- Training for Boston? Nope
- Running double digits? Not really. Well, I had one 10 mile run in the last 4 months.
- Well rested? Let's simply say that I really should work on that whole 8 hours thing.
- Healthy? Yes? A person gets a little winter cough now and then. Sure, healthy.
- Easy Course?
Easily influenced into doing stupid things.
I arrived at around 9:00 and was going through the typical pre-race steps (bag pickup etc). Eventually bumped into Luau. We were waiting on one or two others, and eventually ran into Jeremy just before heading down to the race start.
|Me, Jeremy, and Luau before the race|
My plan, if you could call it that, was to run the first half somewhere between 9:30-10:00 and then slow down when necessary on the hills later in the race. Chip timing provided splits at 5, 10, and 13.1 miles. For the first five miles, I was definitely on plan - 47:49 (9:39). I actually remember thinking at around the 10k mark - "this course isn't that bad". Lots of rolling hills and downhill stretches made it pretty easy to maintain a 9, even 8-handle at times. But I knew I'd need to start slowing down as I approached the 10 mile mark.
Just before the 10 mile mark there was a huge hill just after a water-stop. I took one look and started walking. First, 10 miles was the longest I'd previously run, and I knew that I'd need to the breaks if I wanted to even get to 16. Second - this hill was steep. Part of me just automatically reverted to VT50 mode, and began power walking without thinking. This was fine by me. I clocked in at the 10 mile mark at 1:38:33 (9:52).
Over the next few miles, I came to understand why many people consider this race more challenging than it's New England Winter counterpart - Stu's 30k. The hills just don't stop. None of them are particularly brutal, but they just keep coming. I had quite a few walk breaks during this section - playing telephone pole tag and just running how I felt. The half-marathon mark was 2:15:02 (10:19).
The last few miles of this course are actually quite nice. If you have anything left after the hills. I thought I'd try to get a 9-handle back for the last 2 miles, but kept running into some back cramping that slowed me down to a walk several times.
At the beginning of the race, I told Luau & Jeremy to look for me around 2:40, and so I finished in around 2:46:13 (10:24), just about where I thought I'd be.
Happy with this race for several reasons - see the check list above. My achilles and post-tib were a little sore on Monday, but that's to be expected with a big jump up in mileage and all those hills.
Now I'm really looking forward to Stu's 30k in March, so I can really compare the two races.
Until next time - run, run, run.