Monday, June 12, 2006

The Old Man and the Sea

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Magic hour and a staggeringly beautiful sunset will make even the crustiest old curmudgeon look scrumptious. Hence a Vince with the look of a grizzled young Spencer Tracy...

Kudos to the lens work of Mr. Callison who captured yours truly on the deck of the Queen of Cowichan on the homeward bound leg of the journey to Tofino and Ucluelet.

The Edge to Edge Marathon this weekend was a little hillier and a little more rugged than we expected, but we all survived.

We did the course in a time of roughly 4:50, a time determined by a rev-limited heart rate average of 131 - or exactly 65% of maximum heart rate for moi. Took tremendous discipline not to speed up.

I think even Lance Armstrong would have been proud of that kind of committment to building an aerobic base. Patrick didn't get much over 60% and Justin was fighting off a cold after spending the preceding Saturday in the Chesterton Beach rollers on a surfboard. That didn't stop Justin from whipping up a pasta feast for a dozen people though!

At the end, particularly over the last two miles, we just wanted it over with. The volunteers were beyond amazing. They really threw themselves into the spirit of the event. More pictures to follow. The aide stations were all decorated and the staff - simply great!

Only surprise - imagine this if you will, that after running for five hours on the course - we finished to find that there was no food left. Zero. Zilch. Nada. Not a crumb to be had. Arrrggghhhh!

It marred a great event. It's the kind of screw up that it is totally and completely unacceptable. Marathons are about the runners. If you run out of food or water, the rest of your organizational skills are moot - because you have screwed the pooch. There is no way you shouldn't have a few bagels waiting for every runner in the course. When the last runner has finished, use any left over food to feed the volunteers!

One of the volunteer staff immediately went to the store and bought more oranges, bananas and cookies. Have to like their committment. They saw a need and they filled it. Initiative, ingenuity and improvisation in the field.

Note to the Vancouver Marathon. How is it that a little course like the Edge to Edge Marathon in Tofino and Ucluelet - with a hundred odd people in the marathon - can blow you away when it comes to organization AND A TECHNICAL SHIRT!!!!

Honest to God, it's true. A fabulous long-sleeve black New Balance Edge to Edge Marathon technical fibre shirt with a beautiful SCREEN-PRINTED LOGO!

Once again the Vancouver Marathon organizers should be ashamed of themselves.

A weekend filled with good company, good food and good times.


Anonymous kelly said...

yes, definitely scrumptious.

9:04:00 AM  
Blogger Joe said...

> When the last runner has
> finished, use them to
> feed the volunteers!

Wow! Isn't that sort of a cruel and unusual punishment for finishing in last place? Call me crazy but I'm against cannibalism in any form.

Hey Vince, are you going in the Scotiabank Half Marathon on June 25? I wanted to pick your brain for tips.

10:05:00 AM  
Blogger Vince Hemingson said...

Hi Joe,

I would normally be there with bells on, but I'll be up in Smithers that weekend for another Marathon!

Cheers, Vince

12:45:00 PM  
Blogger Anthony Epp said...

It's a great race! Congrats to all of you.

How many marathons you looking to do, sir?

2:18:00 PM  
Blogger Anthony Epp said...

meaning, of course, how many do you plan to do this SUMMER?

2:18:00 PM  
Blogger Joe said...

Aw man. Well, maybe I'll see you down at Summerfast in July. Good luck in Smithers.

Anyway, there are water/gatorade stations every 3K in the Scotiabank half. Based on my recent 5K and 10K race times and my latest long run time, my predicted finishing time is somewhere between 1:38 and 1:43. I've been experimenting with gel on my long runs and I believe it has helped. I use gatorade on my long swims and I think it has helped. My question is, how often would you refuel/rehydrate and what would you consume?

I was thinking of taking one gel with water at 12K and taking just gatorade at 6K, 9K, 15K and 18K.

2:53:00 PM  
Blogger Vince Hemingson said...

It will be at least seven and maybe eight marathons this year, plus two Ultramarathons, 50K and 64K.

3:06:00 PM  
Blogger Vince Hemingson said...

Joe, honestly you have zero need to gel for a Half Marathon if you are finishing in a time under two hours.

You will have more than adequate glucose stores to run 13 miles.

In fact, you shouldn't need more than one or two Gatorade shots to do much more than wet your whistle.

You just need to run the race at a pace just below your lactate threshold.

If your runs go PAST two hours, you need to start preparing your body by refueling at the one hour mark.

Otherwise, if you are UNDER two hours, you have no real need.

3:11:00 PM  
Blogger Joe said...

Thanks for the advice Vince. I'll try taking just a couple of gatorade shots on my next long run to see how I feel.

BTW, someone from the RBF just posted this comment on my blog:

hey joe-
you might be interested in this:
technical custom made running shirts!!!

The key word is "technical". I have used to make a custom "after race" shirt but they only have cotton ones. I have been searching all over to find a place that makes custom technical shirts with no minimum order quantity and no set up charges.

You can make a "Boston or Bust" technical shirt to promote your blog. They even have a Running Blog Family logo you can add to it.

3:29:00 PM  

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