Sunday, November 1, 2009

Monster Dash Half Marathon RR

Official Race Results: Time: 1:37:10
Overall place: 135 out of 2644
Division Place: 7 out of 310
Gender Place: 22 out of 1565

Finished with a 22 second PR-Am I happy about this?? Kind of...

Ok, First of all this is what we had to drive through to even get to the race.

I was not in the best of spirits as we were traveling 35 mph for what was going to be a 6 hour drive. I was highly second guessing why we were even doing this and my desire to run was very low!! As we got further south the snow turned to rain and wind and the forecast showed for no precipitation in the morning so I was feeling a little better. We arrived at our hotel in Minneapolis around 10:30pm and I quickly got the kids into bed and laid out my race stuff for morning. Race start was at 8:30 am and we were close to the starting line so plenty of time to get a decent sleep.

The next morning I got up at 5:45. This is what time I always get up so nothing different. I’m never hungry race morning but I forced down half of an English muffin with peanut butter and half a banana. I had about 4 ounces of coffee and no other drinks. (I usually stop drinking anything after 6 pm the night before a race and drink almost nothing in the morning) Nobody has to go to the bathroom more than me!! I got dressed and listened to the wind howling out the window. I quickly looked up the weather forecast and saw - Temp 35 degrees, realfeel 23 degrees, winds WNW @ 22 mph with gusts to 29 mph. Ickk! Cold wind. My favorite!! My attitude was already going downhill! My husband on the other hand was just geared up for a great time. This guy never stresses about anything (a very good match for me). He wasn’t even wearing a watch for the race and could care less how he finished.

Bad Cell Phone pic-sorry!

We made it to the race and tried to stay warm for a bit in the heated outdoor tent. My feet were already cold and I put my handwarmers in my gloves. I knew I would warm up when we started running but I was really starting to get cold! We made our way to the starting corral about 15 minutes before race start. There were signs for projected finish times of 1:35 and 1:40. I opted to move up to the 1:35 even though this would be a stretch for me so I could line up with my hubby. Normally we would never start by each other but I needed to use him as a human blanket to keep me warm. It is about this time I start scoping out the people around me and comparing myself to them. To my left stood Miss Boston. No kidding, she had a B.A.A blue and yellow Adidas jacket, a yellow hat and the Adidas Boston shoes that have yellow accents with royal blue laces. To my right was a playboy bunny. My husband got two punches in the arm for even standing next to her. I did notice she was wearing Nike Lunaracers so I was guessing she was a fast playboy bunny! In front of me was a guy and a girl both in mens white briefs with capes and nothing else (She had a sportsbra on too). BRRR! This girl also had the most amazing abs I’ve ever seen. I thought about asking if I could feel them but I thought that might be a bit creepy! Also, in front of me was one of the 1:35 pacers dressed as Catwoman! Next to her, none other than Steve Prefontaine. His costume was awesome and he pulled it off so great. We were only about 3 seconds off the start line so as soon as the horn went off we took off.

Mile 1 -7:17
I lost my hubby immediately. He was off like a racehorse (he loves to run a terrible positive split). I felt good and stayed in the middle of Miss Boston and the Playboy bunny. Mile one was North so we had some effects of the wind but still enough people to provide shelter. I was aiming for about 7:25-7:30 for mile one so I was a little ahead of pace but feeling good.

Mile 2 – 7:19
Still feeling good but the course was turning west and into the wind. My tendency with wind is always to speed up and push through it which is not smart at the beginning of a half marathon.

Mile 3 -7:11
This was faster than I wanted to run this mile. I was still dealing with wind which meant I was actually pushing harder than this pace and I started to panic ever so slightly about burning out. I generally have a pretty good finishing kick if I can keep my pace slow enough in the first few miles. The first water stop was also at the end of mile 3. I opted to take it from the last guy. Everyone was holding out 2 glasses, one in each hand, he had one glass and just as I reached for it, he turned his body to grab another and ripped it out of my hand. I heard him shout “ I’m sorry “ behind me and I’m sure he felt bad but this meant no water for me until mile 5.

