We had a great to race on Sunday for the Run for Retina Half Marathon with sunshine and temperatures up around 17°C (low 60's), but here's what we woke up to this morning…
Seriously, when is this going to end? Hopefully this was the last we'll see of the white stuff for a long time.
The race itself went well…like I said the weather cooperated and it was a great day to run. There was rain in the forecast but other than a few drops on the windshield driving there we were fine. The race was downtown along the river paths, which had been flooded out earlier in the week. Despite more rain leading up to the run, the paths were clear and dry. A couple muddy spots and maybe a puddle or two, but just fine all things considered.
There was a Half Marathon, 10K and 5K and us Half Marathoners were first off at 9:15…a nice late start, no early morning alarm required. It wasn't a huge field with just over 100 people running the Half. I happened to be lined up near the front but I really didn't feel like I would have my best race. I'm still on the low end of where I want my mileage to be and training has been almost non-existent.
The gun went off and I started out towards the first turnaround about 2K out. I was going way too fast at first and was really trying to force myself to slow down. I was in 4th place by the time I hit the turnaround and knew my pace was still too quick. I can still put up good quick times and run fast if I want to, but my endurance just isn't where it needs to be to sustain the quick pace for longer distances.
I managed to hold my pace pretty steady for the first 15K (almost 10 miles) and had slipped to 9th place…it was at 15K though that I just felt so TIRED. My legs got super heavy and just didn't want to push on anymore. On top of that the temperatures had warmed up quite a bit and even though it was only in the 60's it felt so much hotter after the weather we've been getting since November. May as well have been 100° as far as I was concerned. I kept going as fast as I could but I was spent. I had taken a Gu gel a bit earlier but could barely stomach it…I think it's time for me to change my fuel as Gu's just don't work for me anymore. They just stick to the back of my throat and make me cough the rest of the race.
As we were hitting the home stretch another guy passed me putting me back in tenth place…I decided I would give it all I had to get back in front of him and take 9th place. I kicked in with what I had left and made a push for a strong finish. I saw Michelle and Kennedy right near the finish line and they thought I looked fast at least…I passed the guy and finished in 9th with a time of 1:35:56, about 5 minutes off of where I was last year. Oh well, I survived what was, for me, a very tough run. At that 15K mark I felt the same way I normally feel the last 5K of a marathon…which is not good. I know I need to build up some more endurance again and this race was a good reminder for that!
I have another Half coming up in two weeks, the Forest City Road Race. I set my PR in that race last year and would love to have another good run there, but I think my main goal will be to just feel good throughout the entire race. I'll try to get in a couple of good training runs between now and then and see if I can improve on this run.
Any more snow hit where you are?
Any Gu alternatives to suggest?