27 October, 2008

Niagara Falls

Hi Everyone,

Thanks for all your comments and good wishes. Today i finished the Niagara Falls Marathon in about 3:56. After Chicago was very happy with that. The weather was almost perfect - very cool and sunny for the most part but very windy. the wind came from all directions. it was a picturesque course. Staring in Buffalo, crossing the Peace Bridge into Canada and then along the Niagara River and finishing at the Falls.

I ran the whole race, no walking, but took it very easy with next week's New York Marathon in mind. My left leg was still sore and stiff and my feet hurt a lot but i was very happy with the result.

The holiday has been terrific. We have been staying in Barrie, a town about half an hour from Toronto. We have spent some time in wilderness country but haven't seen any bears or moose.
I experienced my first snow. Snow fell all day for one day and covered everything. By the following evening it had all melted.

Our hotel room in Niagara looks out over the falls. Awesome!

We will spend some time in Toronto on Monday and fly out to NY on Wednesday. Very exciting.

Bye for now.


15 October, 2008

In Chicago

Hi Everyone,

Here I am in Chicago. It seems like a lifetime ago since I left home on my big adventure. Our plane was delayed in Brisbane and we only just made our connection in Sydney by running. After a 13.5 hr uneventful flight we made it to San Francisco at 10:15 AM on Wenesday, almost 2hrs before we left Brisbane. Our luggage didn't make it to the plane and didn't arrive until the following evening. Wednesday ws the longest day of my life. By sheer will power we stayed awake until 8;30 Wednesday night US West Coast time ( had about 3 hours sleep on the plane).

SF was great. We had a great time at Fisherman's wharf, walking up Lombard St, riding the Cable Car down the hill and visiting Alcatraz where we tried to leave Gidget (Michelle) in a cell.

Friday was taken up with travelling to Chicago and registering for the marathon. We booked into the Palmer House Hilton where we have a very good room on the 19th floor. While lying on my bed I can look out the window to Lake Michigan. We are very lucky.

Saturday saw us back at the Marathon Expo which was huge - nothing like it in Australia. We rested on Saturday afternoon. I was drinking lots of water to keep hydrated for the marathon.

Sunday morning we rose at 5:45 and headed for the Marathon at 7:45. We were only about 5 minutes from the start. It was quite warm even at that stage. the Race began at 8:00 with over 33,000 starters. I didn't feel too bad though my left hamstring had been a bit sore. I maintained a steady 5:00min per K pace for the first 10k but I new somehting was wrong when I was thirsty before the first water stop. I was drinking lots at each water station, and there were plenty of them, but dehydration was already a problem for me and my hammy was really acting up. I got slower and slower and had to start doing some walking. I finished the first half in 1hr 48 mins, my slowest ever. I gradually got worse and worse and the temperature was climbing. Many people had started walking by this stage. It was ah horror marathon for me and the finish couldn't come quick enough. I felt shocking. I tried running but would just have to give it away.

I finished in 4:38, but I did finish and I got my finishers medal. Gidget finished in 6: 15 and Darryl about 20 minutes later. Absolutely fantabulous efforts on their parts. Gidget ran the whole first half and Darryl ran the first 12k and walked most of the way from there. Congratualtions Darryl and Gidget.

The organisation of the event was amazing. Everything ran like clockwork. The volunteers did a tremendous job. At least 80% of the course was lined with people cheering us on. At the finishing line some friends and relatives were waiting for their loved ones with bunches of flowers.

We spent Monday recouperating and had massage this morning then went to Navy Pier and had lunch at the Hard Rock Cafe. Tomorrow we head for Pittsburgh to spend some time with Darryl's rellies. I have to get myself in to nick for the niagara Falls Marathon which I will be taking very easily.

Bye for now,

06 October, 2008

Ready, Set, Go.

The big adventure starts on Wednesday. We head to Sydney then straight to San Francisco. Next Sunday is the Chicago Marathon. My bib number is 2039.

Yesterday I went to West End and ran a 10k at the Brisbane Road Rrunners Club. It was great to catch up with Tesso and Clairie at long last. Clairie did 20K yesterday but I was not able to stay for her finish. She was doing pretty well when on the occasions I saw her. It was also good to catch up wit other Coolrunners too. It was good to meet you Funrunner.

Craig came along to the club and did the 10K also. He really enjoyed it and has signed up as a member. Craig is doing the Half in Melbourne next Sunday.

I have been saving the big news till last. Yesterday Tigger finished the 62K Tambourine Mountain run in 7Hrs 14Mins to be the 2nd female across the line. Congratulations Tigger. What a terrific effort. It was a hot and humid day as well. When I spoke to her during the afternoon after the race she sounde bright an chirpy, not spent and exhausted.

My next post will be from the US, probably Chicago.