I swore after last year that I wouldn't return to do this 1/2 marathon, but here I am writing up the race report.....Yeah, not consistent, lol. It did take me a full 4 days to recover from the CCC 10k/long run combo that I did last weekend so I decided that since this is such a brutal course for me that I would treat it as a training run. This is also the longest distance that I've ran since last November. I do have some nagging re-occurring injuries that I'm trying to baby while also building my mileage base back up. Hopefully, if I ease into the base slowly enough they will be resolved.
Ankle is still improving but the plantar fasciitis in my left foot continues to nag at me :-(. As a result I've been avoiding hill training running because it does aggravate the hell out of both. The cycling is a different story. I've already discussed how I keep the trainer tension on my back wheel tightened up to the point where it feels like the whole session is going uphill and I've resumed my outdoor rides which of course are not flat, lol. The cycling is going awesome this year and I think it's the reason that I was able to complete the past couple of races as well as I have with the lack of consistent running miles since the Midsouth Marathon last November.
As a matter of fact, I went for a 46.91 mile ride yesterday with some very strong riders on one of the hilliest routes in the area and still felt great afterwards. Even this morning my legs didn't feel fatigued. My running issues by the way have nothing to do with my leg strength, it's the damn feet and ankles holding me back. Cycling gives me the aerobic & strength workouts I'm needing without the pounding on my feet. So I'm going to continue upping the intensity & length of those sessions while trying to get in an elliptical session once a week in the hopes that will keep me somewhat uninjured.
So back to today....Unfortunately no points because the full was the grand prix race this time, sigh.....Oh well, I suppose I'll survive, lol!!! Started out kinda chilly but not overly so. Actually my race the temperature stayed great, those running the full had a different outcome, it became HOT for them. I did have a tweetup yesterday & today with Sweet Daddy D, that was so cool!!!!!!!
First mile was too fast (so what else is new) but after that I kind of settled into a rhythm and managed to catch up with Susan, a Cabot Cruiser and spent most of the rest of the race chatting with her, enjoyed it so much :-), made the miles fly by. My only goal for this 1/2 was to survive it and enjoy myself and for the most part I accomplished that, yay!!! Walked a handful of the waterstops & generally chatted with as many people as I could that wanted to talk. On the last couple of miles talked to a guy that when I introduced myself as Gabby, he asked my last name, when I told him, he said "I've heard of you, you're famous! You're an excellent runner". Shocked me, didn't know that I was talked about in that way and it was kinda flattering although I don't consider myself to be that excellent or fast. I am a front of the pack mid-packer when I'm not fighting injuries so no, not quite fast.
I really surprised myself today, there were a few places where the energy flagged but those monster hills coming back--I didn't have to walk 'em. Now mind you, I'm pretty sure a walker could've passed me I was slogging up them so slow but I DIDN'T HAVE TO WALK THIS YEAR!!!! And the beer stop? Yeah, I stopped & grabbed a cup this year although it was just one sip, LOL!!!
Mile 1 8:57 (too fast)
Mile 2 9:02 (still faster than I wanted)
Mile 3 8:55 (uh, what the heck?!!!!)
Mile 4 9:02
Mile 5 9:07
Mile 6 9:11
Mile 7 9:34 (this is where I should've been all along for a training run)
Mile 8 9:12
Mile 9 9:50 (coming back into the hills)
Mile 10 9:32
Mile 11 10:20 (big hill!!!)
Mile 12 10:07
Mile 13 9:29
Mile 13.1 2:10
Here's a link to the elevation chart for the 1/2 marathon
Total per garmin 2:04:28 for 13.2 miles. Last year's time was 2:01:34 and I was miserable the entire 2nd half of the race. So yeah, I will take the approximately 3 minutes slower this year and OWN it. I felt better during and afterwards & had fun!!! Didn't set out to race, planned all along this week that it would be a training run & I accomplished that in a not too shabby amount of time.
A huge shout out to all my friends who completed a grueling marathon in warm temps & especially to Marla who completed her first marathon today!!!!! Woo-hoo!!!!!! Actually Marla can claim ultra status since they got led off course & she ended up with 27.43 miles :-).