Finish: I ran a flat 2.01.00!!!!
I'm very happy with that result. That is my 2nd fastest half-marathon, after my debut 1.58 or so in 2004. I ran a 2.01.20 in Parkersburg in August 2004, and never got back to that speed after that.
I spent the night before the race at my parent's house, who live in the next town over. I woke up way early, and turned on the coffee pot before I started to dress.
--Insert obligatory race drama here--
What's with me and at least one race drama? I sure would like to have a race go off without a hitch sometime.
I start to dress, grab my skirt, shirt, socks, where's my running bra? Where's the bra? No way, I did NOT pack the running bra!
I had thrown a blue singlet in with a red singlet, not sure which I was going to wear. I thought I had also thrown in the blue running bra also. I never double-checked the gear. (Rookie mistake!!)
Okay, breathe. Walmart is on the road to Medina, hopefully it is open 24 hours. (Most are these days, but I really needed it to be open!!)
Yes, it is open. In fact, I had just bought an "emergency" bra about two weeks ago, at my home store Walmart, because I had forgotten a bra for a training run, so I knew what style and size would work. I bought it, ran to the restroom, and took care of two functions at the same time!
I arrive in Medina still with plenty of time to spare. I get a parking spot away from the Square where I can make a quick get away to the north after the race. I get a twenty or so warm up jog in. My only concern pre-race is my breathing. The pollen count is high and I keep getting a tickle in the back of my throat. I decide to carry my inhaler with me. "Better to have it and not need it then need it and not have it" applies here.
Race starts promptly at 7 am. It's cool, in the 60's, but sunny. There are a 1000 half marathon runners, which is a "big" race to me. I'm hoping we won't be that crowded after a bit.
I line up behind the 2.00 pace group but the 2.10 pace group is right behind me. We are off, and the pace seems a bit fast. I don't look at my watch until it beeps; 8.48 yes a bit fast.
I end up in front of the 2.00 pace group for the first four miles. The running felt good and the course was slightly downhill so I went for it!
The 2.00 pace group catches up to me and passes me right around the 5 mile mark. This is where we cross the busy state route and run uphill about a half-mile before turning back into residential side streets. The slight hill doesn't bother me, but my pace drops a bit. I finish all the water I have carried in my hand held, now I need to get water from aid stations, as the temperature has risen and the sun is shining brightly!
When I grab the next little bit of water and then Gatorade from the next water stop I know I am a bit dehydrated because this tiny sips of water and drink make me feel much better! I begin to dunk water over my head also, that helps to cool me down.
Around mile five I turn on my music and only put one earbud in, per race instructions. Music is not forbidden but not encouraged. My playlist helps me keep running and I start playing my usual road race game-reel in the runner. I fix my target-melon race tank girl-and imagine a big long rope attached where she pulls me along. I reach her and target the next person.
I actually lose track of mileage. It's hot, my head is down, and I am focusing on leg turnover. I know I have the endurance for the running, but do I have enough speed to catch back up to the 2.00 pace group? I also do not check my watch.
I pass the 12 mile marker. Okay, pick up the pace, Kimba, but don't bust out too fast yet. I hit the railroad track crossing and now it's an uphill to the finish line! I do turn on the jets now, and just run like hell. There is a GREAT crowd of people in the last 1/4 mile and it helps to hear all the cheering.
I can see the clock, and I see it says 2.01! And I cross and finish in 2.01.14 That is "finish line" time,but I don't think it took me two minutes to cross the timing mat!
My stats: 309 of 942 finishers
Female: 117 of 482
Female Masters: 45 of 246
F 45-49 11th of 62
I am pretty happy with those stats, seeing as I am usually an ultra runner with a slower pace. It gives me confidence that I could run a BQ sometime in a road marathon if I wanted to. (I'm not interested in a BQ road marathon training plan anytime soon.)
Next race: Laurel Highlands 50K in two weeks. I guess I need to run some hills now!