Below is the Memphis Marathon race report of Julie Lukachko. Julie has been a Bretscher Multisport coached athlete for the past year. While competing in triathlons this past summer Julie set PRs at every distance in which she competed and capped off the summer with a 5:18 performance at the Spirit of Racine, a 17 minute PR! Julie spent the fall training for the Memphis Marathon. She entered the race with a PR of 3:50 and a goal of running the Boston qualifying time, 3:40. Needless to say Julie was thrilled with her 3:31 finish time! Another Bretscher Multisport athlete, Dana Riederer, also competed in the same race with a similar result. Dana had a previous PR of 2:52, a goal of 2:45, and a finish time of 2:42! Julie is known for her great race reports so I asked her to submit this one for the blog. Congrats Julie and Dana!
Felt pretty excited/nervous when I woke up. Ate some oatmeal and a banana and drank some gatorade and water. I went back and forth about what to wear and finally decided on shorts, a t-shirt, headband and gloves. They were calling for it to be 28F and sunny at the race start with a high of 38F. We hopped on the trolley to AutoZone park, checked our clothes (I was so cold!) and made our way to the start line. Thank God Lauren was there to hug for warmth. We started in the 3rd corral of runners, pace 7:30-8:10.
I went through the first mile at 8:01 and settled in to a comfortable pace. It was awesome running down Beale Street with all the people in the streets! My shoe came untied at mile 3. It didn't really slow me down, it was just annoying to have to take my gloves off and stop to re-tie it. My fastest mile (7:37) was running through the St. Jude Children's Hospital campus, it was hard not to feel inspired running through there. I was feeling so good running 7:50 pace, I wasn't sure if I should try to slow down more or just go with it. I decided just to go with it. I went through the 10k at 48:14 (7:47/mi). I continued to feel awesome through the half marathon point and was enjoying the day (and the fact that I was not hurting... yet). I clocked through 13.1 in 1:41:58 (7:47/mi). What's funny about this is my half marathon time in Madison, WI back in May was 1:41:12. The course was rolling but no major hills. I felt relaxed and strong running the uphill portions.
After the halfway point, my mile pace started to slow slightly. I still felt great but I was clocking closer to 8 minute miles (miles 14 through 18). I had settled into a nice pack of 5 people who seemed to be running consistent 8 minute miles. Unfortunately, I had to pee pretty much from the start of the race. I bargained with myself to make it through mile 20 before I stopped. Well, I made it to mile 18 before I couldn't take it anymore. After a quick stop, I felt like I lost my rhythm a little and could feel my miles starting to slow. I also lost touch with the pack of people I had been running with. The next three miles slowed down considerably. I went through mile 20 in 2:38:10 (7:55/mi). I remember Daniel telling me that if I went through mile 20 in 2:45 I would still be able to run 8:30 miles and run under 3:40. I was taking water or gatorade every other mile and eating GU every 45-50 minutes.
Miles 22-24 had a downhill trend which I thought I would love but this is right about where my quads started to scream. My lateral quads, particularly the right one, started getting worse by the step. By this point I was just trying to be strong and not walk but I was hurting pretty good. I started passing lots of people walking but decided not to join them. After the mile 25 marker I started getting really excited knowing that I was pretty much guaranteed to run under my goal time. Right before the mile 26 marker, they made us run up this really steep on ramp and I....walked... ugh. It was only for maybe 15 seconds but I walked. That was the only over 9 minute mile I ran (I was hoping to have none). I hit mile 26 and it was downhill into AutoZone Park from there. I think I ran the entire last tenth of a mile with my arms up in the air, I was SO excited!! I crossed the line with an official time of 3:31:50. That's almost a 19 minute PR from my previous marathon and 8 minutes under my goal.
It was a great feeling to run as well as I did. I spent the majority of my last marathon training plan injured but this time was different. Daniel really put together a solid plan for me to follow and gave me constant feedback. He made sure I was training smarter this time around and it certainly paid off! I think if I can just build my endurance a little bit more, I can run sub-3:30 in my next marathon.
8:31 (1.1) Half time of 1:41:58
8:49 (stopped to pee)
9:07 (walked about 15 seconds up the on ramp)
TOTAL TIME 3:31:50!!!!!