Showing posts with label half marathon. Show all posts
Showing posts with label half marathon. Show all posts

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Race Recap: Kansas Half Marathon

Holy Moly, I hate the new blogger set up.

I'm sure it rolled out like a long time ago, and I just haven't been on since then.  I mega fail.

ANYWAY, I need to recap the Kansas Half Marathon which was....ummm...April, 22nd?  Yeah....that sounds right.  Because I ran RTP on the 14th and it was a week later....

YEAH, you read that correctly, I did two half marathons in two weeks.  Like what what?  I know there are people out there who do like full marathons back to back, but honestly that sounds absolutely horrific to me...and 2 halves in 2 weeks was a lot physically on my weakling body.


Sunday, the 22nd was the Kanas Half Marathon in Lawrence, KS, a week and a day after the Rock the Parkway half marathon.  A week and a day after I ran into so many fueling and knee problems, and struggling to finish 20 minutes over my goal time.  So I was mentally prepping myself more than anything. 

I wasn't quite sure how my running schedule should be the week in between races, so I did a bunch of cross training and kept my mileage moderately and increased my speed.  I invested in Cliff Shot Blocks for the race to avoid my fueling issues, but I did fail to eat.  Except some small cookie thing that was in my packet. 

I met my Marathoning Mate Megan before the start, and we decided it would be best to use the porties before the gun time, but the lines were SO LONG.  It was determined that it was best to just start late, so we waited and waited and waited.  We were running to the start when the gun went off, and ultimately lined up with the correct pace group and started on time....but it was close enough to give me anxiety.

Right off the bat, I felt great.  No knee pain, I had energy and didn't feel dehydrated.  The only complaint I had was the wind was pretty strong.  The first five miles kind of flew by, except for a climb that I have climbed many times in the past. 

We ran up Daisy Hill, on KU's campus.  It's the hill where all of the dormitories overlook campus, it's a fairly steep incline and stretches for what seems like forever.  I lived atop that hill for a year.  Do you EVER think I ran it ONCE? Nope.  Never even dreamed of it.  I walked it several times, but I thought it would kill me.  Most of the time, I hopped the bus and had it drop me off in front of the cafeteria.  Where I ate myself the cliche 15lbs heavier.

So there I was, three years later, and nearly 30lbs lighter, running up it.  

Miles 6-7 were REALLY fast.  We were downhill and had a tail wind.  I felt really good.

My only complaint about this race is that there are over a thousand runners, and we run on basically the lead runners can get slowed down by gobs of runners getting through aid stations or passing each other.  Or high fiving them...which is what I did.   So maybe it's a toss up, I really enjoyed high fiving all the lead runners, and cheering them on very personally. But wow, does it make you feel slow.

The biggest problem I had with the sidewalk cluster is that whatever pack you were in when you got it, was the pack you were stuck in, because trying to pass people was impossible especially as you approach mile 7 because you turn loop around and switch directions.  So the sidewalk is split in two directions with runners, one pack still hitting the front miles and the other pack on their way back to the finish.  

I ended up getting a wicked bad chub rub around mile 7 also, and it was gnarly.  I think because of the wind, my legs couldn't warm up and they weren't sweating like they normally do, which is gross but prevents the chaff.  I had to stop to ask a pacer for something to alleviate the pain.  

I also had to stop a lot because every time I hydrate while running, I am getting really bad side cramps when I try to resume running.  Anyone have this issue?

Finishing after all the side cramps from hyrdrating was pretty freaking brutal, but we did it...and Megan is the ultimate trooper.  She stayed with me, when she's a super speed demon and probably could have finished 20 minutes before our final time.

Megan, is the best.

This week we will finish Running with the Cows Half Marathon, to close out the 39.3 series!!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Race Recap: Chicago Half Marathon

The time has recap on ChicaaaGOOO!

My alarm went off at the ungodly hour of 4am, after a sleepless night.

We rode the L down to the shuttles, and then took shuttles to the race start. We arrived at the start around 6:00am, with plenty of time to check gear, get stretched out by a PT and use the porties.

Katie and I eagerly followed the 2 hour pacers to our corral, and waited for the gun. I felt like s fish out of water. I have ran my fair share of races, but never anything this large and this thick.

