The Timp Half-Marathon starts nice and early—> 6 a.m. I LOVED the early start time because we avoided running with the hot sun beating down on us.
I boarded a bus at 4:30ish and got to the start with about 45 minutes to go before the gun went off.
I ate a piece of bread when I first woke up, a jam sandwich on the way to the race, this honey stinger waffle (about 20 minutes before the gun went off) and a bottle of gatorade. I think I may have had a tad too much before the race started because I felt pretty nauseated and really full for the first 5 miles of the race. You live and you learn. It is always hard for me to figure out exactly how many calories before a race will give me the right amount of energy while at the same time avoiding having too much in my stomach to run hard.
When we first got up to the start the moon was crazy bright and it was pretty chilly. I brought a sweatshirt and sweatpants to wear over my clothes and I was very grateful I did because even with those things I was cold.
I was happy to run into Heather, Amber and a few of our other friends at the top. I was starting to get nervous about the race as I was waiting at the top by myself but as soon as we started talking and catching up on life I felt at ease and ready to run.
We dropped our sweats off right before the start and moved to the starting line. I put in my headphones, made sure my shoes were double knotted and said a quick little prayer:)
The gun went off right at 6:00 and we were off. I started the race in second place and moved up to the first girl for about 4 miles. At about mile 9 a different girl passed by me and she looked incredibly strong. She ended up finishing about 110 seconds in front of me and she has some crazy fast marathon times too. As she passed by she said some really encouraging words to me, smiled and gave me a thumbs up. It was beyond nice and it pumped me up at a time that I needed it. After she passed me I was determined to not let anyone else pass me (and obviously try to catch up with her which didn’t happen:) but I did hold onto my second place.
I don’t actually remember a lot of things from the race but that always happens whenever I have a good race. It means that I am in the zone and pushing myself and focusing on hitting the paces I want and so I don’t really notice my surroundings. I went out really fast (mile 1 = 5:45) and told myself to hold onto that effort for as long as I could. It was too intimidating to tell myself to push that hard for the entire 13 miles but I just kept thinking to hold onto it for just one more mile and that turned into holding the same effort for 13.1 miles—> Although mile 9 was a tough one for me mentally and physically and I pulled back a bit.
There were also plenty of times along the way that I really wanted to quit. I started to tell myself that it would be okay to just pull back and call the miles that I did do already a ‘tempo run.’ When I had those quitting thoughts I lectured to myself that this sub-3 (that I crave so badly) is not going to come easy. I’ve got to do the hard things to get there. Also, the night before the race my mom gave me her usual pep-talk (I really will record her next one because they are that good) and I kept thinking about that the last few miles to help me to keep pushing.
I took one gu along the way and I started to eat it at about mile 6. I took a little bit at a time because my stomach wasn’t feeling super great and I couldn’t handle the whole thing all at once. I am glad I forced myself to eat one (even though I had no desire to) because it gave me some definite energy. I didn’t start hydrating until about mile 6 because the aid stations were pretty congested at the beginning. There was an early start time for this race if you were worried about not hitting the cut-off time to be out of the canyon and so it wasn’t until the second half of the race that I was able to grab some water.
The first 7 miles had a HUGE AMOUNT OF DOWNHILL with a few flat stretches and slight declines too. This downhill was great cardio wise for me but I remember thinking at the end of the 7 miles that my legs/muscles were shot. There was a lot of pounding in that first half of the race which hurt for the second half. The downhill sped me up for the first half but slowed me down for the second half. BUT the downhill helped me to really cruise in order to give me a great time. It was a great exercise for me in learning to push through wasted legs even though endurance wise I felt great… does that make any sense?
I was stoked to see the track because I had my people there in the stands and I knew I just had a little bit left to push. A race that ends at a track = a very good idea.
I just needed a second to catch my breath at the end but I didn’t have to do my usual ‘lay down on the grass because I felt like I was going to die after a race’ thing … baby steps.
The course was a bit long… the website for the race says that the course is measured out by them to be 13.36 miles long.
My garmin actually came up a little short for the length of the course (I hit 13.3 miles) or maybe I actually ran the tangents properly for the first time in my life. The last .3 I held onto a 5:49 pace and felt strong so that made me happy.
Josse made the last mile of the race awesome. She rode her bike to the race and would cheer me on and then ride her bike .25 miles ahead and wait there to cheer me on and continued to do that until the end. I loved seeing her smiling face and also to see my other really good friend (TOBY) along the way. I think I teared up when I saw both of them. Races get me all emotional. It’s weird.
My sweet mom. Don’t know what I would do without her and I get super excited to see both of them at the finish line of my races.
Danielle and I decided that we are going to do some of our training runs together and I cannot wait.
Everyone had a really great racing day!
I finished 2nd woman and 10th overall (men and women—> a total of 1337 runners).
I can’t thank you guys enough for all of the support along the way. I sure love this running community.
A few random things about the race:
1. It was my first time racing in the Brooks PureCadence 4s and I loved them. My feet problems are 100% gone and that 1.5 weeks off/recovery that I took must have just tapered me really nicely for the half-marathon. Speed bumps along the way in training are normal.
2. Last year I didn’t start running again until the beginning of August. I had taken a bunch of time off last summer due to injuries and mental burnout and so my training for the St. George Marathon started later on and I ended up running a 3:12 at the marathon. I think that with the base and times that I already have (and 9 weeks of work still to do) that I will definitely hit my goals… I just have to zone in on keeping myself injury free.
3. I haven’t been this sore in a long time. Ice bath + foam rolling + stretching were my best friends this weekend.
4. My goals for this week—> sleep and loads more water.
5. When my legs were done and wanting to quit, I focused my attention on pumping my arms (and then my legs just naturally had to keep up). It works every time.
And that’s a wrap. 9 weeks left until my marathon and I am feeling more motivated ever to get that sub-3.
What were two highlights from your weekend?
Favorite half-marathon course that you have ever done?
What time do you prefer races to start?
What are your running/health goals for this week?