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Polar Dash Half Marathon (Read 1443 times)

juniordo1


     I came across the perfect winter training doldrum breaker! In Minneapolis, the Inaugural Polar Dash Half Marathon will be held on New Year's Day. I'm not really sure what to expect from a cold weather race but I think I'm going to give it a shot. I trained last year in the cold but never raced and I don't think the cold itself will negatively impact me. Snow and ice may be limiting factors. I ran yesterday in 18F temps and wasn't terribly uncomfortable but there were large stretches of country roads/shoulders that were icy enough to take 15 secs/mile off my time.

     

     I haven't perfected my layering yet. I was too warm on upper body and too cool on lower unit yesterday with the wind. I was wearing a short sleeved moisture wicking tech tee with a light North Face fleece middle layer with a windbreaker on top and compression shorts and sweats on the bottom. I think a little wind protection for my legs may be all that's required. A balaclava will probably get added to my winter gear as the wind made my eyes tear up which led to the tears freezing on my face.

     

    Any suggestions for maximizing comfort in the cold would be greatly appreciated. Any tips for racing in the cold would also be helpful.

    2013 -Sub 2:00 for 1/2 marathon


    barefootin'

      I like an ear band usually better than a hat.  If it is under 20F you might keep in on the whole time.  At higher temps I get too warm. 

       

      Last year I had a race at 15F and wore a technical fabric balaclava, cold-weather UnderArmor turtleneck, a fleece jacket, light long underwear, windstopper-type pants and some biking lobster gloves.

       

      In training you usually need more clothing than racing.  I start out races in the usual gear and after a couple miles I have to unzip the jacket and sometimes take off the balaclava and gloves.

      Bill Wagnon / stl

        A balaclava will probably get added to my winter gear as the wind made my eyes tear up which led to the tears freezing on my face.

          

         

        The pragmatist in me is thinking instead of treating the symptom (frozen face), treat the cause (tears from wind) with some sun glasses. Bonus, no one mistakes you for bank robber.

        Come all you no-hopers, you jokers and rogues
        We're on the road to nowhere, let's find out where it goes
        juniordo1


          The pragmatist in me is thinking instead of treating the symptom (frozen face), treat the cause (tears from wind) with some sun glasses. Bonus, no one mistakes you for bank robber.

           

           I am one of the unfortunate souls that cannot stand to run with sunglasses on. I don't train with them in any season. I have crooked ears and a crooked nose so I've never owned a pair of sunglasses that are comfortable. I'm too slow for anyone to think I'm a bank robber!

          2013 -Sub 2:00 for 1/2 marathon

          juniordo1


            I like an ear band usually better than a hat.  If it is under 20F you might keep in on the whole time.  At higher temps I get too warm. 

             

            Last year I had a race at 15F and wore a technical fabric balaclava, cold-weather UnderArmor turtleneck, a fleece jacket, light long underwear, windstopper-type pants and some biking lobster gloves.

             

            In training you usually need more clothing than racing.  I start out races in the usual gear and after a couple miles I have to unzip the jacket and sometimes take off the balaclava and gloves.

             

            I purchased an ear band a few weeks ago. I like that way better than a hat. It was 7F last year for the 5K and 10K.

             

            I think I'll try some light polypro long johns under the sweats today and see how that works. I'll have to look around for some wind stopping pants.

             

            I didn't unzip yestrday because it was windy and my windbereaker got soaked.I usually lose the gloves too and then I'm usually stuck carrying them in a pocket or suffed in my jacket.

            2013 -Sub 2:00 for 1/2 marathon

              As a fellow Twin Cities-ite...I know the coldness well.  I ran at SJU north of St Cloud in college and we ran one 16 miler at -20 and that is not counting the wind chill.  Once you get below 5 i recommend compression long tights, and regular running tights.  I throw shorts in there too if it is windy.  I always go with long sleeve compression, t shirt, loose long sleeve and a windbreaker on top.  I'll through a fleece only well below 0.  However it should be noted that you need more if you are not running more than 30 min because i find you can't get warmed up enough in that time

              2014 Goals:

              Not destroy my back while running.

              juniordo1


                Well, I wasn't going to taper for this half but I picked up a nasty cold so I haven't run at all so far this week. I'll try to get some light short runs in late this week and early next just to prime the system for running the race. My legs do feel fresh and ready to run so I hope I can keep this cold out of my chest.

                2013 -Sub 2:00 for 1/2 marathon

                juniordo1


                  Forecast for this race is calling for temps near 20 at the start with NW winds at 25mph with gusts up to 40mph. Its going to be a tough one.