I expected the first few miles to be thick with people, but eventually would thin out like all other races. In retrospect, I think the sheer volume of entrants gave me anxiety. There were people literally everywhere.

Around mile 4, I got really nauseated and goose bumpy. I urged Katie to enjoy her first half, while I fought stomach issues. I got my stuff together, and tried to make up for time lost. Katie and I were clocking 8:40s and 9s, and I was hoping to finish in under 2 hours.

The next few miles are kinda blurry. It is a VERY fast course. I will take this time to mention that I have secretly been ignoring some pain in my ACL. Spare my the lecture, I know.

It was around mile 8, where the pain in my right knee became nearly unbearable. It'd amazing what you can push through, because I hadn't really noticed that I wasnt really weight bearing and relying on my left leg. My hip flexors started barking in my left leg from the added weight.

At mile 8, is also where I realized that if I was struggling this much in a half that a full in a month is probably not the best idea ever. So my eyes swelled with tears, as I tossed back shot block after shot block trying to get enough energy to finish.

The volunteers, aid stations, spectators and organization were all absolutely amazing. It was a glorious race course along the lake coast, a beautiful day and just awesome. It just wasn't my day.

At the end of the day, I finished the Chicago Half Marathon but I can't help but be disappointed. How often do I get opportunities like that? Like never, and I was underperformed. I feel like I choked, or my body let me down. Then I was like hum WAIT...YOU FINISHED THE CHICAGO HALF MARATHON!!

Sooo yeah it might not be the best ides to:
1. Run a half marathon while still on antibiotics
2. Ignore ACL pain
3. Mentally defeat yourself

But running is a learning experience, and I had an amazing trip and spent good times with amazing people who I love, so how can I be sad about that?

Monday, September 12, 2011

Hold On Tight


And I am exhausted. Like seriously exhausted. Ok, ok. Where do I start?

Friday night, Logan and I left for Chicago at 7PM and road tripped up there. A whopping 9 hours later, we arrived. In case you can't do math, we arrived around 3:30AM.

I bet reading that just made you tired, huh? Well we are just getting started. Saturday morning, started like every Saturday morning should: Bacon Cinnamon Roll. Yes, puhhhleaseee.

Lemme back track a bit here, my besties live in Chicago and they planned this whole thing. Katie, Molly and I were in a band, kinda, but that's a whole notha post. We all went to grade school with Mikey, who also met us and would race with us....and eventually kick our butts.

They live in Wrigleyville, so Logan was in awe of one of America's original stadiums.

Then it was time to make our way down to packet pick up. I was so excited to ride the L, but apparently I am the only one who gets stoked about public transportation.

Pick up was at Navy Pier, and very well organized. A+ work Chicago. We had to work out transportation, buy some socks and gels.

By this time, we'd worked up a mean appetite. Introducing Lux Bar, as Katie describes it: "Fancy Bar Food" and yup! Good. Best truffle fries evarrrr. Carbs are acceptable before a race. Don't judge me.

Obviously there was some shopping and then more eating. But that is enough for today.

When was your last road trip?
Have you ever been to a BAD packet pick up?
Do you use public transit?

Wednesday, June 08, 2011

Yes, and there ain't no stoppin'

Saturday was the ever so famous Hospital Hill Half Marathon.  Yes, the one of infamy.  Oh you haven't heard of it?  Well it sucks and I love it, and as long as I can crawl I will be registered.

I need to recap this race for you, and I want to do it the best way possible.  The only way I can think of is to break it down mile by mile for you. So, as I sit here nakey at my desk since I just got home from the gym and refuse to shower, I will do just that.

Mile -1:  Gun time for this race is at 7:30, so I planned to get there at 6 am.  Learning from my mistakes from last year and at the KC Marathon, I knew to avoid the popular bottleneck highway exit and I knew to avoid trying to park in their lot.  I parked exactly where I did for the KC Marathon, walked a mile to the KC REGAP booth.  Everything was going according to plan.  I was nervous and excited.  I LOVE this race.  Only draw back: it was 85 degrees at 7am and you could cut the humidity with a knife.

