Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Route 66 Half Marathon

This past Sunday, November 22, I ran the Route 66 half marathon in Tulsa. Four years ago this was the site of my first marathon. I decided to run the 1/2 because I'm running a full in two weeks. So I wanted this to be a long tempo run, and to also try to run my best time in a 1/2. My previous best was run in Oregon in a 1/2 that I'm convinced was short.
I felt like I had a good chance to P R because my 12k last week went well, and I was able to hold a fast pace the entire race.
A cousin had died earlier in the week, and I attended his memorial service first. It was good to see friends and relatives there. After that I headed to Tulsa to check into my hotel. After checking in I went to the expo for packet pickup and to check things out. It's a nice little expo and I did see some friends there.
That morning it was a bit cool, perfect in other words. I took the shuttle to the start and met up with more friends, some running the full, others the half. I waited too long to get in the starting area, and got stuck around the 10 minute pace area. Not good. We're off, and in the first two miles I'm working my way around slower people. It was ok, but I would have like to have started a bit faster. My first couple of miles were around 8:30. Not good enough if I wanted to run under 1:41. As I cleared the crowds, and started to warm up, I began bringing the pace down. I was soon around 7:30 and worked on holding that. I never felt bad and in fact ran a few 7:10 miles when I realized that I was going to be cutting it close. When I made the final turn to the finish, I could see the clock inching to 1:41. I wasn't too worried, I knew I had a small chip cushion. I finished with the clock reading over 1:41. When I got my official time, it was 1:40:22. I met one goal, but missed another by 22 seconds. I could have qualified for New York with a time under 1:40:00. But that's ok, I'm not sure I could do New York next year anyway. I have two ultras near that time. I'm very satisfied with my performance, and looking forward to my next marathon in Sacramento in two weeks.
Congratulations to all my friends who ran and who met their goals.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Races & Training

Last week I ran the Race with Stars 5k. This has always been a good race for me and I like the fact that they don't give medals, they give gift certificates and tickets. I had a mild cold the days before the race and decided I would just run and try to be one of the first 300 who would get "an extra prize." Earlier in the year I had picked this race as a possible attempt at a P R. But that was before I decided to run the 24 hour ultra. Coupled with the cold I just decided to run by feel. I did just that and was pleasantly surprised that I still was under 22 minutes. Good enough for 3rd in Age group. Four tickets to a museum I've never heard of. And the extra prize, an LED bracelet.
Yesterday I ran the Race for Hope. This is a 12/5K run to benefit the Oklahoma Brain Tumor Foundation. I like this race and this was my 3rd time running it. I volunteered last year because of my pacing duties that night in the Mother Road 100. Yesterday a cold front came through just before the start. As I was driving to the site at Lake Overholser, I could see clouds and fog ahead. The sun was shining when I left the house. This was a good thing though, as it cooled the race off. I was running the 12k and I wanted to treat it as a tempo run for my half marathon next week. I started out slowly and then as I warmed up, began to pick it up. I wanted to hold around 7:30/mi and at times was below that pace. I felt good the whole time and finished just over 54 minutes. I didn't realize that this was a sub 7:15 pace. It ended up being good enough for 1st in age group.
After the race I went to lunch at church for the men's ministry. It was a good day including having to get a slow leak fixed on my car.
This morning I did a nice 10 miles of trails at Draper Lake. Cloudy, light rain, great run.
Looking forward to my half marathon next week, and my full at the California International Marathon in Sacramento. I've also registered for the Boston Marathon.