worked on using my ChiWalking® for the rest of the Marathon. This helped a lot. The support at the water stations and on the course was amazing and greatly appreciated. That continued to help me to go on.
I was between mile 25 and 26 and I heard a runner tell me, ”Boy…you have a good walking pace.” Then we met in the final stretch of the race and his hands were on his knees. I came by him at told him, “You are almost there.” That helped him to continue. He told me that he signed up for this marathon on Saturday. He has done marathons before but this one he did not train at all for. I was amazed. His name was Carlos. I attempted to run the last .2 miles but my calves were still in pain.
I finished this L.A. Marathon (Yah) one minute faster than last year. The course was pretty good and the weather was great. I’m humble and thankful to have this time to share my experience on the marathon.
This marathon was dedicated to two people that I care about a lot. Pastor E.C. Carson and Ricardo Gordillo’s mom. Fight On. (LIVESTRONG).
AlwayshappyJason – Sole Runners and SoCalRunning.com member