It worked out perfectly because the brothers Hanson wanted me to do 6-10-6, but as a compromise, I did 0 - 13.1 - 0. I wasn't necessarily in half shape, but it's not that much more than 10 and I'd be done running by 9am so it wouldn't interfere with our limited vacation time. After I registered, however, my quad started feeling overworked, but it was too late to change my mind.
Then on Thursday morning, my first thought when I woke up was "I'm getting sick." grrrrr!!!!! Worst timing ever!!! When I woke up at 5am for the race, my ears ached and I was full of solid snot, but I've never not done a race. Besides, my 4th best marathon was under similar conditions. So I took two DayQuil, one ibuprofen, slathered menthol gel on my leg and tucked tissue in my sleeves. Had to try! I had already been justifying my time though. "It's my best winter half...." or "It's my fastest out of state half...."
It was cold, in a relative sense. Compared with Michigan, it was a downright balmy 30 degrees at start time. Bill stayed with me until the last minute and let me wear his jacket, then I knew I'd warm up as I ran. My strategy was to go slooooooooow and let my leg dictate my pace. It was a training run, and I just wanted to log the miles.
It's funny. Once I stopped trying to force a specified pace, and just let my legs go free, great things happened. My first mile was well over 10 minutes, then they kept getting faster. Around the halfway point, I saw a woman with 2:15 pinned on her back and thought if I can just stay with her...
The sun came up, we ran toward the ocean, and I stopped noticing my leg. The weather was absolutely perfect for running - mid to upper 30s and sunny. I drank water on the even miles, but I was never dehydrated because I wasn't sweating so much in the cool temps. My strategy was to walk through a few sips of water, blow my nose, then keep going.
10 miles felt great. With a 5k to go, I started to entertain thoughts of a possible pr. I had roughly 33 minutes to finish and pr, so I told myself to hang on to 10-minute miles, even though everything after the first had been significantly faster than that.
It felt amazing. I kept going and kept feeling stronger with each successive mile. In the finishing chute, I knew a PR was happening and I had a huge grin on my face as I passed runner after runner after runner. I passed Bill on the sideline, raised both arms and yelled "PR!!!!" My pace in the last 0.1 was under 7-minutes and I could have kept going. It's only appropriate that I crossed the finish line to Pharell's "Happy."
2:05:02!!!!!! (official time - I wasn't positive where the start/finish lines were exactly so my watch is a nibble off, in both time and distance). My previous best had been a 2:08:49. It's not the sub-2 I'm training for, but it's also 6 weeks earlier than the Rock CF half, which is the target to break 2 hours. Had I known I was that close to going under 2:05, I would have skipped blowing my nose once lol That's all the difference in time between +5 and -5.
It was really expensive. Since I did so well, it's worth it :) It was very well organized, and runners got some nice goodies - a heavy duty drawstring backpack, a long-sleeve tech shirt that's pretty generic looking. I certainly have nicer, but I definitely have much worse as well. It's ladies' cut, I like the color and it fits so I can ignore all the sponsor logos on the back. The best goodie was a super sweet medal shaped like flip flops. Plus we got to run next to the beach in February - what's better than that?
|Photographer said ok to share thumbnails. Look at my raised leg - I'm flying!|