Micah Grenz from Brookings, SD (Male)
Occupation: College Athletics
Age on race day: 31
2007 Twin Cities Marathon - Mpls/St Paul, MN
This was my 9th marathon and I finished in 3:19:51.
I consider myself an intermediate runner and I primarily run for stress relief. Having played soccer in high school and college, I had always done some level of distance running. After college, I met some friends that did longer races and realized that if added a couple miles here and there throughout, I could run with them. Over the years, my training has gotten me through many good and bad times in life. I don't listen to music when I run, but instead use the time to think about my wife and kids, solve work problems, or just relax. Hopefully this has made me a better person, employee, and most importantly, father and husband.
In the spring of '07, Runner's World surveyed a number of "experts" and published a training program based on their feedback. This was the first time I have followed a set schedule and it was very beneficial for me. Many days, the program was my motivator to get out of bed. I trained for 4 months, and I averaged 70 miles per week.
The best advice I heard while training this time around was to rest up before the hard workouts so I could get more out of them. Early on, I would try to squeeze in a couple slow miles the night before a morning speed session, but that only reduced the quality of the miles that I ran the following day.
The 2007 Twin Cities Marathon was worse than expected. Race day was very warm, with some people commenting that they were sweating on the walk to the Metrodome. I knew my training had gone well and I felt good so I decided to stick with my race day goal, rather than slow the pace. I was exactly on pace when I hit the halfway point and a little ahead of pace at mile 19. Somewhere between mile 19 and mile 20, my body just stopped. I didn't really hurt and my breathing was fine, I just couldn't run. I ran-walked the rest of the race, but was able to pick up some people that were also struggling.
I didn't have any recovery problems. I stretched for a while once I arrived at the finishing area. Following the 4 hour drive home, I stretched again that night and a couple a times a day for the next few days. I also rode bike for 45-50 each day that week. My quads were still a little sore, so I would massage them by rolling a golf ball on the tender spots.
Running Gear Recommendations:
Adidas Supernova Shoes I have been going with Nike shoes lately, and they work fine. As I thought back to some of my favorite races, they were all run in older version of the Supernova. I got a new pair about a month out from the race and they were great. Search » Search on Amazon »
Race Belt This is an elastic belt that goes around your waist and allows you to clip your race number there rather than pinning it on your shirt/shorts. This eliminates any chance of getting rust stains on the shirt from the sweat/cheap safety pin combination and also allows you to move the number to the side or back when facing windy conditions. Search » Search on Amazon »
Clif Shot Bloks I tried gels one time and the result was not pretty. Clif makes these gummi squares that sit much better with me, and really do not need water to be eaten. I split a pouch in half and put each half in a sandwich bag so they are more manageable to access on race day. Cola and cherry make a tasty combination. Search » Search on Amazon »
Tips/Words of Encouragement:
A hot, disappointing day running is still better than sitting on the couch eating bon bons. Sorry to all you bon bon lovers out there!
Plans to Run Another:
I'm planning to continue to run marathons because I can.
I like what I did this time and know that I would have reached my goal if not for a very fluke stretch of hot weather. I will focus more on the things that I can control and not worry about the things that are out of my domain.