October 31, 2009
I feel like I'm posting this everywhere but facebook
I ran a half-marathon today, and PR'd, and broke 90 minutes for the first time ever. And that's the short story, so if running blogs or race reports (or bloggers named joe positive) bore you, you can stop reading right now and go on to the next thing. But you are welcome to read on for the gory details, which are also posted nearly-verbatim in several other places (but not facebook). Because it's a PR, dammit!
Anyway, this was the inaugural of a Halloween half-marathon, held in a state park on a barrier island about 35 miles away. 7:05 start = very early wakeup, very long drive to get there in time for packet and chip and warmup, etc. It was pitch black dark during my warmup, part of which I did with Fabulous Masters Runner, who was there in costume. She ran well at Steamtown 3 weeks ago and is still (and wisely) recovering, so she told me she was just running, not racing. I wondered how her "running" pace compared to my "racing" pace, figured I'd soon find out.
The course was a 3mi loop and then an out-n-back. Originally we were to start with the accompanying 5K, but at the last minute the RD decided the 5K would start 15 minutes after we did. Yay! no traffic problems. But this decision caused a delay in our start. Boo! even warmer weather to contend with.
Because the weather was less than ideal (74F/95%RH) I really meant to go out conservatively. But I got into a pack of acquaintances (including Fabulous Masters Runner) going a bit faster, and I thought it would be better to hang with them because miles 4-8 were going to be into the wind. When their pace got down to 6:45s, I eased up and ran just off the back, but kept contact. I ended up beating all of them but one, btw - most of them just died the minute we turned into the wind.
I tried to draft whenever I could in the headwind and picked off a few guys along the way. As we neared the turnaround I saw that I was 3rd woman, and both girls (way, way) ahead of me were 20something, so I knew I had a shot at masters.
After the turnaround, I saw that FMR was almost a half-mile behind me and not gaining, so I was safe there. The tailwind wasn't nearly as annoying as I thought it would be, and I couldn't believe the paces my watch was showing me, but I felt good. I just stalked men (sounds creepy, doesn't it) until there was no one left in front of me, somewhere around mile 12.
And then I got tired. I knew my mile times had been pretty good, but I didn't dare look at the total time; if it was close-but-impossible to PR (1:30:25) or even break 1:30, I didn't want to know. On the other hand, if it was doable, that knowledge might keep me going. Anyway, I ended up not looking, chickenshit me.
Around 12.5, the sole surviving member of our original pack passed me and said, "let's do it." I thought "no, you do it." but decided to chase as best I could, which was not very well. Once we were actually running toward the clock I struggled to see the time - 1:2X:XX and I couldn't tell if the X was an 8 or 9. Turned out to be a 9 and I thought "shit." But the XX turned out to be a 15, and it was no way/it'll never happen/maybe/I think it might/oh yes it will/yay, 4 seconds! all the way to the line.
technical stuff: 1:29:56, PR, 3rd female, no prizes or anything like that, but I don't care.
(loop) 7:01, 6:48, 47
(headwind) 7:05, 6:55, 53, 54, 52
(tailwind) 6:51, 47, 43, 38, 42 (getting tired)
6:32 pace for the last bit.
GPS says 13.17 miles.
my right achilles, which has been bugging me all week, is fairly screaming now.
Posted by joe positive at October 31, 2009 1:27 PM
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That wasn't boring at all joe positive. Well done on the PR and sub-90. Also nice to be on the podium and beat FMR, even if she claims she was only running. Good luck with the achilles.
Posted by: Ewen at November 1, 2009 12:51 AM
Posted by: Mindi at November 1, 2009 3:57 PM
Congrats on the PR!!! Well done...
Posted by: Alejandro at November 11, 2009 9:47 PM