I got up on time after waking up and looking at the clock 3 or 4 times during the night like a kid on Christmas. I wasn't THAT excited for this race, it was more a in the middle of training, fun race, but still a race (which also means I get to break my running skirt out. Love it and it's kind of fun to have certain things I only use for races). Anyway, had my PB&J at 6:15am while surfing the web, finally meandered upstairs to get dressed about an hour later, and left for the 9am race about 7:50am. Nice. Arrived in enough time to use the bathroom twice, get my packet (tech shirt, reusable bag, nice), and warm up for all of maybe 5 minutes. I wanted more for sure. I've heard running 10-15 minutes at a pace 2-3 minutes slower than race pace can be very beneficial in getting the neurons, and all the little technical parts of the body warm and ready to race.
My great running partner Jonathan and I went out too fast for the first 3 miles, but it's hard not to get caught up in everything. I remember going from 1st to 4th lady at like 1/2 mile in and started hating the feeling of pressure to place overall. I didn't even want to think about it, just wanted to race my own race. Funny how my competitive feelings have changed. I don't get shy or hold any animosity toward competitors anymore, and get overwhelmed sometimes with the pressure (mostly from me actually.....and from Jonathan ;) ) to place, but enjoy the confidence at the same time of finally being in a position to compete. And don't get me wrong, I haven't totally softened up, I do LOVE to race.
Anyway, I ended up running miles 3-13 on my own, but that's ok. I was running fast, but felt in control most of the time. Felt pretty strong up the hills, except that JRT hill by the steam around mile 7? I carried my 10oz handheld during the race, and took my gel and Endurolyte at about 6.5-7 and maybe a sip of water at mile 3 and mile 10. It was perfect. I did also take a gel and Endurolyte 15 min before as I always do.
I passed the 3rd place lady early on, like mile 3, and had #2 in my sights the whole race, but she was far enough ahead (400 meters maybe?) I didn't put any pressure on myself to catch her, just raced my own race. About mile 11.5 I crept up a little, but still didn't really think about trying to pass her. But by 12 I was running 6:30-6:40 pace and feeling good, and did eventually catch her, much to my surprise with about 1/4 mile to go. I felt a little bad passing her, but at least it wasn't one of those all out 100meter out of control form sprints into the chute like I absolutely detest :)
Anyway, I did end up running a 1:35.06! but only got 13.05 miles on my watch, so if you wanna make it precise I probably ran a 1:36 something, BUT that's still under my 1:37 PR at Hobblecreek and this was not a generally downhill course, it had it's share of short uphill stretches, so I'll take it. The awards were lame, totally just called names and you picked up your prize, no time for clapping, no group picture. Oh well. I walked away with $40 to a local running store, but get this, the gift card cannot be used on anything on sale or clearance. Isn't that kind of weird/lame?
Crystal, Me, Heidi
Great job to Heidi for toughing though it with an icky stomach and all the leg issues you've dealt with. Very nice.
And Great Job Crystal! You finished your first half marathon - nothing half about that! :)
Jonathan, you ran a time we wanted, and without your partner in crime :) so kudos to you!
Awesome job with you 1:39.30 Chuck - nice run!!
Go Steve and Cindi for sneaking under the 2 hour mark! Wish we could've chatted longer
Yay for Dianna getting to run a half marathon after dealing with injury stuff the last couple years - way to go! Another thanks to Dianna for the Girl Scout cookies she sold me the day before the race. Whatever you laced them with, I'll take more :)
So all in all a great race. A couple of humerous/disturbing moments I'll share. We had to run about .5 mile on a dirt road. It isn't usually a dirt road, but they're tearing up the trail for some reason. Anyway, last week Heidi and Jonathan said it was in horrible shape, big ruts everywhere, definate evidence of big construction equipment driving around. Race day though, I found it very runnable, they must have smoothed it out. It was seriously like your average canal road. These guys behind me though, didn't think so. One of them said "Dude, this is a really rugged trail!" Are you kidding?? You don't trail run much I take it......were my thoughts, not my words :)
Next, after Jonathan and I split around mile 4, I passed this proabably 50 something year old guy, who said something about "all right, a pretty girl. I'll just hang back here and watch you run, this is the legal way to chase young girls you know" UH, WHAT?!? Holy pedaphile. How in the world am I supposed to take that? Yeah, that was disturbing, too bad for him I passed him and put at least several minutes between us. Yikes.
And finally, around mile 10 I ran along side this guy after he finally stopped trying to sprint ahead any time I got near him. I was totally not racing him, but he didn't think so I guess. Anyway, I tried to help him shorten his long stride since I could tell he was tired. He mentioned he had just run the Moab half the week before (I didn't mention what I had been doing the week before....hehe), so we chatted for a minute about the race. Then out of the blue he asked if I was single. Nope, sorry buddy, married with 3 kids. He politely said "well, it was worth a shot". That was totally ok with me, no offense taken at all. He was polite about it, not creepy like the old guy. I'll take his as flattery at least.
I'm sure he'll give me a hard time for putting this picture here, right after I talk about the weird guys at the race, but Jonathan is definitely not weird. He's a perfect training parter, and an excellent physical therapist. The only thing weird about him is the smile on his face while inflicting such torture on my glute and IT band. :)
Didn't get my ice bath at home like I would've like as we had some family time to spend out and about, and am feeling pretty stiff today. I'm sure it will work itself out soon. I took the pretty new green machine out to the Legacy Parkway trail north of SLC for a spin. Just wanted a chance to spin the legs, test out the new saddle and fit I have. It was so nice to have resonably straight trail, in great smooth condition, only have to eat a few bugs, and not have any cars to worry about. Aside from discomfort in the saddle I've got to get worked out, it was peaceful to just pop in some music (something I try not to do much) and ride without expectations along the pretty fields with the sun going down. I did push some pretty good speeds for not really trying to push hard which made me really happy. I love that bike!
I decided I'll put something valuable I may have learned at the bottom of a post so it's easy to find. So here's today's: Pack a bag with several different layering options in it to take with you to the race. I ended up stripping off my arm warmers and going with a thin long sleeve top instead, and I'm really glad I did. It's just nice knowing you aren't stuck with what you have if you decide the weather is warmer/cooler come starting time. Also pack extra nutrition in there (extra gels, electrolytes, drink mix, whatever you use), and have your recovery drink in there all ready to add water too.