Published July 3rd, 2010
It really shouldn’t have happened. I’m sure most people thought I was crazy to even THINK it could happen. BQ six weeks after running a 50-miler? Using a 50K as my last long run before my goal race? Coaxing a sub 4-hour out of my aging body at my 20th marathon for the YEAR? That’s crack-smoking talk.
Yet thanks to strategic planning, an impromptu encounter with an elite runner and favorable weather conditions, I managed to smash my goal with nary a toke on the ol’ crack pipe, finishing the 2010 Seattle Rock ‘n Roll Marathon in 3:55:41.
Upon returning from Beantown this year I began to set my sights on next year. There’s something about being around such speedy runners that gets me motivated. However, I assumed Boston would sell out even earlier this year, which might make a fall race moot. Given I’d be running the Rainier to Ruston 50-mile on June 5, I didn’t think I’d be recovered in time to try at Seattle Rock ‘n Roll. Missoula was two weeks later; still not ideal, but at least it’d give me more recovery time. And if I didn’t succeed, no big deal. After all, my darling still hadn’t BQ’d, and I wouldn’t have wanted to drag him back again if I were the only one to race.
All that changed on May 2 when he ran a 3:18:28 at the Tacoma City Marathon.
As with my race, the odds of him BQing that day were slim. It’s a particularly hilly course, plus it was his 18th race in so many weeks. But if anyone has the grit and stubborn determination (along with a bit of dumb luck), it’s my hubby. Now the pressure was on.
As we were milling around in the recovery area one of my Maniac friends asked me about my goal for the Redmond Watershed 12-hour two weeks later. I had hoped to get in 35-40 miles as my last long run before Rainier to Ruston, but she wondered why I wouldn’t go for 50. It wasn’t as if I wasn’t ready; if I could run 13 marathons/50Ks in 12 weeks, I could certainly run a 50-miler, especially in 12 hours.
The gears in my head started spinning — what if I ran 50 miles there instead and switched to the 50K option for Rainier to Ruston; could I possibly get into BQ shape for Seattle Rock ‘n Roll? That race was preferable since I knew it, plus Missoula can get quite hot. I figured it wouldn’t hurt to try.