                  2013 -Sub 2:00 for 1/2 marathon

                    Minnesotan here and I usually wear a long sleeve tech shirt and a Brooks Nightlife shell for my upper body down to zero or so. After that I will add another shirt, but no fleece.

                     

                    I have a cheap pair of Champion C9 running pants that I use from about 25 to zero and colder then that I have a pair of SportHIll pants that I wear. I have a pair of fleece convertable finger gloves when its around zero but use a cheap pair of stretch knit gloves warmer then that, hat and a home made balaclava. I made that from an old hockey sock of my sons. It works better then anything else I've used that could be bought from a store. I've tried wearing sunglasses but find they fog up all the time.

                     

                    You should be cold for the first few miles or you are dressed too warm.

                     

                    The pain that hurts the worse is the imagined pain. One of the most difficult arts of racing is learning to ignore the imagined pain and just live with the present pain (which is always bearable.) - Jeff

                     

                    2013 Goals:

                    5k = sub 21:00

                    HM = sub 100 minutes

                    Run = 3650 / 2 miles

                    Bike = 3500 miles

                    Swim = 150 miles

                    Race 1st HIM

                    juniordo1


                      Thanks for the tips Burnt Toast. I tried out my race gear today. I went with compression shorts, polypro long john bottoms, wind pants, tech tee, fleece mid layer, wind breaker jacket, and ear band. The wind wasn't even close to the range I will face Sunday but I was cold the first mile and a half so I think I'll be OK with the raging winds. I have no solution for the face at this time. I'll throw in my face mask from deer hunting if necessary. I was hoping for a PR but it's going to be a real challenge with the 40mph gusts.

                      2013 -Sub 2:00 for 1/2 marathon

                        Good luck in the Polar Dash HM. I'm always a little leary to run hard when its cold and potentially slippery. It snowed here yesterday and I haven't check the weather to see if it snowed there or not.

                         

                        The pain that hurts the worse is the imagined pain. One of the most difficult arts of racing is learning to ignore the imagined pain and just live with the present pain (which is always bearable.) - Jeff

                         

                        2013 Goals:

                        5k = sub 21:00

                        HM = sub 100 minutes

                        Run = 3650 / 2 miles

                        Bike = 3500 miles

                        Swim = 150 miles

                        Race 1st HIM

                        juniordo1


                          I ran this race this morning. I wasn't expecting it to be very fast because it snowed last night. The cource was icy and slushy in spots but it wasn't terrible. I didn't notice the wind much. I PR'd (2:06:56) by 5 1/2 minutes! I'd definitely run this one again.

                          2013 -Sub 2:00 for 1/2 marathon


                          Alive & Running

                            I ran this race this morning. I wasn't expecting it to be very fast because it snowed last night. The cource was icy and slushy in spots but it wasn't terrible. I didn't notice the wind much. I PR'd (2:06:56) by 5 1/2 minutes! I'd definitely run this one again.

                             

                            I was an impromptu pacer at this one and the course was definitely short.  I ended up with 12.85 on my Garmin.  Would've hated racing that one with all the 5K walkers we encountered after the first turnaround.  I told someone from the race that the course was short after I finished and his response was; "Oh well, close enough." WTF?!!?

                             


                            juniordo1


                              I was an impromptu pacer at this one and the course was definitely short.  I ended up with 12.85 on my Garmin.  Would've hated racing that one with all the 5K walkers we encountered after the first turnaround.  I told someone from the race that the course was short after I finished and his response was; "Oh well, close enough." WTF?!!?

                               

                              Yeah, I was talking to someone about the distance after the race. The turnaround on the second loop didn't seem to be where they said it was going to be. I would have still PR'd by 3 minutes assuming proper distance. A new PR on another course will require adiitional effort assuming proper length. I'm up for the challenge.

                               

                               I encountered a lot of walkers at the end of the first loop and had to weave through the walker/talkers. Most of the second loop was clear for slow guys like me.

                               

                              I'd still run this one again just because I like the idea of winter racing. An out and back course or point to point would be nicer than the two loops.

                              2013 -Sub 2:00 for 1/2 marathon

                              juniordo1


                                The whole race distance and the turnaround got me to thinking so I went back and looked at the course map and it seems maybe the turnaround was where the map showed it. I also found the USATF certification for the course. It was interesting that the distance was measured by "bicycle." I think the certification map is a little crude but clear in its structure. 

                                 

                                Man, like I didn't think about running and running related information enough already. Now I"m interested in race structures and certifications.

                                 

                                I really don't want to have a discussion abot GPS vs USATF certifications.

                                2013 -Sub 2:00 for 1/2 marathon

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