Mile 4- 7:19
We were headed south around the lakes now and the wind was no longer in my face. Miss Boston had left me in the dust as apparently she was not dressing up for Halloween and actually had run Boston! I was still right behind the 1:35 Catwoman and Playboy bunny was to my right. I was warmed up by now except for my hands and the cold was no longer a factor.

Mile 5 – 7:10
Again, this mile was faster than my goal pace of around 7:20-7:25. I could feel I might pay for this later and mentally the negative thinking began.

Mile 6- 7:23
I could feel myself tiring a bit here and decided to take a powergel. I’ve generally only taken one at mile 10 of a half but I tried earlier in the marathon and it worked well. It was right around here I started passing people like crazy. I couldn’t figure out how so many people were in front of me. Apparently we had joined with the 10 mile and these were the slower 10 milers. My God, I was breaking through chains of people who were practically holding hands all the way across the road. Definitely had to break stride many times.

Mile 7- 7:30
Still passing people and I was beginning to get more tired. I had run much of this same course on the marathon but somewhere in the last 4 weeks there must have been an earthquake that caused the earth’s plates to shift and filled the course with way more rolling hills than I remembered. I would generally pick hills over flat any day but I was really noticing them today.

Mile 8- 7:10
Gel was working and I was picking up pace again. The turn around was up around mile 9 so I was passing the leaders coming back toward me on the other side of the road. I really wanted to cut across and join them here. I saw Captain underwear and his significant other run by. Man, they were cruising! I was still with the 1:35 pacer but she seemed a little fatigued and I knew she was off pace. Playboy bunny would pass me on every hill and I would pass her back a minute later.

Mile 9-7:30
The timing mat was at the 9 mile marker and this was also where you turned back although we got to run the other side of the lakes to the finish. Right after I turned around the wind hit me straight on. The half marathoners were very spread out by this point and I had to barrel into it. We were still flooded with 10 milers but they were all running much slower and you couldn’t use them for a windblock because you had to continually weave around them. I lost the 1:35 pacer behind me and I knew she was not going to finish in 1:35. Playboy bunny and I were still swapping back and forth but I was absolutely flooded by negativity by this point. I was tired and I did not think I could keep this pace into the wind for 4 miles. I REALLY wanted to quit!!

Mile 10-7:22
Somehow I was holding pace and opted to take my second gel. I had nothing positive going on in my head at all. I knew I was ahead of my PR pace and even this was not motivating me. I was hating every minute of this race. This was so much in contrast to my recent marathon in which I was in pure bliss the whole race. Right after I passed the 10 mile mark, it happened! I was wearing fitted running pants but they had a slight flare leg. I’ve worn them before and I love them. As I was running into the wind my right foot hit the back of the flare of my left leg and I fell and rolled off the course. Now by fell, I mean fell hard!! Playboy bunny actually stopped and shouted “Oh my God, Are you OK!” I said “yes” which were the only words we ever exchanged on the course. Now…… I never swear!! Honestly, my kids have never heard me swear, ever!! I occasionally write it on paper but it never comes out of my mouth. I swore and I swore loud. Four letter profanity poured out of my mouth and after it came out of my mouth I repeated it under my breath for the next 15 minutes. I got up and felt instant pain. My pants were ripped up the back on the bottom, I had some nice road rash on my right hand and I had hit my left elbow, right knee and right hip, not to mention bruised pride. This was terrible timing for a fall. I was looking for any excuse to quit this race and it had just been presented to me.

Mile 11-7:50
This of course included the fall and a nice walk break recovery. I think I lost about 30 seconds deciding whether I would keep going or give up. I won the battle and kept going. Problem is, I generally get a rush about this point and start picking up the pace. No rush today. I didn’t care one little bit.

