>Look What I Can Do!>My PR at the St.Jude Half Marathon
I think I have just about driven my wife insane talking about how proud I am of myself for my PR at the St.Jude Half-Marathon Saturday. But damn it...I'm still stoked.
I went into it shooting for a 1:50. It was ambitious considering my training has been spotty and I've just been kind of running whatever I felt like but after a decent performance in the Tupelo 14.2 Miler I felt like if the stars aligned and I held my mouth just right, I could do it.
The sports gods must have smiled upon me Saturday morning because everything fell into place. The weather was perfect (sunny and 32 degree, very little wind) My plan was to stick with the 3:40 or 3:45 marathon pace group in order to keep myself in check on the pace. I started with the 3:45 group and the pace was too fast for that goal and I caught up with the 3:40 group in the second mile. I ran with them for a bit but was feeling good so my pace crept up and soon I was ahead of them. It worried me a little bit but I figured my pace would drop as I got tired and they'd catch back up and when that happened I would tag along again.
Through mile 9 I was still feeling good. By my Garmin I was still running miles below the pace I needed to finish with a 1:50 but then I got a scare. Over my left shoulder I see the 3:40 pacer. I'm thinking I must have miscalculated and I wasn't doing as well as I thought. She must have sensed my concern as I kept glancing over looking and informed me that she was 2 minutes ahead of pace. She was getting ahead of the group being led by the other 3:40 pacer so that she could take a bathroom break instead of having to play catch up if she stayed with them. That put me at ease and we had a nice little chat for about a half mile. However it may have done me more harm than good because knowing that I had a time cushion I must have eased off on the pace if you look at my splits. I went from mostly low 8's to mid-8's.
But with only about 4 miles left, mid-8's let me roll into the stadium at 1:48:00. Two minutes better than what I had hoped for.
I wonder now if I never saw the pacer would I have finished faster or did that small decrease in pace keep me from burning out around mile 11 or so. I've never kept a pace in the low 8's as long as I did Saturday. I also wonder if I would have really trained, followed a plan, kept a regular schedule would I have done better. (I know the answer to that)
I have another half on the horizon in late February so maybe the holidays won't derail me and I'll see another PR if I stick to a training schedule. It's a lot hillier course so this may be an apples and oranges type of thing.
Old, Slow, Happy
Hey man--you're gettin' it done!! Nice job on the PR. I hope to get back to running half soon. I think you and I would have a good race.
Way to go!!!
Do you know the feeling I know? When your legs have disappeared, and there is only your heart, your lungs, and your eyes skimming disembodied through the air? - Jeff
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