Monday, May 28, 2012

Part 1 Wisconsin/Kalamazoo Marathon Double Weekend May 5-6

Back-to-back: Handful of Kalamazoo Marathon runners to compete in Wisconsin Marathon the day before

After getting in to the the Kalamazoo Marathon for "free" under their 50 state challenge, I decided to add on the Wisconsin Marathon to make it a double marathon weekend to aid in my Vermont 100 training. The 50 state challenge was a partnership with New Balance to provide both a free pair of shoes to the first person from each state to register for the marathon, along with the race entry fee being reimbursed by check issued at the race expo. HH was back up on call for work for the weekend, so he was unable to enjoy the *cough* fun weekend of spectating.

Part 1, the Wisconsin Marathon, "America's Cheesiest Marathon."
May 5, 2012
Kenosha, WI

I hosted a marathon maniac from Florida the night before the race. It is in Kenosha, WI, about 1 hour south of Milwaukee. We had some nice carbo loading at Via near UW-Milwaukee and in bed by 10pm. The first of two important discoveries was that the Trigger Point rollers are amazing and the next step in injury prevention. They are smaller than foam rollers and can target spots that you can't get to with the foam rollers. The second discovery came at the end of the weekend.

The morning of the race we of course looked at the doppler radar and the rain line was just south of Kenosha. Phew! Dodged a bullet there. Of course, that meant it started raining hard about 30 minutes North of the race location on up to about 30 minutes before the start of the race. I opted to stay in my dry car until the last minute, finishing up the 'ole morning coffee and pre-race scone from Panera, but missed the Marathon Maniac photo.

The course is a North then South out and back, starting near downtown along with the half marathoners, going North for 1/4 of the marathon, turning back to town, "dropping off" the half marathoners where we had started, then continuing South for a similar course. The rain had stopped but low clouds and a very light drizzle remained. I saw some runners from my Meetup group just before they finished their half marathon. I also saw Larry Macon I think just after the half way point, he was running in Rhode Island the next day! He is my example whenever people tell me that they are "too old" to run.

I enjoyed the sections on the gravel roads on the second half of the race, and as usual, enjoyed chatting with people from all over. I even ran into a pair of ladies that run marathons together from Texas that I had last seen at Mount Desert Island Marathon in October 2010!!! I love that!

Two Maniacs from Texas (Photo: Dave Mari)

Finished the race in about 4 hours 17 minutes. Enjoyed a brat and mountain dew at the after party but quickly headed out on the 1 mile walk to my car to get to Kalamazoo before the expo closed (had to pass from Central to Eastern time, losing 1 hour) and to get warm. It took me an hour with the heat blaring in the car but I eventually felt comfortable. The key here is that I had various liquids ready to go (water, gatorade, ensure) to hydrate enroute. I had to stop 3 times in total, but this aided tremendously in quick recovery and feeling good the next day.

At the expo in Kalamazoo, I ran into Steve and Paula Boone, the lead folks at the 50 States Marathon Club, and they invited me to join them at the pasta dinner downstairs. I think it was $15 and it was very good food catered by the hotel, great company as well.

Heading back to my hotel for the night, I saw prom kids downtown and then another group at the hotel, where their prom was being hosted. They all looked great and outfits amazingly coordinated. Luckily I couldn't hear their music, and after a quick soak in the hot tub to loosen up, I was in bed early.

Next post: Part 2 - Kalamazoo Marathon

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