Monday, May 07, 2012

Cap City Half Re-Cap

Saturday (May 7th) was the Cap City 1/2 Marathon in Columbus, Ohio.  We'd (as pictured... my wife, myself and my friend Donnie) been thinking about this race since September and of the three of us, I was the most unprepared. 

My training did not go well.  Plagued with quadriceps tendonitis since early February, I was unsure until about 3 weeks before the race that I was even going to make it to the starting line.  Thankfully in the final three weeks, my quad shaped up and I was able to do it.

The day was supposed to be cool, in the low 60's, with sun throughout the morning and afternoon.  What we got instead was temps around 65 and about 85% humidity.  It was a killer.  I was sweating before we even started and I was soaked by mile 4.  It got so bad that at mile 11, I actually dumped water on me, which is something that I never do, to try and cool down.

Unfortunately, fluids were an issue.  The race was organized well.  The corrals were well executed.  As each wave (approximately 3,000 of the total 13,000 runners and walkers) went off, they held the next corral for a few moments to create some separation in the pack.  The race started on time.  The start and finish lines were great.  The entertainment was great.  But the fluid stations were a major draw back.  At one station (around 9 1/2), the station was completely out of water and electrolytes when I got there.  When I went for the electrolyte fluids, often what I received wasn't even enough to drink... just barely enough to get my mouth wet.  That would come back to haunt me later.

I wanted to run a smart race.  I wanted to enjoy the time with my friend Donnie, this was his first, and with my wife, also her first.  I wanted to not come out of the race injured (again).  But in the back of my mind, I continued to play with the idea of breaking the 2-hour mark.  I decided to just run for the first 6 miles and when we made the turn south on high street, I'd evaluate the my pace and the time and see if I could go for it. 

When we turned onto High Street about mile 6, it began an approximate 2 to 2 1/2 mile slight downhill course.  Evaluating my pace, I decided to go for it.  I was roughly only 2 minutes off of the 2 hour pace.  I was hoping the downhill would help me make up some ground.  The 6, 7,  and 8 mile splits weren't bad (9:47, 9:26, 9:29).  Even mile 9 was good. But just before the 9 mile mark, we rounded the corner and started back uphill.  This was trouble.  Then I hit a water station at about 9 1/2 that didn't have any water.  When I powered back up, my legs just didn't have any "get up and go" left.  Up until this point, I had run with my wife, Jackie.  This was the last time I ran with her.  I finished out mile 9 strong.  But miles 10, 11 and 12 would be hard.

I dropped almost a full minute off my pace.  I had hit the wall.  My lack of solid base had left me without any reserves.  I just didn't have anything left.  I was disappointed and felt defeated! But I gathered it back up and finished. 

Overall, I was disappointed with my time (2.07.55).  I am disappointed mostly because I know I can do better.  This is the slowest of my half marathons (Akron: 2.06.42 - Flying Pig: 3.03.52). But I was pleased with my effort.  I ran a smart race.  I waited to see if I could get my foot in the door on the time.  When it was time, I went for it.  I just didn't have the gas to carry it through.  That was due to being injured for three months.  Next time I line up, I'll be better prepared. 

Here are my splits (in case you care about such things):

It was a good day.  The course was nice.  I ran with my wife.  She actually beat me by 4 minutes... thanks to my pacing her for 9+ miles and creating her training plan. Actually she was/is a stronger runner than me right now.  When we run together, she sets a faster pace.  Hopefully once my mileage pops back up, I can tip that scale.  But she ran well!  I ran with Donnie!  It was great to see him finish something that 6 months ago he could barely even dream about.  Even a couple of months ago, he didn't think he could do it.  I was proud for him to see him with his medal around his neck!  He earned it!

Next for me: Chicago!  Actually, I already have a couple of miles in (3.1 miles today) toward that goal.  The Chicago Marathon is coming up on October 7th.  I'll be laying out my training plan today (I'm an overachiever...).  Gotta keep thinking about what's next!

Keep running friends!

1 comment:

  1. Congrats on another half. This sounds like one of those races that you took a lot from. Those lessons will mean the next one will be a tremendous experience!