Sunday, November 25, 2007

Never underestimate running with a man in his 50's!

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Alarm goes off at 5:15 am... I am so ready to run! Only a 2 hour run (piece of cake compared to 2:30 hour runs). After reading about Lana training for her marathon in such cold weather that her ponytail froze, and my friend Shirley about to do her marathon next weekend after SO MUCH racing & travel this season she is ready for some well deserved time off, and RG who is running a marathon next weekend and is as crazy as me that she runs when she should be sleeping! I felt super motivated! It is warm here in Hawaii (I am taking salt still this time of year) and these 3 womens' marathon training adventures have been so encouraging I could hardly wait to start my run! Or so I thought...

As I get to my take off point I see Dan Hodel. He is in his 50's but can EASILY run a sub 3hr marathon. He has been a runner all his life and still beats the men half his age when it comes to running! Knowing he is also running Honolulu Marathon on the 9th I shyly ask him how long he is running. He tells me to the pit and back and 1x up KAM3. Hmmm... It usually takes me just under 2 hrs to run to the pit and back, I am going to run with him! I kind of invite myself. Secretly I am a bit nervous because my plan was to do 40 min. zone 1, 40 min. zone 2, and 40 min. at marathon goal pace. We get going and instantly I am THINKING his plan must be to run the entire time AT GOAL PACE! We are cruising pretty good from the get-go.

Then he starts to tell me about how great it would be if our town had more run races... for example a 30k today (2weeks out from the marathon) as a sort of "tune-up"race. NOW I am VERY scared... I think we are making our own 30k "tune-up" race right now because I am at what could be race pace! At mile 3 I decide to check the pace 6:55. Oh Bree, hold on I tell myself. Maybe it will be good to run at near race pace for 2 hours- I have never done it but today I might try it thanks to running with Dan...

Mile 5-9 we are about 7-7:05 min. pace. I make sure I am taking my gels and drinking... I check my technique, I try to keep good conversation, I pretend I am in the race since I am darn near race pace, and I remain calm... SHOOT I am running with Dan Hodel... all of Kona admires him for his running! I hope other morning joggers notice I am running with Dan Hodel. It is sort of an honor to run with someone you admire.

Okay, now to this hill. KAM 3. We do about a mile up it then turn down. NOW my quads are on fire! Dan tells me "This is great! it mimics the feeling you get around mile 18 or 19 of the marathon". GREAT I think! But I am loving every mile of this run. I like to challenge myself and I LOVE running with stronger runners. I am in sort of a bitter-sweet spot with this run. I love the fact it is a great workout and good for the bank ( I can hardly wait to withdraw on race day knowing this is in the bank) and at the same time I think my legs are pooped and I just want to finish this run with Dan.

With about 4 miles to go I tell Dan I am so happy I got to run with him, that this was a great run, and that I did not plan on running this strong, I was planning on something easier-but am glad I ran with him & did that hill! He then tells me he also was NOT planning on running that strong this morning. He was planning on the hill (he always does hills) but was just going to cruise. When we finish he tells me it would have taken him another 30 minutes to finish what we did in 2:16!!!

As we stretch out in the parking lot I am so proud I accomplished that run. I am even more proud to see my nutrition plan is working wonders! But I am most proud that when the going got tough I could keep on going all because of who I was running with.


Anonymous said...

Just my luck, MY alarm went off at 5 too. It’s still kinda dark at 6 as I get to the parking lot and get ready for a nice tapering 18 miler, but suddenly this other car pulls up and “Hi, Dan,” oh no, it’s Bree. She’s been eating my lunch all year whenever we’ve raced and last time I ran with her, before her pregnancy, before she got faster, even THAT was hard on the oldster.
And of course she takes off like a woman possessed and I’ve got to keep up with her. (I’m the one with the short stride, running like a caged hamster to keep up, but no -- if you read her account -- I’m pushing her. Right.) Good thing I was testing out my racing flats, or it would have been manslaughter, plain and simple.
Of course, fool that I am, I mention the little out-and-back side-trip I like to do on Kam III and now we’re on it. And there’s this good cyclist ahead of us on the opposite shoulder and -- if you know Bree you’ve already figured this part out -- suddenly Bree has her sights locked in on the cyclist and we’re closing the gap as she chases him, and drags me, up this 7-10 percent grade for over a mile. If the hill hadn’t leveled out, she would have caught him too.
So you do the math, and then I’ll rest my case (and my weary body). Last week I did the same course, plus about 5 hilly miles. It took a full hour longer. So, if you’ll pardon the expression: who was zooming whom this morning?
Great to run with you, Bree. See you over in Honolulu. Probably from behind. Until you disappear into the distance.

BreeWee said...

That is too funny! I LOVE it! All 26.2 miles in Honolulu I will pretend to be running with you... and laughing... and smiling...and of course cheering for you!

Recover well :)

kerrie said...

that's too funny - I admire both of you getting up so early to get that run in! I would have kept sleeping - I am so much that dork that is running at 9 or 10 at night once everyone is in bed(but without my visor, lol). I am so jealous that still have hot weather though to run in...I miss sweating ;).

Anonymous said...

Bree & Dan: You guys are too much! Keep it up and gobs of good luck for Honolulu! :-)


ShirleyPerly said...

Awesome run! I too have been "tricked" into running harder than I planned when someone came up alongside me in Kona. Never on Kam III though -- WOW. You are going to kick butt at Honolulu!!