Mile 1:  Gun time was really weird, they narrowed the corrals too much and all the runners couldn't fit next to their pace groups.  So I just kinda said "whatever" and mooshed in, even though I run better with a pace group and I so longed for a PR.  Less the never, I started.  The first half mile is a gradual incline, followed immediately by a nice downhill. At the end of the mile, was our first aid station sponsored by my good friends at KC Running Company.9:29

Mile 2:  This is the mile that starts the namesake of the road race.  You split up McGee and begin a climb that goes one for blocks.  There's a very steep blatant in your face hill at 2.2 and then once you get to the top, you don't recover because it's a gradual incline over the next mile.  I then realized I needed to pee and was feeling really crummy due to the heat-I srsly thought about taking the 5k turn off. 10:07

Mile 3:  Our next aid station was right around mile 3.3, and I had to use the porties and bad.  I jumped in and out. Finally, race organizers that understand the importance of porties and frequency.  I burst open my portie door and felt like a new woman, I gulped some hotorade and made up for some lost a big way. 10:21.

Mile 4: A breeze.  I rocked out some Shakira, flattest mile of the course. 9:16

Mile 5:  The 10k turn around was right before the mile marker, and I slightly envied them because it was only getting hotter.  There's a monster mountain in this mile, you veer a little to the right and go up a hill that takes you right to Nelson Atkins Museum.  It was AMAZING that they put an aid station smack dab in the middle of this baby.  I walk through the stations, so it was nice to walk through sprinklers. 9:58

Mile 6:  Around this time I settled in with the 2:15 pace group, and knew I wasn't going to PR.  I GU'ed the first time, soaked up the sprinkler stations and anxiously awaited the 10k check in.  Until I saw a girl my age receiving CPR.  Seriously? AAAHHH.  She was bagged and everything, and it freaked me out.  She looked to be in better shape than me too, but just laid there limp. I really hope she's ok, so far I haven't heard anything. I stopped and walked for about two minutes after that.  11:23

Mile 7: Pretty quick mile, but started to experience GI upset.  Toddler sized hill up the back end.  10:45

Mile 8:  One of my favorite miles, it runs down Meyer Blvd, the street I grew up on.  I ran by my grade school and the house I lived in.  This mile always has a lot of spectators too, which is always nice.  Middle of the mile was a wonderful aid station double sprinklers that made me feel like a rockstar, and porties-thank god.  A longer wait at this one, but I was over caring about time.  I ambitiously jumped into a free john and made the HORRID mistake of looking into the well. WHY OF WHY DID I DO THIS?!?! Instant vom.  I meagerly exited, washed out my mouth with water and pushed on. 10:19

Mile 9:  Someone gave me some ice during this mile.  It rocked. 9:54

Mile 10:  Finally, mental relief.  For some reason at mile 10, I always go Ha, you only have a 5k left.  That unfortunately is still quite a bit of mileage.  After an aid station where I selfishly grabbed one too many hotorades, I started feeling that hot burpy feeling.  Ya know when you drink too fast while running?  Vomit count: 2.  12:35

Mile 11:  I resigned to walking a lot during this mile.  You know that feeling where you know you've pushed something just about as far as it could go?  Yeah, I was passed that point.  There's a long incline in this hill.  I call it the MANEATER.  It's kinda sad to watch people attempt to run this and at some point everyone of my skill level walks it.  It was the same last year.  Its at this point in the race where you are with the people you will finish with.  Everyone is doing that passing dance, when you push to run and pass someone and then have to walk, so the person you passed can pass you now because they pushed to run.  13:44

Mile 12:  Glory.  Starting this mile was slow,because I was walking.  I got momentum though.  Toward the end of this mile my high school cheer squad was on the course, I freaked out. STA!  CLASS OF 06!  I zoomed by cheering, and got a little misty.  11:55

Mile 13: Heaven.  After seeing the squad, there wasn't stopping me.  I said "FUDGE YOU HOSPITAL HILL" I am finishing strong.  There's this hill that's an ABSOLUTE joke during mile 13, you've read about it.  Unlike last year, I knew it was coming.  I am please to announce I ran the entire thing.  Once you get to the top of that thing the race is finished, it's the best down hill finish a runner could dream of.  Half a mile, entirely down hill.  9:34

Mile 13.1:  At this point, you can see the finish and it's down hill.  I was sprinting and as I was getting closer I saw the light.  My legs were bricks, I was running so heavy.  My form was awful, but I pushed so hard. I always want to cry at a finish line, that's what people do when they are proud.  I can never cry.  Not even tears of joy.  1:05

It felt like 94 degrees at the finish, but there were ice cold towels and some B.A. medals.

