I know, I know, I owe a bunch of updates. This school year is really getting in the way of life in general, LOL. I’m trying to be better about it, though, I promise. I have several races coming up, and I need to blog about my training for accountability!
Yesterday, though, I ran in my 3rd half marathon – the McKinney Mini Half. It was the inaugural year for the event, so of course there were some minor glitches.
(flat mama for the race)
Shelly & I were up EARLY for this one, since it was about an hour from home. We met at 5:30 to carpool to the race site. We felt good. We had a plan. We got lost, then figured it out. We were parked by 6:45 in close proximity to the start/finish line. We found Sara and our other MRTT mamas.
Yes, those are strollers you see. Jessica & Alyssa ran the relay with their boys – Jess ran 5.5 miles pushing the double, and Alyssa ran 7.6 miles pushing a single – and they finished 2nd place female relay team, and 3rd place overall. They’re rock stars.
The race was supposed to start at 7:30. But, they didn’t even start setting up the timing mats until about 7:15, so we started about 10-15 minutes late. The start was really difficult for me – it was very narrow and there were a LOT of people. We started out faster than we had intended – we wanted to average 10:40 minute miles, and had been advised to do the first 3-4 at about 10:50… and our first mile was just over 10:00. I was worried, since our goal finish time was about 2:25, but we settled into a comfortable pace by mile 2. The course was fairly flat – even the big hills weren’t big – and there was only one area where it felt like we were really going up a hill.
Somewhere around mile 8, while we were on the one part of the course that forced us onto a windy sidewalk (instead of the street), I ended up getting ahead of Shelly. We’d talked about our race plan in the car, and agreed that if one of us got ahead that we should just keep running the race, so I never looked back to see how far ahead I was. I just made sure to stick to the plan, fueling every 3 miles or so, and watched my average pace on the Garmin.
There was a “surprise” hill around mile 12 – I didn’t remember it from the course elevation map, or from the beginning of the race (it was basically and out-and-back course). I powered through it, though, and despite a lack of attention from some volunteers almost causing me to go the wrong way right at the end, I finished strong.
Not only did I hit the target finish time, I crushed it! A 16 minute new PR! Official time was 2:20.53
After I finished, I discovered a few other small glitches: they had NO water at the finish line (only warm Powerade) and the only food available at the finish was some extremely greasy pizza. I really would have liked to have some water and a better variety of snacks – at least some bananas or granola bars or something.
Overall, I think it was a pretty great race for an inaugural event, and I’ll likely run it again.
What’s your preferred fuel during a race? If it were up to you, what would be provided in a post-race area?