Friday, May 8, 2015

Lake Minnetonka Half Marathon: Pace Report

Pre-race game face
My second pacing gig of 2015 is in the books. For the second time in a few years, I jogged around Lake Minnetonka carrying a pacer sign, attempting to run even splits en route to a 1:35 finishing time.

 The weather was pretty nice, though a little humid for a half marathon. Laura and I had been camping for the previous couple days and had really been enjoying the warm temperatures and the sun. Fortunately for the runners, the sky was overcast on Sunday morning, keeping temperatures cool enough to be pretty comfortable.

At Lake Minnetonka Half Marathon I had the privilege of having a co-pacer, Mike. It's always nice having someone to share the pacing duties. Only having to carry the sign half the time leads to a less sore neck, and there's also someone checking on the pace meaning I don't have to look at my watch quite as often.

I also really like pacing the 1:35 group. Checking my pace on a pace band is fine, but it adds one more thing to keep track of, and when I pace the 1:35 group I can easily add 7:15 for each mile, eliminating the need for a pace band.

Finishing on time
The Lake Minnetonka course is nice with a lot of sections being along water. It's got enough rolling hills to keep things interesting, but there are no really steep or long hills. The only downside to running next to so much water is that if it's windy, it can really hit you. Sunday wasn't too windy, but even a moderate amount of wind can be bothersome when trying to control a cardboard pacing sign.

Mike and I had a nice time chatting and running pretty consistently at our assigned pace. We came through the finish right on time at 1:34:50. Runners were very friendly after the race, and I had several thank me for pacing. One guy even stopped his car in the parking lot to thank me.

It'll be a busy May for pacing the next few weeks. This weekend I'll be pacing the Fargo Marathon for the first time. I'm looking forward to doing a new race and notching marathon number 13. Then it's on to the inaugural Valley Fair Half Marathon, followed by the Med City Marathon.

Happy Running!

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