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Running Background:

I consider myself a beginner runner. I started running 8 months ago to quit smoking! I decided to run a marathon because I was out of shape, smoked like a banshee and drank to much! I gave it all up, dropped 25 lbs and set the marathon as my goal.

Training:

I trained for 5.5 months following a 24-week training program that I found on the Internet. During my training I averaged 20 miles per week.

The best training advice I received while preparing for the 2006 Run Barbados Marathon was to tie your shoes loose! It helps save your feet.

Race Day:

The 2006 Run Barbados Marathon was worse than what I had expected.

Well I finished!! I ran the Barbados Marathon and finished in 4:31:06. I planned on a 9 minute mile pace and went out in 8:55 for the first half. After the "big hill" at mile 16 I started to fade. The race started at 5 am and by mile 16 the sun was getting hot -- 31 degrees (87 degrees Fahrenheit) hot! I started cramping with 10 km to go and with 5 km had to stop due to severe cramps. I was able to rest and then walk. I continued to alternate between running and walking until the final km which I was able to run in.

I did not make my four hour goal but in the end I am very happy with my time and the accomplishment!

Recovery:

My recovery wasn't bad. I drank a carb/protein shake right after the race, and I took some anti-inflammatories!

Running Gear Recommendations:

Mizuno Wave Elixir
I went through three pairs during my training.
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Fuel Belt
Great for having water/Gatorade with you when you need it.
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Tips/Words of Encouragement:

If you put in the time, it is all worth it. Finishing the race is just part of it. The long term positive effect on your health is the real reason to get off your butt!

Plans to Run Another:

I'm planning to run another marathon because I want to break 4 hrs. For my next marathon, I'm going to train more and include more long runs in my training. When I started I was only able to run two miles so I am well above that, and I'm looking forward to my next marathon.

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