Sunday, September 15, 2013

Philly Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon Race Report

Made homemade vegetarian lasagne last night for two friends of ours, with garlic bread and salad.  We ate at 6, and while they went to a production of Les Mis, I stayed at home to read and go to sleep by 10pm.

Up at 5:45am, out the door with Stevie by 6:30 and on the train into Philly by 6:45.  We arrived at the starting area around 7:25 and immediately got in line for the Porta Potties.  We then stood in line for a solid 40 minutes.  It was truly the worst wait time I've ever experienced at a race, and because of it I missed the start of the race.  I was supposed to start in the first corral, but by the time I jumped into the sea of people, it was the 8th corral's turn to start.  

I know from experience how important it is to start in the proper corral.  I was kind of freaking out about it while in line, and for good reason.  Once running, I constantly had to dart right or left to get around people, and frequently had to slow down for several seconds while I waited for a space to open up so I could move around.  When I tried to pass people and it was going to be a tight squeeze, I tried to alert them by yelling "on the right/left," but almost every one of them had headphones in and couldn't hear me.

The first five miles were extremely frustrating. 

Once we hit Kelly Drive, there was a bit more room to navigate, but the dodging and weaving didn't stop entirely.  I'm proud that I never threw in the towel but kept trying to give it my all.  Because of this, I was still knocking out sub 7 minute miles towards the end and realized I still had a chance at a PR, but it would be close.

I wanted that PR badly, but as you can see I fell short by about a minute.  I did, however, achieve my secondary goal, which was to come in under 1:32:30.  Double that time for the full marathon is a BQ, so coming in under that time was a good confidence booster.  (Runner's World's race time predictor puts me at a 3:08:37 given today's time, though)

Overall I'm happy with today's performance.  I wish I could have bagged the PR I feel I deserved, but still feel I ran the best race possible given the circumstances.  I now have two months and two days to train harder and return to Philly to kick ass in November.  Stevie has already started recruiting friends for a full support crew, which excites me greatly because having people I know and love out there makes such a difference.

Keep reading, folks.  The next two months are going to get wild, I promise you that.

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