Posted in Uncategorized on November 20, 2011|
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Patrick Rogers post Philly Marathon
I am just bursting with happiness for my friend Patrick Rogers who ran his first marathon today in Philadelphia.
I met Patrick a year or so ago in the dog run, we became running buddies and now great friends.
Patrick had not run much before but knew he wanted to run and knew he wanted to run a marathon. He did not get in through the lottery so he signed up for Philly. We ran together over the winter and spring as I prepared for my best half marathon ever. But unfortunately Patrick came down with a nagging injury that kept him out of running most of the summer. But that was not until after my casual coaching of him lead him to beat me in a 4 miler and a 10k race – drat!
I went to NM for the summer and Patrick took time off running. When I returned he was running 2-3 times a week just a few miles but he really wanted to run the Philly marathon. I urged him to run the half. With 6 weeks to Philly he told me he really wanted to do it and felt he could. Certainly he was mentally fit. This was an excellent if not crazy challenge. Since getting my USATF coaching certification I have never formally coached anyone. I am always good for advice – after all I am a teacher. So against all good judgement I made Patrick a 6 week marathon plan, to expand aerobic fitness, build strength, and not get injured.
I carefully placed long runs 15-18-15-20-12- giving him only minimal taper, threw in weekly striders and hills. Patrick had run 10 miles with me the week before he started this, but that was the longest all summer. Carefully monitoring, resting when needed, today he unleashed it like a pro.
I gave him the last minute advice 1. Patients 2. Find a mantra 3. When you get to mile 20 you only have 10k to go, evaluate and run a 10k race 4. At mile 24 hammer it 5. Smile as you cross the finish line
Patrick ran the first 10k slower than I thought he would run, 9:17, but at the 1/2 his average time dropped to 9:05, then at 30k his average pace dropped even more to 9:03 and he finished with an average pace of 9:06, 3:58:36 , sub 4:00. I was so extremely proud of him and filled with pride for being able to get him safely, happily and quickly across the line. His face was pure bliss. The only ache was a left shoulder and bicep from running a bit to stiff, it was not a surprise. I grabbed him shortly after the finish getting him to eat a banana, drink some water and rub some biofreeze into his painfully sore arm. Tim his wonderful and super supportive boyfriend found us on the bench by the massage tent. I have a super cute pic of Tim helping Patrick change his pants, socks and shoes, but I didn’t get a chance to ask him if I can post it, so perhaps it will come later. But what was really funny is that Patrick forgot his running socks and wore black cotton dress socks. It was unbelievably no blisters. We helped him peel off his shirt and put a dry one on, I pulled his hat over his head. His lips were a little blue and he was in that post marathon dream state so I kept looking over at him to make sure hypothermia didn’t set in. We went to the Starbucks and got skinny cafe latte’s. Patrick and Tim caught the Amtrak and I got the Chinatown bus back to NYC. I am just beside myself with joy for him.
On a more somber note. I arrived at the marathon at 10:00am to see the 3:00 folks come in. The 3:10 pacer came in with a group, one of the guys dropped less than 1000 meters from the finish. Two runners from the group stopped right there and the medics rushed in. The medics voraciously performing CPR in a way that you knew, but did not want to think about the outcome. It must have been over 15 minutes before an ambulance showed up. The pacer took the group to the finish and returned to the scene still going on. The little medic tractor vehicles showed up but still we saw no ambulance. I felt myself sweating and wanting to scream, “where is the fucking ambulance?” Perhaps it was already too late and that is why everything went so slow, but the runner died. I can’t help but think he was after that Boston 3:10 Qualifier and was so close to the finished but never made it. I am so deeply saddened for him for his family.
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