Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Ocean City Half Marathon

I'm running the Ocean City Half Marathon this Sunday, October 2nd. There are a lot of things to be said about this race.

The best is that I'm looking forward to running with my friend Kristie and with my new friend Jamie. Kristie is a better athlete than I am. She will pooh pooh that but it's true. She takes her health and her fitness seriously. I admire that. Jamie will be running her second half marathon ever and, as I read her blog and FB posts, I can see that she has taken her first experience (which was much more respectable than she gives herself credit for) and applied it diligently to her training for this one. I admire that too. I'm excited to be able to start the race with both of them.

After the Rock N Roll Philly on the 18th I was on vacation and didn't even try to get any runs in. I came back from that and chased my nephew for a 5k on Saturday the 24th and had a hard Art Museum plyometric workout yesterday. That's it. It's anybody's guess how I'll do on Sunday. I know I'll have fun. I always do. And I should finish as long as my left hamstring behaves. I tweaked it during the Rock N Roll and it wasn't happy about the nephew chasing either. This is not an excuse. It is reality and the reason why I think it's foolish to make a time goal for this race. I'm really not prepared for this race. I haven't even figured out my strategy. I like run/walk but Jamie doesn't and I'd kind of like to see if I can keep up with her running the whole way. I've run an entire half marathon before but it's been awhile and I was better prepared then. Without a time goal, I think I will try though and if I can't keep up, I'll switch to run/walk and meet them at the finish line. No pressure, just do it.

Some other things to be said about this race:
- I get to run on the boardwalk. This is a big deal for me. My family started going to OCNJ in the summer when I was 9 or 10. I've always seen people running on the boardwalk but I never did it myself. Walked and road my bike but not run. When I started running for sport (2008) I knew I had to run the boardwalk sometime. This will be my chance. The race finishes on the boardwalk.
- I love the Shore but because of Hurricane Lee I did not make it to OC even once this season. It's not summer anymore but it is still 2011 so this will be my only trip. Whew!
- I want my picture taken with Mr. Peanut.

Monday, September 19, 2011

I Can Still Do This.

I had a blast AND I finished. Mission accomplished. I missed 2 1/2 hours by 2.06 seconds. I finished with no foot or joint pains. I am a very happy runner. So that's the end of the story. Here's how I got there.

For the first 9 miles I kept pace with Sammy, Anne, and John. I knew in my head that their pace was likely too fast for me but I stuck with them anyway. The worst that would happen, I figured, was that I would crash in the last few miles and walk more than I wanted/planned and that 'worst' was not the end of the world. I decided that I was willing to trade a crash and burn for their company and chatter as long as I could.

I was pleasantly surprised to still be feeling strong and still with them at mile 7. By mile 9, though, I called ahead to Sammy to use her watch for their intervals. At this point although my pace slowed from theirs I was ok. I kept up the 3 and 1 intervals just at a slower pace. We had run the first mile then turned on the interval timer. I had had it in my head before the race that I wanted to run 1 mile; do 3 and 1's for the next 11 and then run the last 1.1 mile. So when mile 12 came I finished my walk interval and ran the rest of the way home.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

The Distance Run

Sunday, September 18 will be my fourth running of this event which is now called the Rock N Roll Philadelphia Half Marathon. It is my favorite for mostly sentimental reasons as it was my first distance run. The weather is usually tolerable if not downright beautiful and the course is enjoyable. 5 miles through the city and 8 around the Kelly Drive/MLK loop between the Art Museum and the Falls Bridge. Despite my August struggles and lack of miles since then I am looking forward to the race.

I am in corral 15. I had delusions of speed when I registered for the event hoping for a 2 hour 15 minute finish. My best half marathon (November 2009) was 2 hours 17 minutes. My best on this course is 2 hours 25 minutes. Like I said I was somewhat delusional when I signed up. No big deal. I can always move back to start. I think that will be a game day decision.

What are my goals? By now you know first and foremost it is to have fun and finish. I should have no issue with either. I am looking forward to seeing the running group at the start and finish and despite my recent struggles I should have no issue finishing in the 4 hour time alotted. I'd really like to come in under 2 1/2 hours. Really not sure if I'm up to that or not but that's what I'd like to see.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

August is behind me

Fantastic 8 mile run today. I felt awesome before, during and after. I'm taking this a sign that I will recover and have three great half marathons coming up. After 5 miles I even toyed with the idea of doing the full marathon schedule of 15 for today. Only briefly though. I decided it was better to finish a strong 8 and carry the confidence into the coming weeks.