Mile 12 -7:29
Still going. Almost done. Thank God!! I am sooo sick of this race.

Mile 13 – 7:20
One more stinkin’ cold mile into the wind and I get to take these stupid ripped pants that are driving me crazy off!!

Final .2 – 6:38 Done!!

So, I got my PR but my husband and both Miss Boston and the Playboy bunny beat me. My Garmin showed 13.18 exactly since I did some weaving which had me finishing at 7:22 pace according to it. The race was truly a great course, the atmosphere was awesome! The finisher medal and jacket were the nicest I’ve gotten all year. I will most definitely be back next year. I just plain had a sucky attitude! I was crabby in the start corral and I was crabby in the finish chute. I think I had the physical ability to run a 1:36. This was my secret goal which is probably why I’m a little disappointed. I gave up on myself! If I could run a 6:51 final mile of my marathon I could certainly have matched that today if I went all out. For now, my physical ability stands at 1:37:10. In retrospect, I really am proud of myself. I made a huge improvement on my half marathon time this year and I finished up my racing season with a PR! I am in some pain today and have a huge bruise on my right side. I think I will reward myself with the second 2 day break from running that I’ve taken since April.

Congrats to all the other runners who celebrated Halloween with a race! I can’t wait to read all your race reports!!


Suzy said...

Congrats on the PR. Kudos to you for pushing through even when you weren't feeling it. The fact that you kept going means more than anything else!

Genesis said...

yikes, sorry bout the fall. i think everyone has a pass once in a while to yell out a lil four letter word :) im sure if that happened to me, it would have been more than four letters and 15 minutes.

congrats on the PR. and thank you for the words of encouragement.

Rookie on the Run said...

Congratulations on your PR! I can't even imagine what it must be like to run in that kind of cold! If it's under 60 degrees here, it's considered "cold".

That fall sounds like a harsh one! I'm glad you were able to pick yourself up and still beat Miss Boston and the Playboy Bunny. :)

TMB said...

Congrats! Glad the fall didn't take you out of it. Talk about determination! Great job!

TX Runner Mom said...

Congrats on the PR! I had to laugh, because I am the same way with the bathroom. I do not drink anything on race morning! So sorry about the fall...but, you got back up and still PRed!

robinbb said...

Congrats on a PR. Yuck on the fall. When I fell this summer, I cried for a few miles, more from frustration that I fell in front of people than the pain. Way to go in not quitting. Your husband is a machine.

aron said...

AWESOME job on the speeeedy PR!

Lisa said...

Wow. Sounds like a crazy race, but congrats on the PR!! Hope you warmed up quickly!!

Christina said...

Wow! You are fast. You got a PR and you fell and it was freezing cold?! You are amazing.
Great job!

Mel -Tall Mom on the Run said...

"thought about asking if I could feel them but I thought that might be a bit creepy" OMG I would have the same thought.. Women with abs are WEIRD.

GREAT GREAT race recap. I had the same negative emotions during my race, but I was ALONE so that made it even worse.

To FAll, get up and rock the race, you are a stinkin Hero. I would be yelling 4 letter words too!

Hugs to beating, hubby, playboy bunny and Boston!

Katie A. said...

You write a great race report! I have to figure out how you people get your mile splits off your Garmins - I can't figure it out!
You have a 1:36 in you! I did it this summer and I haven't been back there since! It's in you though! :)

Jenn said...

Reworded my post just to clarify that my husband, playboy bunny, and Miss Boston all kicked my *ss not vice!

26.2 Princess said...

Awesome PR! Great report! I would love to run a half that fast someday!

Looks like you are running halfs leading up to Boston. I'm signed up for the Houston full in January, but am rethinking that now. My recovery from Chicago is taking a long time, and I don't want to go through this again before Boston. I may slip in a few halfs between now and April and work in long runs without the pressures of a race.

I look forward to reading about what your training plans are leading up to it!