Well, I ran another one. I had a choice of running Saturday in the 20K/30K of the Strider's Distance Series...the last in the three race series, or run in Sunday's Anheuser-Busch Colonial Half Marathon…a half that I ran last year and remembered having fun doing it, even if it doesn’t hand out Bling. But why race two weeks in a row when I’m suppose to be recuperating? My plan for this week called for a 10 mile long run and I figured running 20K or 13.1 miles would fit kind-a-sorta. What’s three more miles? I decided on the Half.
I should have picked the 20K because Saturday was absolutely gorgeous…sunny skies and cool temps, where as Sunday turned out to be a dismal cold drizzly day. But, I drove up there…got lost a few times…registered and waited around for the 1:00 pm start. I was surprised to see Steve there ready to run…he had just ran the 30K yesterday and was here today to do the half! He is an amazing runner! The start line is about half a mile from the finish, so I ran my warm up jog to the start line and waited around under the overhang of some large trees to keep out of the drizzling rain.
Finally the race starts and we are off on the rolling hills course…rolling hills that I didn’t notice very much last year but this year was very apparent. I noticed that going uphill was okay but going downhill put a lot of stress on my recovering leg. My goal for the race was to treat it as a training run for the upcoming Shamrock Marathon in mid-March. I wanted to see if I could maintain a 7:30 pace which would bring me in around 1:40. The first three miles wasn’t bad and I was almost spot on with a 22:09…the first mile was faster than I wanted, but then the wheels starting falling off with the downhills really taking a toll on my leg and was affecting my stride. So I decided to pull it back a bit especially on the downhills. By the turnaround at mile 6 I had slowed quite a bit and it wasn’t fun anymore. I was just counting down the miles…I would be slow but I was determined to run the whole way…no stopping or walking even the downhills. We finally arrive at the front of Kaplan Hall…the finish is around the back, up a ramp and inside…and I kick it in a bit around the turns, up the ramp and across the finish in 1:51:37. Not the time I envisioned but it was done and I had run all of it. But it did give me a realization that I still had a long way to go before I was even ready for a marathon, so I deferred my Shamrock marathon registration to next year. No marathons this spring but by the fall I expect to be ready. In the mean time I will work on my long runs, endurance and speed with a few races sprinkled here and there to check my progress.
There were 62 finishers in the Male 50-54 age group and 735 total finishers
Overall finish place was 318 of 735
Age group finish place was 30 of 62
Time: 1:51:37 for an overall pace of 8:29 per mile
Happy running every one!