At the end of the day, I was about 20 minutes over my goal time-but that's what everyone says to expect from Hospital Hill.  I am very very satisfied with myself.  This was my first half marathon alone in over a year, and my first road race where I didn't have any spectators along the course.  These of course are not excuses, but more reasons for me to be happy.

I really really really love this race.  It's so miserable.  I can't wait until 2012.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Race Recap: Oz Marathon

Check it: Motivated to Blog!

So as you all know, I had intended my next full marathon to the Olathe or OZ Marathon this April. I had ideas of grandeur...but SHOCKER! never had the time to train...or the balls. You decide. I don't really care.

But it's a tradition race so I had to run it. Can something be a tradition if you've only done it once? I think so. Anywhoo, last year a bunch of internerd gal pals planned to run the various distances and do a Weight Watcher Boardie Meet and Greet. Unfortunately, plans fell through and tires bitches and prevented us from all meeting, we missed you MeaMea. This year, 2011, was going to be OUR year. Meagan was on board, and had roped in Becky. We were all set, and I was so stoked. Fate stood in our way again in 2011. You don't need to tell TBB that family comes first, and that's where your e-running buddies needed to be that weekend.

Last year's troops, LtoR: Anna, Megan, Moi, Megan and Colleen, all WW boardies

So ever-so-faithful Megan B. (now H!) and I became to duo ready to conquer the flattest course on earth...again...for the second time...because it's a tradition.

We begin every race weekend with a carbalicious dinner out. Last year, we went to Sweet Tomatoes this year we maxed at the Olive Garden, or the affectionately named "OG." I am proud to announce I had eight bread sticks.

The next morning, Megan made her way to mi casa and we were off. We arrived out at the garmin head quarters-which bee tee dubs is starting to feel like home with all the races I do out there. The second we got out of my car, we were miserable it was thirty something degrees and there was a whipping wind that made it hard to see, let alone walk.


By gun time, Megan and I were already to go home and crawl back into a cozy bed. Not that should be any surprise to anyone...that I wanted to go back to bed. The gun went off and so did we. Straight into the wind. We ran for four miles with a headwind that did not let up. My headphones we so loud to counteract the roar.

Rick Rolling

After four miles, we turned right and it broke the wind for half a mile until we turned left again and we were back into the wind. The front eight miles were all the same, Megan jokes that the front half of this course gets lost. You literally run loops in parking lots and feel like you are going no where and BAM! you're halfway done.

Finally around mile eight is when we entered the residential miles and the houses were blocking the wind. Suddenly my ipod was SO LOUD and I could feel the sweat down my face. Each drop stung because my pores were so widen open and chapped from the wind.

There were so many funny costumes because it was Wizard of Oz themed, but no one cared. Everyone was miserable. I have never been in such a miserable race. Usually there's a rapport between runners, people will chat or shoot the wind. But all anyone wanted to so was literally shoot the wind.

thirteenth inning stretch

Last year, Megan and I came upon the finish and I was a quarter mile away and puked. I insisted she go on and finish. True to tradition, a quarter mile away Megan hit a wall and insisted I go on on. So despite running the entire thing together this year, we are yet to finish together.


We ghosted the second we were finished. We didn't grab food, the basically had to force us to even take water. All we wanted to do was leave. We stayed long enough to snap our finish line photo.

...and as ALWAYS it was time for us to repay our massive caloric debt. Our creditor was First Watch. I was in some weird I NEED TO BE HEALTHY kick and ordered eggs, barf. They weren't good, I wanted pancakes. I don't know what was wrong with me. We ate, but were just so drained. The restaurant was busy, but the wind was so deafening that it seemed quiet. Oh, and we were freezing. All I wanted was to get into a hotttttt shower.

