Imagine A Marathon’s Personal Best

5kgeek runs LA Marathon 2011The 2011 running of the Los Angeles Marathon made headlines as the one of the wettest in its history. A new course record finish was set and a $100,000 dollar bonus was given to the winner. There was this 400 pound ex-wrestler that made it into the Guinness Book of Record as the heaviest ever to finish a marathon… to name a few stories that were written.

It was raining from start to finish. I have never seen so many finishers battling hypothermia at the end. It was cold at the finish line by Santa Monica Pier. I crossed the line with a 4:39:29 (net) from Dodger Stadium drenched, cold, sore and tired.

No cell phone at hand. I have to borrow a phone and call somebody home to pick me up (plan B for ride home in effect) while double wrapped in plastic sheet under a tree lining at the corner of Ocean and Santa Monica Blvd. There were a bunch of runners with me taking refuge this side of the finish line. You can see others all over the place in the same condition if not worst but there’s one thing in common – that look of accomplishment for finishing 26.2 miles in the rain.

There were plenty of help along the way like always. Supporters showed up despite the rain and gave encouragement, accommodation and anything runners needed that passes by. It was a very pleasant sight in a very challenging weather condition for sure. A big thanks to all. You guys did great.

My friends at Dailymile kept me going while in training. Many thanks to you all.

I trained for 18 weeks and I was hoping to improve on my personal best of 4:29:59 and had a goal to cross the finish line in  4 hrs and 15 minutes. I believed I can then here comes the rain…oh well.

I was disappointed to say the least but I was so happy despite my 4:39 finish.

The reason was, for the first time I finished the race without walking and ONLY stopped 5 times. That’ was a first for me in all of 6 marathons I was in.

Crossing the finish line with that in  mind was the best feeling ever!

Yes, I stopped for my recovery drink and ate my endurance cubes (both of which were part of my training) and stretched a little for about 60 to 90 seconds each time.

From mile 20 until the finish line, it was more of a  mental game. It was uncharted territory. I was tired of course but that was expected. However, I had an eye to break my personal best.

If you were running beside me those last six miles you’ll here me say, “I know  I Can…I Know I Can…I Can Do It…I Can Do It…No Stopping Now…No Quitting Now and on…sounds like a broken record but it worked”

Started high-fiving with the cheering crowd on both sides of the street every chance I have until I got to about the last mile and gave it all to the end. Amazingly, the human touch gave that needed boost in strength each time.

No $100,000 cash for me and no world record to brag about but a personal record – it was a personal best!

Imagine your marathon’s personal best. What is it going to be? If I can do it you can do it too and chances are you’ll do better than me –  rain or shine!

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