Thursday, April 26, 2012

Earth Day 1/2 Marathon Pace report

As I awoke last Saturday to a cool, overcast morning, I knew it would be a day of making more dreams come true as I led the 1:35 pace group toward their goal in the Earth Day 1/2 Marathon. Temperatures were low, so I opted to go with the awesomest-looking outfit that would be comfortable--my red pacer singlet, courtesy of Zorbaz, and some black Twin Cities Marathon arm warmers.

After struggling with the single-cup coffee maker and having to show my numbskulled-ness to the guy at the front desk who explained to me how it worked, I ate a banana and drank some coffee before meeting another pacer to run to the start of the race. We got a nice warmup jog from the hotel and headed into the fieldhouse where the prerace festivities were taking place.

There was some lady leading people in a "warmup" of Zumba--some sort of crazy, dance-like thing that I didn't know was good for warming up for a half marathon. We then got a pep talk from the MN Pacers leader about how we'd better hit our pace or be no more than 30 seconds faster or we'd be in big trouble.

We lined up at the start, chatted with some runners, and were off. It was a pretty big race, but fortunately runners had lined themselves up well and I was able to settle into 7:15 pace pretty easily without having to dodge people.

My pace group was very nice--one guy in particular expressed appreciation multiple times during and after the race. The course was fine--not overly scenic but some nice stretches along the Mississippi and no killer hills. It drizzled a bit but nothing miserable.

At mile 7 I accidentally hit stop instead of lap on my watch. Luckily I caught it pretty quickly. I asked another runner what she had for time on her watch and I adjusted accordingly.

At about mile 10 I saw Laura--she was doing her long run and ran by to say "hi." I invited her to join our pace group for awhile, but she politely declined.

I kept a nice, even pace throughout the race and came through mile 12 a few seconds ahead of schedule. Then, at mile 13, I repeated a mistake I'd made before--trusting the mile 13 marker. According to my Garmin I was at 1:33:something. At that pace I would be at least 30 seconds fast, so I let up a little bit. Turns out the last 0.1 was more like 0.17. My final time ended up being 1:35:01. Close.

Saturday I pace the Brainerd Run For the Lakes Marathon--the 3:25 group. I hope to hit 3:24:59.

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