Saturday, November 01, 2008

My Marathon Man!

This morning Lowell participated in his first ever full marathon... the Auckland Marathon!

We were wide-eyed and bushy-tailed by 3:30am so we had time aplenty to drive into the city and take the ferry over to Devonport (along with 7000 other half & full marathoners) in time to stand in line for 25 minutes at the portapotties before starting the race at 6:30am.

Look at him. So happy…so na├»ve. Poor sucker doesn’t know what he’s getting himself into.

Now the (realistic) fear begins to kick in...

And he's off!

There they all go!

I had the priveledge of being the carry-everything supporter! I relished my role.

After watching Lowell begin the race of insanity, I took the ferry back to the city to kill time.

On my way to the ferry landing, I noticed this rubbish can overflowing with water bottles and CLOTHES. People stripped down before the race and just threw away their clothes. Shocking! This could be completely normal I guess... I'm new to the whole "marathon scene".

Anyhoo, once I arrived back in the city, I settled into a quaint coffee shop to watch part of Step Up 2 on the ipod (yeay Apple!) and delve into the latest of my Old Fashioned Christian Romance novels (thank you Marc & Kylie.. and thank you Linda Ford!)

I made my way to the finish line in time to do PLENTY of people watching. Between all the races going on (5km walk and quarter, half, & full marathons) there were 12,200 participants. There were a few 90-year olds, a couple 6-year olds, and people of every shape and size.

After running 42.2km in 3 hours and 45 minutes, Lowell came down the final stretch (while checking his time on his watch of course)...

Can you spot him in the following picture? He's JUST ABOUT to cross the finish line.

Here he is after the race...just a LITTLE tuckered.

C'mon Lowell, gimme a smile. YOU JUST FINISHED YOUR FIRST MARATHON!!

There we go. Thank you.

Yellow rubber duckies were very prevalent at this event. The motto was "You are a yellow rubber duck! You cannot be crushed. You cannot be broken. You bounce back. You will always rise to the surface." Who knew that yellow rubber duckies could be so profound?!

After the race, I was still his carry-everything supporter... but this time I even got to carry his smelly shoes (no offense Lowell)!!

Note the one-lensed sunglasses (belonging to Lowell) on my head. Lowell wore these glasses on his head (over his hat as the sun didn't come out for a while) during the race, and one lens popped out when he collided with a tree while dodging pot holes. NZ's got some vicious trees... Lowell has the one-lensed sunglasses and a bumpy head to prove it.

To close, here are some random facts about the Auckland Marathon:
* It is the richest road race in New Zealand, with $24,000 in prize money.
* 12,200 entrants.
* Runners and walkers from 37 different countries competing.
* 45,000 litres of water at the aid stations.
* 80,000 paper cups.
* 11,500 bananas.
* 2500 road cones on the course (one of which Lowell also had a collision with which resulted in a purple toe).
* 600 volunteers.

And once again... I'm SO PROUD OF HIM!!!!!


shareen said...

YAY LOWELL! You barely look like you ran at all in those pictures...are you sure you didn't just pose at the start and then at the finish? :) I was so proud of my 4.5km run this morning (with TWO hill intervals thank you very much) but since you've quite literally run 10 times that distance it doesn't seem so exciting. :)

Anonymous said...

Way to go Lowell! Looks like you had a great race and a good time. I can't imagine running with 12000 people - I usually whine and complain when the races I am in have 120! Good for you! Now - just make sure you keep your legs moving, or else the might just freeze up....

Shelley said...

wow...go lowell!!!
I don't know how people find energy to run marathons. seriously, how??

avery said...

congrats Lowell!! I know how much work it is to do about half of that and that's enough for me (for now)! All your hard work paid off I see. Quite a good time too:)

Lowell Taylor said...

Thanks for each of your comments!

Shareen, I started running a few years ago and 4.5k was a really long distance to me too! I am proud of you and your new found running! Maybe someday you will be nuts enough to try a marathon...

Alisha - yes, running with that many people is crazy. For the first 21km it was like a wall of runners. Trying to pass and be passed was pretty crazy. A few people tripped up on each other. I ran into a guy when he stopped right before me to get a handful of candy... I would have enjoyed it more if there were less, but there is something about it all that is pretty fun to be a part of. Oh, and it is 2 days after and my legs feel pretty good. I have been walking and stretching a lot. No freezing up (fewph)!

Shelly, the energy comes from eating a lot! Oh, and for me, I also have 'extra energy' stored onboard, so this helps me to try and use it up. *smile*

Avery, I like 1/2 marathons more. You were actually the first person I really knew that ran a 1/2! The last half killed me. I had run my fastest 1/2 for the first part at 1hr 40mins, but for the last 10km I really slowed down. Next marathon I will aim for under 3:30! =)

Susan said...

Wow...great job! I am very impressed. Maybe someday I will think about tackling a 1/2. Maybe.

Anonymous said...

I will never look at a yellow rubber duck the same again!
Oh yeah, good job Lowell...
Julie Renee I see you are wearing a hat over your hair?

Anonymous said...

What was the fastest time at the Marathon? Congratulations, that is farther than I have every run, farther than I ever will run!

Lowell Taylor said...

Hey Martz and Lando, thanks for your comments. Yes, the rubber ducks were everywhere. They even gave us our own to take home. There were little ducks on the sidewalk at about 34km. My head was down and I was hurting, but it surprisingly gave me a bit more drive.

Lando, the fastest male time was: 02:28:10
the fastest female time was: 02:46:43
The new world record set this year by an Ethiopian was 2h 3m 59s.
That is crazy!
I do think I can do it faster now that I know what it is like. That was the first time I had run 42km. The previous farthest I had gone was 33. That extra 9km really makes a difference.
I think that is the farthest I will ever run. I amazed by those who do ultra-marathons, or back to back marathons. Two guys did 50 marathons in 50 days, in 50 states! Crazy! And Terry fox ran nearly a Marathon a day (37k) for 143 consecutive days! Wow.

Anonymous said...

Good on ya Lowell! Wish it was me! I would love to try an ultra...50-80 miles...that's my next dream!

Bloggy Mama said...

Both amazing and crazy!!

Christi said...

As I was reading this Abi looked over and said "Wow that is a monster duckie"

Anonymous said...

Congrats Lowell! I like that you wore a t-shirt from a "Moose is Loose" race! I have one of those as well and I recognized it in the pictures. Very Canadian too, with the moose. Congrats on the awesome run - you're a machine!!!

Also, the big yellow duck reminds me of a game that I used to play with some kids, called "Ducky, Ducky". Basically, instead of punching for a punch-buggy, we would punch if we spotted a yellow car. It's quite addiciting...surprisingly, there's not many yellow cars so it's exciting when you see one!

Oh, also - happy early birthday!!!!

Take care over there,