Sunday, October 2, 2011

Bob Dolphin Labor Day Marathon Race Report

September 5, 2011

My program toward my 500th marathon had slowed during August when I ran only one marathon. To
get back on track, we added the Labor Day Marathon on Monday, September 5, 2011. Lenore signed
me up and received permission from race director Bob Green for me to take an early start. I had a
cortisone shot for my degenerative disc disease problem, but I would still be walking the marathon with
hopes of finishing in less than eight hours.

We drove to Elma where the race was held and checked in at the fairly new Microtel Inn. Then we
drove the course to make sure I remembered it correctly. I had run this double out-and-back several
times under the name of Gateway to the Pacific Marathon. The last time was seven years ago, so I
needed to make this familiarization drive.

We located the start/finish area in Vance Creek Park, drove two miles to cross the Chehalis River
Bridge, made a left turn onto South Bank Road, and drove south on a two-lane paved road to a large
conspicuous Briggs Nursery sign that was used as the turn-back marker. This was the way I had
remembered it!

The next morning I returned to the park, started my timing watch at 6:00 a.m. and began my marathon
walk. It was barely light at that time with the temperature in the 50’s, clear skies and a high fog cloud
cover. The course is flat with some easy grades and smooth pavement so it made for easy walking. It’s
in a pleasant rural area with attractive farms where there are some crops and hay for the herds of cattle
and horses in the pastures. While most of the land has been cleared, there are Douglas Fir forests in
some areas.

When I came around a curve, the nursery sign was in view. I stopped there just short of two hours, so
I was on schedule for an eight-hour marathon walk. I retrieved a water bottle that I’d stashed there the
day before to assist with my hydration efforts. As I began the return on my second leg, I met my friend
Marathon Maniac (MM) Monte Pascual, a new member of the 100 Marathon Club North America. It
took him only three years to run his first 100 marathons, and he was on schedule to run #200 the next
Sunday at the Skagit Flats Marathon in Burlington in less than six years!

A few miles later I met MM’s Diana “Slug” Robinson , Brian Pendleton and Robert Stretz . It was good

triathletes who had done a swim in the lake at Vance Creek Park before starting this portion of their
triathlon. This was another event directed by Bob Green.

After five hours into my walk, the sky cleared, it became sunny, and the air temperature crept up to the
low 80’s. At the nursery sign I turned back for the last leg of 6.55 miles, and I appreciated the cooling
breeze that appeared.

In the final miles I pushed my pace as much as I could to see if I could finish under eight hours. When
I entered the park, I knew that it would be close, and it was. I crossed the bridge over Vance Creek to
the finish area, and my watch showed my finishing time to be 7:49:30. Lenore, her Central Washington
University classmate Harold Mazanti and his friend Joan were there to greet me.

It had been a good day for marathon #490, and I think the cortisone shot helped!

Written by Bob Dolphin
Edited, Typed and Distributed by Lenore Dolphin


3:35:02 Myk Rose, 25, Monmouth, OR
3:36:46 Jodi Irey, 40, Kent
3:44:12 Courtney Smith, 32, Seattle
3:46:22 Timothy Martin, 51, Olympia
4:12:14 Claudia Hansen, 41, Lakewood, MM
4:14:35 Tom McBride, 44, Olympia
4:38:38 Brian Pendleton, 45, Auburn, MM
4:42:42 Roger Adams, 52, Portland, OR, MM
4:43:13 Audrey Petterson, 46, Skamokawa
5:29:12 Monte Pascual, 51, Federal Way, MM
5:50:56 Diana Robinson, 44, Bellingham, MM
5:50:43 Robert Stretz, 43, Issaquah, MM
7:49:30 Bob Dolphin, 81, Renton/Yakima, MM

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