12/07/2008

Race Report

We arrived in Memphis too late to pick up my packet for the half and my wife's for the 5K.

We both got up around 5:30 and picked up our stuff very early. The Half started at 8:00 and 5K at 7:00. I always error on the side of being early and it was probably a good thing since it appeared to start getting crowded as I left the packet pick up area. We were staying at the Westin on Beale street so both race starts were within walking distance.

I left the hotel and got at the starting area at about 7:30. Probably too early but that's ok. The temp at race start was about 30 with a breeze. I chose to wear gloves, shorts(kind of long though, not real short), and a t-shirt under a long sleeve under armour shirt. I froze my arse off before the race started, but knew it would get warm at 8:00. I did not wear my knit cap.

The race started in waves and I have to admit it was very well organized. I decided to hang in with a pace group that was running at an 5 hour marathon pace. My target was to beat a 2:30 half marathon.

There were lots of people with what I thought was way to much clothes, gloves, scarfs, sweats, etc. It was quite evident at mile 2 those folks thought so also since the road became littered with sweats, gloves, scarfs etc. There was a tree along riverside drive(running along side of the Mississippi river...great view) where people starting throwing their stuff in the limbs. It was started to look like a cross between a Christmas tree and clothes hamper by the time I went by it.

I continued at every mile to get a drink of powerade that was supplied at the stations. I did not wear my IPOD since it was forbidden by the race. There were still some idiots that decided the rules did not apply to them and wore them anyway. The announcer must have reminded everyone about 20 times before the race. I don't like the rules, but at least I did abide by them.

At mile 6 I realized that I was feeling pretty good. Legs weren't getting tired, breathing pretty easy. I decided that sometime I am going to pick up my pace, I did that at mile 8. I passed the pacers I had been following and lengthened my stride a little. The last 3 miles are very hilly, kind of like a giant roller coaster. The wind picked up the last few miles and was gusting at a pretty good clip.

I am happy to say that I finished officially at 2:25:37, a 11:07 pace!!! This is much better than last years showing of 2:45, and alot faster than I had anticipated. The following are the reasons I think that I did better:

  • I watched what a ate alot better this year. I still ate some junk from time to time, but not as much as last year. I made a point to eat fruit and veggies as often as possible.
  • I stayed hydrated
  • I brought along some clifs shot bloks and ate a packet each 45 minutes.
  • Last year I caught a bad cold and did not run much the last 10 days before the race.
  • Most importantly I really think that running where I live really improved my time. I had not run any of my long runs the past few weeks at anything less than 11:20 but as I have mentioned several times, I live in a very hilly area. The race I ran yesterday had hills, but nothing like home. So yes I will admit, hills are my friend now.
The folks that organize the St. Jude Marathon/half Marathon do a very good job. Everything went very smooth. I would recommend it to anyone.

Thanks to everyone that checks up on me and passes on words of wisdom and encouragement. I'm going to lay off until Wed or Thursday and then go for an easy run. I would like to run in another half marathon soon, just not sure where.

6 comments:

Nikemom said...

Excellent! Way to go. :D

Debbi said...

Great job, Adam! You're a real inspiration.

lindsay said...

congrats on a great race! you really blew by your goal time. very nice!

P.Hill said...

Well Done Adam and even better you beat the last time. Congratulations!!!!!!!!!!

Amanda said...

Congrats! Just saw your blog and have to give a little Woooooooo Pig Sooooie!!!!!!!!

Mary Gee said...

Very good. Excellent. That is great.