Well, another race rolled around, as well as another storm! The night before my 2nd of 3 half marathons brought rain. We’d had ideal fall weather for at least a week before – sunny skies, temperatures in the 60s and 70s. But alas – it was coming up on race day, so the weather just can’t cooperate!
At least it wasn’t raining at the start of this race. A dense fog hung over the area, and surprisingly some of it was still visible at mile 12! This was the first time I ran this particular half marathon, and they do a really cool start, including a firing squad shooting flares. That was awesome – and we even had to dodge the “bullets” or “shell casings” from the flares as we burst out of the starting gates. We had quite a crowd, as they started the 5K, 10K, and half marathon races all at the same time. I believe it totalled about 800 runners.
It was cold again, about 40 degrees. I wore long pants, long top, jacket, gloves, and ear covers again. I know, I know – I seem to wear the same outfit for each race! But it’s comfortable clothing and I stay WARM!
I settled into a nice pace from the beginning, trekking over dirt roads that would have been perfect for Vibrams! I can’t wait to do a race in them, instead of my old Nikes! Slowly but surely, I’ll get there. The race was basically a big box course, and as we rounded the 2nd stretch, BAM – headwind! We were running out in the open, so there was no shelter. For awhile I tried “drafting” behind some runners in front of me, but I like having my own space. So I faced the wind on my own. After about 5 miles of direct winds, we finally hit the other stretch and started heading away from the wind! Thank goodness! That bad news was that the wind caused me to mess up my form a little bit, and my right knee and hip were starting to hurt. Darn it! If it’s not one problem, it’s something else. So I cranked up the Metallica and just ran through it!
The end of the course had a little hill and I managed to get up it quite nicely, passing several folks in the process. I was tired, but had some energy to sprint across the finish line (the motivation from the boyfriend helped, too)! My time was better than the last half marathon (right about 2:00). I still haven’t beaten my best time, but I’m getting closer. I’ve got one more half this year, the same race where I got my PB, so we’ll see what happens!
After crossing this finish line, we had to sprint off to the next sporting event – a soccer tournament! Luckily I didn’t have to play, just sit in the crazy cold and wind to help cheer. And…they won!! So all in all, it was a great Saturday.