Thursday, March 24, 2011

Whitney's Shamrock Marathon Race Report and Lauren's Weekend Spectator Fun!

Whitney's Race Report:

Back in 2009, before I ran my first marathon, I was told that the first marathon that you run, you should just be concerned with finishing. Forget about everything else, and just run the darn thing. That is exactly what I did. I trained with Team In Training, raised a ton of money for cancer research and completed my first marathon (MCM 2009) in 4:36:50. Before running my second marathon (MCM 2010), I was told to enjoy the experience. Yeah right- who really enjoys running 26.2 miles??? But I did it- I ran the marathon and took in the awesome spectators and the energy of the event. I finished in 4:17:09.

With 2 marathons under my belt, running a marathon was no longer scary for me. I knew I would somehow manage to survive the 26.2 miles, and I would finish the race on Sunday. However finishing was not enough for me anymore. I wanted to race! And most importantly I wanted to break 4 hours. Oh and if I was having an awesome day, I wanted to break 3:50. Yes- I know this sounds absolutely crazy, seeing how I ran a 4:17 marathon less than 6 months prior.


The week leading up to marathon I was a mess. I was having dreams about running. I was printing out the pace bands and obsessively checking the weather for race day. I knew I had put in the work, but I was afraid of letting myself down. On top of that- I didn’t want to make my parents and Lauren drive all the way down to VA Beach to watch me have a lousy race. The week dragged on, and I was so excited when it was over. Finally on Saturday, Lauren and I packed up, and headed south. The trip was nice. Lauren and I always have plenty to talk about  and traffic wasn’t TOO bad. Driving on 95 South is always an experience. Once we got to VA Beach, we headed straight to the race expo. Overall I thought the expo was well run and served its purpose, but it is definitely not like the MCM expo. I was able to find the pace group table and talked to the 2 of the pacers for the race. My plan was to start with the 3:50 pace group and if I needed to fall back to the 4:00 group I would. After the expo, I was able to meet up with my Mom and Step-Dad, who I call Fuzzy, and we figured out where they were going to be on race day. Mom and Fuzzy always have a way of putting me at ease, and that is exactly what I needed. I was able to relax, refocus and rest for the big day. Lauren and I went to the Team Z dinner later that night, and ate like CHAMPIONS! Geez- I think we both consumed enough pasta for 6 people. Post dinner- we went back to the hotel, met up with Lauren’s good friends for a little bit and then called it a night.


I woke up from a good night’s sleep and was ready to go- slightly nervous, but a good nervous. I met up with Mom and Fuzzy for my pre-race hugs, and about 45 minutes later the gun went off. Marathon #3 had started. I ran the first 10 miles with the 3:50 pace group. I felt great! The wind was lousy, but I guess that is what I should have expected when running along the ocean. I highly suggest running with a pace group. It takes all the pressure off of you, and you feel like you are doing a training run. At mile 11, I decided that I was feeling strong enough to break away from the pace group. I turned up my music and took off. I crossed the half marathon point at 1:54.08- still on pace to break 3:50. From mile 11 to mile 18, I felt very strong. I was passing people- this definitely was a confidence booster! My 18 mile split was 02:36.31, again on pace to break 3:50. At this point, I knew that I would definitely break 4 hours; however, I was starting to tighten up and wasn’t 100% sure I was going to be able to reach my goal of breaking 3:50. Miles 19 to 23 were awful! No fan support. No shelter from the wind or the sun. And I had already run 18 plus miles. Yuck! I still pushed on. Seven miles later I crossed the finish line at 03:49:19. SUCCESS!!!  A huge thanks goes out to Mom, Fuzzy and Lauren! They were awesome cheerleaders, and I know I would not have been able to do it without them.

Overall results:

7 Mile Split: 01:01:02

13.1 Mile Split: 01:54:08

18 Mile Split: 02:36:31

Finishing Time: 03:49:19

Division Place: 18

Gender Place: 180

Overall place: 747

Lauren's Weekend Highlights:


and of course cheering on Whitney as she kicked ass.


  1. They make them chocolate dipped now? Holy moly! That's simply brilliant!

  2. Congrats to Whitney!

    And I must find those peeps. Seriously just made my night!

  3. I found your blog while searching for other shamrock marathon reports. I wasn't near as fast as you but I thought it was a great race for my first marathon. That wind was wicked before the start though!