This year the KDF would be my second time running the race… and it would also come just 6 days after NOLA 70.3. I wasn’t sure how well I would do with still having a little bit of fatigue in my legs from the previous weekend, but I thought it would be a fun race to do since it is in my backyard.
On Wednesday before the race, a random cold sore showed up on my lip. I was really confused to why it happened to pop up since I wasn’t sick, or even feeling a little under the weather. However, Friday evening while I was at our Good Friday Service, I started feeling a little congested and a sore throat. Now the cold sore made sense! But, the timing to finding out why wasn’t the greatest. I was hoping that I wouldn’t feel horrible in the morning and still be able to have a respectable race. I didn’t sleep great the night of the race, but it could have been worse.
I woke up with a little more congestion and my throat was just a little more sore than the night before. I felt good enough to race and decided to give it what I had.
I started the race in the A corral. Not sure why I didn’t in the elite corral, but I didn’t really care. I knew I could get really close to the front of the line regardless.
The start gun went off and I started out with a 5:22 mile and then settled into pace for the rest of the marathon. By mile 4, I knew my goal time of a 2:35 wasn’t going to happen. I didn’t have the energy I needed from being sick. I actually contemplated just doing the mini marathon, but I felt like that would be “quitting” for no good reason, and didn’t want anything to do with that.
Just before the mini marathoner and the full marathoners split, we run into the Church Hill Downs, home to “the most exciting two minutes in sports.” It’s always kind of fun running around the in field that in just a couple weeks will be crowded with people watching the first leg of the Triple Crown Races. We then exited the stadium and headed for Iroquois Park, the hilliest section of the race (and probably all of Louisville).
Once getting to the park, I backed down the effort a little bit for the 3 miles through the park. I didn’t want to push that section too hard and then pay for it in the final miles of the race. Once we exited the park, we got back on Southern Parkway and met runners making their way to the park. This part of the race is nice, a little bit of company to be had. A few “good jobs” were tossed back and forth to/from the people I knew for the next few miles. Then, about mile 17, I joined back into the group of mini marathoners.
For the next few miles, I had to bob and weave quite a bit to work my way through the crowd. Getting to the aid stations was a bit a challenge since they were on the left side of the street and I was on the right side of the street. I had to cross about 4 lanes of road/runners, grab my own drinks, and then zig-zagged back to the right hand side of the road where the least amount of dodging was required to make forward progress. I made a conscious effort to drink a lot of fluids during this race in comparison to last year since I felt that hydration was reason I didn’t close out the last 4 miles well… and it was a lot warmer this year.
Mile 21 came and that meant I finally was able to split from the mini marathoners again and have open road. Still no signs of hitting the wall and struggling the last four miles like last year. However, my slowest mile did some from mile 22-23, but it was mostly uphill. I kept drinking water and taking small sips from the flask of Napalm (Infinit’s version of an energy gel) I carried during the entire race. I felt good (relatively speaking) and closed off the last three miles with all of them just being a few seconds over 6 min miles. No bonking this year!
I finished 7th over all and about a minute slower than last year, but I’m still happy with it. Considering I was sick, raced a 70.3 the weekend before, and it being much warmer this year, I think I put together a good race.
Equipment/Nutrition during the race:
Newton MV3 running shoes
Napalm Highly Caffeinated (www.infinitnutrition.com) – use code “maverick” at checkout to save 10%
Salt Stick Electrolyte pills
Champion System Tri Kit
I also want to give a big thank you to Maverick Multisport for pulling all these sponsors together to help make training and racing possible. And a big thank you to Vibra Healthcare for sponsoring me this year. Without their support, I wouldn’t be able to race or train as much as I would like.
Also, I want to give a shout out to my wife and all my in-laws for doing the mini marathon this year. It was a great to exchange stories after the race. Huge congrats to all of them!