Sunday, March 15, 2009
Tom King Half Marathon
Long day today. Got up at 3:30 am to get out the door by 4:30 to make it to Nashville by 5:30. Biggest concern was having something warm and somewhat waterproof for the race setup, then something to race in and then the cool down clothes. I volunteered for the set up crew for the Tom King Half Marathon. One of the first one's to get to the stadium, as it was being unlocked. Lot's of scrawny cats, one jumped out of the trash can and scared the crap out me.
Race set up was wet, seemed like it was raining harder than it actually was when you stood under a tent or tarp. I went through two sets of gloves, between the start and finish line. It wasn't really to bad, though I really felt for those volunteers who would be in it all day long. Got to go onto the Titans field as part of the finish line set up. Only thing I did was set up the tripods for the timing clocks and set one of the clocks out. The grass on the side lines was much nicer than the golf course grass, at least before all of the runners started trampling it.
Got my chip and shirt with plenty of time to change and get a warmup done. It was nice to have the van to change from the wet clothes into the race clothes. I went with shorts, under armour shirt, singlet over that, gloves and a hat. Lubed very generously because of the rain. I carried one gel to take before the gun and one at 6 miles. Only ran one mile or so to warmup and then headed to the start.
Plan for this race was to divide it into 3 separate races. First 4 miles to get onto pace, roughly 6:40. This was based on a soft goal of hitting 1:28, the B goal was a 1:27 and the secret A goal was a 1:26. Training indicated a 1:26 was possible. Next 4 miles were just to maintain pace and the final 5 miles hang on and push it home.
The race itself played out extremely well. The early miles were coming way to easy and I decided the A goal pace was doable and tried to maintain around a 6:35 or so pace. By 4 miles, this pace seem to be maintainable, and locked into pace. Tried to gauge my effort by those around me. The 3rd place female, stopped in front of me to tie her shoe and lost probably 20 seconds or more. She came blasting by me and I tried to hang with her but she was going just a tad to quick, around a 6:23 or so. Around mile 5 is where the leaders went by. That really pumped me up. I picked up the pace considerably and had to back it down. Saw FM2 and P, in the second big pack behind the leader and the 2-3 guys chasing him. Cool to see the fast guys at work. Took my gel at 6 miles and started back. This part of the race really seems to get me going and I almost have to hold back and not go to hard and go anaerobic. This is also the point where you start to share the pathway with everyone. Cool to see those you know and yell for them and have them yell for you. But, also pretty annoying when some won't give way and block the whole path. Plus, this is the part where you get to run through 3-4 puddles of water. Blah. Mile 9 on home was a fight. VP passed me and I tried to stay off his shoulder but lost contact. I was able to hold roughly 6:44 or so home which was a plus. Felt like I left everything on the road. I was spent when I hit the line. Not any fight left what so ever. Actually doubled over before the tunnel, because I felt like I was going to hurl. My clock said 1:27:22 which is over a minute PR. Chip time was 1:27:44, and the clock at the finish said 1:27:34 when I crossed.
Garmin read 13.15 miles. No way I did the last .15 in :40, so the 7:04 isn't right either. Actually would be 6:43 pace for that last 1.15 miles. So, I did pick it up slightly coming to the line.