Which ultimately I did, and that's how the story ends.

OH! and I DO NOT know our time, I haven't even bother to look. I don't care.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Topeka to Auburn Race Recap

Last week, my faithful racing partner and I trekked the brutally epic Topeka to Auburn Half Marathon.

You guys can probably guess, I'm not really in any shape to be racing-let alone running a half. Details, right? I woke up yesterday, already stiff. Never a good sign, that you are SORE before the race. Why? It's cold, I have a bad mattress-I'm old. Pick your answer. I stretched a little, drank some coffee and then drove the hour and some change to Topeka, Kansas.

My road trip there, I thought about last year. Last year's race, was my second half marathon and my first time meeting and running with Megan. My ever-so-faithful madre, drove me last year and followed us through the course. We drove the course together, and we only got to mile six and I was nauseated by the course. Last year, I walked through the fairlawn mall severely intimidated by the stature of the runners. Last year, at the finish line Megan and I SWORE we'd never be back.

Urish Hill

This year, I followed the same path. I stopped at the same McDonald's to use the restroom. I parked in the same spot. Megan and I met in essentially the same place. The race has an afternoon start, due the weather and them trying to take advantage of the warmest part of the day. So at 10:58, we lined up for our 11:00 start. This race is seriously small. I think last year there were 200ish people, and this year 280ish. I don't know the best way to describe the race, but for whatever it's worth Megan and I are usually middle of the pack runners, just about average for the course-but at TtoA, we come in close to last.

Imagine the hilliest course of your life, and then you'll have Urish road-the mile 5-8 stretch. Imagine the slickest, most compacted slushy snow, and then you'll have 100% of the course. Image the most unstable, unlevel dirt and gravel road, and then you'll have miles 10-12. Imagine the hardest, most grueling course and the coldest winter winds and you'll have the Topeka to Auburn Half Marathon.

This year, even though we are in way better shape was equally as hard as last year. The first few miles are always the hardest, but I was so stiff and my shoes weren't tied right, my legs were cramping. It's kind of a blur now since, it's been over a week-but I still remember the misery. Miles 1-5, I always ask myself WHY? but miles 6-12, I know.

Something magical was the fact that we crossed the finish line at the EXACT SAME TIME as last year, pretty much down to the second. Crazy right? Our finish line photos were ruined by this douche that asked us to drag him the finish line, and then edged us out in the last second. Rude.
We finished up, ate some FREE pancakes-one of the many perks of this race. Then I drove him. The drive home was brutal, almost as hard as the race.

The end.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

That Grind Don't Stop

Sunday was the big day!! My bebe seester ran her very first half marathon-AND LIVED...AND FINISHED! Can you believe it? I can. I had no doubt in her, she's amazing! Anyone who runs marathons is amazing-but my sister is super amazing wonderful! Are you read for the recap? And AWAAAAYYYY WEEEE GO (because I promised her a super epic-legen-wait for it-DARY post):

mmm salty kisses

Day -1: 'Twas the day before 13.1 and all were asleep-but us. We were up and at 'em bright and early, to get our race stuff together. We had an agenda: t-shirts to make, shorts to buy, lunch to eat, dogs to adopt, soccer games to play and packets to pick up. Somehow we managed to get everything done, except: adopting a dog (another story, another post) and we only half way made our shirts. We ran what felt like several hundred errands Saturday getting ready for the big race. We had ideas of grandeur for our shirts, but we bit off way more than we could chew-and ran out of steam halfway through silkscreening. We only got our names on our shirts, and unfortunately it wasn't up to par to our standards-so we nixed the hilarious saying on the back. At least Em, got her name on her shirt-which I forewarned would be magic on the course. She'd just have to wait to see. We had chipotle for lunch, went to her soccer game and had a family dinner. The night ended with us roasting marshmallows at my mom's.

yeah! she finished!!!

