This is hard to write....
I am in pain and I am extremely depressed. I was doing just fine until my heel flared-up between mile 22 and 23. I was in 11th place overall and averaging a 6:40 pace for the entire marathon at mile 22. I think I originally tweaked my heel 10 days ago doing some downhill mile repeats. It hurt a bit the next morning and would hurt a little at the start of each run and then be fine within a mile or so.
At the start of the marathon I felt it a little and then it went away before the first mile marker so I thought I was fine. I was holding a good pace and had picked-off 2 runners between mile 21 and 22 when it flared-up. It brought me to a dead stop and I had to hop on my right foot just to slow down. I tried to stretch it but nothing worked. I basically had to find a way to half-hop, half jog to the finish. If this would have happened earlier I would have taken the DNF. I was winning my age group by over 10 minutes....I still ended up 2nd. You will see by my mile splits how slow I came in. The day started good......now I can't even walk.
Here are my splits:
1. 6:37 (some uphill)
5. 6:45 (some uphill again)
12. 6:41 (some wierd turns this mile)
Half Split 1:25:44
15. 6:49 (on the trail now)
20. 7:12 (fighting a gut-ache from my last gel)
21. 7:01 (feeling better)
22. 7:00 (passed 2 runners...last good mile)
Basically I can hop/hobble a 10-11 minute mile to finish a marathon. I was easily on a 2:55-2:56 pace.
What I really need right now is a nice slow recovery run to help clear my head and put this behind me. It will probably be days until this can happen. I am not a happy person.