Marathon #3 – Livestrong Austin Marathon – 2/17/13


Marathon #3 / Overall #3
Livestrong Austin Marathon
Austin, TX

This was the third marathon and about 1 year into running…

So it turned out that Alex was running the Austin Marathon after all. And for a good majority of the time he had been training with Kate. His secret? 5-8 mile long tempo runs, but keeping the same consistent pace. And their usual loop consists of a run starting at the medical center by Wurzbach and Babcock, going down Wurzbach and turning into Evers, and coming back on Huebner. Perhaps I’m just a novice, but I am surprised at how low their mileage was! The key, as Alex had mentioned, was that they HAVE to maintain a constant pace whether it’s an uphill or downhill. That may qualify as a lactate threshold run… lol.

The day before the race

Alex and I drove up from San Antonio on Saturday afternoon, of course there were horrendous traffic on I-35 north lol. When we arrived to the convention center, I didn’t even bother parking, and I asked if Alex can go and grab my packet for me. Surely enough, that was ok with my form of ID.

The compression shorts that you see above were NOT from the expo lol… We happened to be driving by a local running and cycling store near the convention center and stopped by.

Later on, we met with a group of people (including my other friends Jennie and Sherrie who is doing the half) for dinner. Gotta love carb loading before the race lol..

Race Morning

So the week before, I decided to do the Get Up and Train half marathon in Pharr, and when I met my friends on the RuNsane Running team. Nobody on that team had ever ran a marathon before (except for me), and I dedicated this marathon to the team. Alex was also ready to go, as he had been training with “Kate” whom none of us have yet to meet… lol.

This was the first marathon that I had ran with a ukulele, as well as other miscellaneous accessories that were on sale after Valentine’s Day (2/14). This included a teddy bear, red decorative garland, and the two RuNsane Running signs… lol.

At the start line

The start line is located right behind the State Capitol near 15th street and the north side of Congress Ave. The weather had been perfect, with temperature in the low 50’s and the skies were clear with a slight cold front. Compared to last week’s half marathon, which starting temperatures were in the mid 80’s and went up to 90’s and people dropping like flies… lol.

Start through South Congress Ave (mile 1-5)

There were several small hills as everyone left downtown Austin. Then, the rest of the first few southbound miles were a steady incline rolling uphill. Oh yeah, we could feel it. I decided to go about run-walking as usual.

South 1st St (mile 5-7)

This part was pretty fun. We made a turn back onto S 1st St after US 290, and the remainder of the way back to downtown was a downhill!  I did have to stop and take a leak on the side of a fence around mile 6… lol. 1st St was your typical hipster south Austin part of town. But since it was a Sunday morning, most everything were closed.

South 1st Ave into downtown (mile 7-9)

I ran into one of our heme path fellow’s wife along the course as well as Steve himself. Yes, I knew they were gonna be there so it wasn’t a surprise lol. What goes up must come down… so these last few miles were especially steep coming down…

West on Cesar Chavez Blvd (mile 9-10)

In response to the “ain’t nobody got time for that!!” viral YouTube video… this was pretty funny. We went on Cesar Chavez Blvd and made our way towards Enfield. Cesar Chavez was pretty flat, but when we started going north then westbound, the hills started to kick in…

The full/half split point (mile 10-11)

The full and the half split right at 15th street. The full course turned left onto Enfield, and the half course turned right to 15th. Supposedly they’re gonna encounter a MONSTER hill before finishing… lol.

Enfield/Exposition rolling hills (mile 11-13)

Enfield and Exposition were two streets that had some serious rollers… I meant up and down, up and down, up and down nonstop for at least several miles! I could feel the hurt…

Northbound along Shoal Creek (mile 14-18)

Honestly these few miles were such a blur. I think they were a little bit less hilly, but nonetheless it felt pretty bad.

I remembered two of our hematology lab techs were running Austin this weekend. I didn’t get a chance to run into Hector, but here was Alfonso. He said he was hurting, and this was around mile 18 when I passed him.

Return-bound (mile 19-25)

Okay… so at my last marathon in Dallas in December, I took 6 shots of beer which helped with my knee pain and the rest of the 6 miles were just like going through la-la land lol. Surely enough at mile 20 ish, there was a beer station (not official…) and my hamstrings had been cramping up, so I took a few shots, and I ditched walk breaks and started to just run. After all, the last 6 miles were downhill-ish… sort of.

The finish

They had to put that ugly little hill at the end as we approached downtown!! But I finished with a finish time of 5:08 something… which was like 1 minute off my first marathon… it was a weak sauce PR but nonetheless one. LOL.

First marathon ran with a ukulele COMPLETE.. Afterwards, a friend of mine picked me up and we went to Salt Lick BBQ and pigged OUT…. lol.

In summary, this was not an easy race. It was fun, but very hilly. Nonetheless, my friend Alex got a PR on his marathon while following Kate the entire time. Haha… And on Tuesday, when I went back to work, I was showing my medals to Alfonso and Hector in our hematology lab and proudly wearing them all.



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