This race report is courtesy of super fast marathoner and owner of Bike Fix, Crystal Shockley. I do have to take a few sentences to add a little to her report, as she is extremely humble and you won’t get the whole story unless I add to it. Here is her report and I’ll add a paragraph at the end.
This race is very organized and a fast course. I was amazed by the results of the speed training that my coach Steph had me do. I have a Garmin that tells me all I need to know about my training, but until now I have never plugged it in to use it. My goal was to run a sub-3 hour marathon. I achieved my goal with these things: fast course, nutrition, coach Steph, workout plans, watch, and great friends to push me.
My nutrition was finally just right. I have gotten really sick after other races and so during training runs, I played around with different things until I found what worked for me. I used Carbo Rocket from Bike Fix to fuel right during the race. I carried it with me so I could get energy when I needed to. I loved not having to eat anything, just drink my calories. It was also a good idea for me to carry what I needed because a few of my friends who planned on getting their nutrition at the tables, couldn’t find their bottles or gels. It was great to not have to rely on aid stations. I also took 2 Metasalts before the race. I had a great pre-race dinner the night before of salmon, quinoa salad, and broccoli. I made sure during the week to drink a recovery drink (Ultragen) after workouts.
This year the weather was amazing. There was even a tail wind. Everything went perfect for me. I tried hard to keep my pace. A few of my friends pulled away from me after mile seven and I wanted to stay with them but felt I should keep to my goal pace. I passed the clock at the halfway mark and the time looked perfect. Now was the time to catch my friends. After a few miles I was excited to see them getting closer. With encouraging words from friends along the way and pushing through the pain I had five miles to go. I was still on track for my time. I told myself that the pain I feel now and would feel later would go away, but my time would stay forever. Thinking of another race that hadn’t gone as planned I dug deep and kept going strong. I told myself to keep putting one foot in front of the other and I crossed the finish line achieving a PR and my goal….2 hours and 58 minutes!
It was all worth it, waking up at 4 on Saturday mornings, track workouts, and pushing myself when I wondered if it would pay off. I’m still feeling the rush of that day! My most favorite things about racing are mental/physical benefits and the friendships I’ve made.
Not a great pic (I took it), but she is the girl in the Bike Fix top (I guess she is the only girl in the pic actually)
Great race Crystal!! I have to say that this girl is an amazing athlete. She is so strong mentally and works incredibly hard. She was nice enough to let me coach her, and it was so fun! Her previous PR was 3:09. That was a marathon in which she only did a few long runs. I was drooling at the chance to put her on a training schedule. She agreed and there were definitely some hard tempo and long run workouts. It was also very exciting for me to see her dial in her nutrition. I was waiting at the finish line for her and was super nervous as I watched the race clock get closer and closer to 3 hours. I almost started bawling when I saw her coming down the chute! It is the most rewarding thing to see such a phenomonal athlete reach her goal after working incredibly hard.