Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Series Preview: 2015 Seattle Quadzilla

Over Thanksgiving weekend, I’ll once again be running four marathons in the greater Seattle area.  They’re collectively known as the Seattle Quadzilla.  There are other places where you can run marathons on four or more consecutive days, but this one has the longest history of all quadzillas currently in existence.

The first race, on Thanksgiving Day, is the Wattle Waddle, which starts and finishes at Gas Works Park.  Friday’s race is the Wishbone Run, which is in the suburb of Tukwila.  Saturday’s race is the Ghost of Seattle.  This is run on the original course of the Seattle Marathon.  Finally, on Sunday I’ll run the Seattle Marathon, which starts and finishes near the Space Needle.

This is my third straight Seattle Quadzilla, and it may be my last one.  It’s a larger than life experience, but if you don’t live in the area, it means being away from home for the entire Thanksgiving weekend.  There’s a limit to how many times I’ll do that.  I also need to cut back on the number of races I do.  Next year, my priorities will be getting healthy and getting back in shape.  After that, I’ll probably focus more on individual races.

Running marathons on four straight days is challenging, but I always seem to face extra challenges when I do these races.  Two years ago, I was recovering from a pulled hamstring.  Last year, I faced varying combinations of rain, snow, strong winds and cold temperatures.  I got hypothermic three days in a row.  This year will probably be the toughest.  The weather looks favorable, but I have other concerns.

I’m still coping with a groin strain, among other things.  It doesn’t help that it’s only been a few days since the Harpeth Hills Flying Monkey Marathon, and that race really beat up my legs.  My quads and hip flexors are sore, and my hamstrings are tight.

I also have a new concern.  Sunday evening, as I was removing some tape from my left foot, I tore off a patch of skin the size of a dime.  It was bleeding profusely at the time.  By Monday morning, the bleeding had stopped, but it was still tender.  It’s on the bottom of my foot, just in front of the heel.  I can feel it when I walk.  I don’t know how much it will hurt when I run.

In past years, I was disappointed if I couldn’t keep my finish times under four hours.  This year, I’ll be happy if I can keep them under six hours.  It’s all about finishing each race.

In 2013 and 2014, I found it convenient to spend the first three nights in the suburb of Renton, before moving to a downtown hotel for the last race.  This year, I’m going to stay downtown for the whole weekend.  This is the view from my room.

Switching hotels after Saturday’s race, and then also going to the Seattle Marathon expo, made for a hectic day.  That was when I was faster.  Now, I just don’t have enough hours in the day for that.

I’ll try to post a brief race report after each race.

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