Mile -1: This is perhaps my favorite half marathon, why because it's so close to my home AND ANNDDD it's on MY trail. Say where?! Yeah. So Emmers and I met at mi casa, geared up. We walked a little over a mile to the race start, and got there just on time. I shouldn't set this pattern for her-I am AWFUL about getting to races with enough time to stretch. Less the never, we lined up towards the back. For whatever reason, this race does not have a staggered start for the 5k, Half and Full-and from experience I advised that the rear was going to be best for us so we didn't gun it and run out of gas trying to keep up with 5kers.

family portait

Miles 1-3: Like I said, no staggered start. Even lining up toward the back didn't help at all, it was still wicked thick through the front. Emily and I vowed not wear ipods, so we could chat-and we quickly learned that hanging out all day yesterday tapped our conversation supply. I started making jokes and loudly said "This is like a one mile race right?" "We are almost done right?" to which no one really appreciated. Apparently, runners don't get a sense of a humor until the back miles-when everyone is a little loopy and delirious. The front miles people are still focused and set on PRing. After mile three, we ditched the 5k runners and pushed on. The weather was unseasonably warm, and I had already ditched our matching shirt.

Best Mom Evah

Miles 4-6: The miles were really flying by, Emily stated firmly she will not be walking until mile 6. So we trotted along, and I kept trying to talk it up. She was not having it and really needed to focus-so right around mile 4.5 I turned my iphone speakers on to my running playlist, tucked it back into my pocket-and rocked the muscle butt for the rest of the race. It was quite awesome, I must say. It set an ambiance for the whole race. Other runners would come up and hear Usher or Lil John, stop and pace with us to have a little jam session and move on. We'd jokingly dance and rock out. Since this was an out and back course, at mile five we got to see the leaders speed by us. We screamed out butts off cheering them on. It's always motivating to see the leaders, and that gave us some 'umph' to push on.

Logan had to contain Goliath's excitement...and mine too

Miles 7-9: This is when things started getting pretty tough, but just when Emily was ready to throw up we saw our Mommmm! She's magnificent, ain't she? Always there just when we need her. I tossed her my shirt, and Emily stopped and hugged her. This was on a giant uphill that lied and said was the worst hill of the course. This stint is a square of roads, you turn right and go up turn right again go uphill, turn right and go uphill and finally turn right but go down hill. Logan was at mile 9 with Goliath. There was an aid station right before we met them, and the volunteers were like "dude that dog is REALLY going crazy now!!" hah, it's because he could see us! Logan jogged along with us, I got to run a little with G. We got on that downhill, and got a second wind.

The finish four from L to R: Scott, Eric, Me and Emily

Mile 10-12: We kept seeing this group of guys along the course. Every time we saw them I'd shout "hey we're here! you didn't miss us! don't worry!!" and then they'd go crazy for us. It was hilarious. Emily was about ready to kill me at this point, but if you don't get a little homicidal during a marathon-maybe you aren't pushing yourself very hard. Mile 10 is when the full splits off from the half, and we waved good bye to the really crazy people and started making our way back the finish. We were back on the trail and facing familiarity. Emily almost punched out some super rude running girl, and that was funny. Right before mile 12, a 39 year old man collapsed from cardiac arrest. When we ran by him, he was being resuscitated and honestly-it was really frightening. I won't go into much detail about that, but it totally messed with our heads-especially with all the rumors and talk for the remaining of the race. I could only think about his family waiting for him at the finish line.

Mile 13.1: I made the mistake of telling Emily that after the bridge we'd be at the finish, but there were really two bridges so mentally she was done when there was a little less than half a mile to go. For that she was really ready to kill me, and I allowed her to punch me. It hurt but I think it was worth it. We went under the second bridge, saw the finish line and Emily picked it up. We sprinted the chute and BAM we crossed the finish line AT THE EXACT SAME TIME. How cool is that? Down to the millisecond. This is amazing to me, because this is our chip times-bot the running clock. How cool?

Huge Thanks to the Volunteer of the year, my BFF Megan!!

Mile +1: We walked through the food lines, got our medal and then sat down in the grass. Like I said, it was unseasonably warm-it felt like 60 degrees. Emily's feet were absolutely killing her, likely due to ill-fitting shoes, but I rubbed her feet. We took a million pictures, and then went to breakfast.

Oh and happy Race-a-versary to me! This was the anniversary of my first half marathon!
Gobbler Grind 2009!