Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Half #13... a PR... and a deep breath...

Hello... it is me again... another race is in the books!

This past weekend (October 26th) I participated in the Snohomish River Run Half Marathon in Snohomish, Washington.  It was my 3rd Half in 6 weeks time.  I kind of did that by accident.  I wasn't really trying to set any records or stack up bragging rights or anything.  Just happened really ...and I am proud to say that I DID IT!  I got to help out at the Packet Pick Up for this race and if it works out I would LOVE to do this again!  Got to meet some fun people and it was fun to be "on the other side of the table".

Prepping the night before
This race also had a 10K offered and there were a lot of folks participating.  I looked up the results online and if you add all of the participants together there was close to 1000 people across the fields.  This was the 3rd annual happening of this race but the first time I have done it.

We (my friend Carrie and I) arrived at Snohomish High School for parking about an hour before the race was set to begin.  This Half would be my 13th and Carrie's 4th.  It had taken us about 45 minutes to drive south to the area.  It was still a bit dark out and a little chilly.  The weather wasn't that promising and rain was threatening on the trip down as well as we gathered our things to make our way to the start.  The Half was set to begin at 8:00am with the 10K set to start at 8:15am.  We walked the few blocks to the start area and went straight to the potty stop and bag check.  The lines were short and only took a few moments to drop my bag at the check.

The race was providing pacers (folks that carry a tall stick with a time on top if people are going for a certain time goal) to 2 hours 10 minutes... a little fast for me (choke choke).  I was a little disappointed they didn't have pacers for a little bit slower times as I really wanted to try this "fast and flat course" to reach a personal best of my own.  I have yet to break 2 hours and 30 minutes for a Half and I really wanted to try today.  I guess I would do the best I could on my own.

Carrie and I lined up in the middle of the pack and waited for the "GO" signal.  Soon... we were off - I bid Carrie a goodbye and said "have a good race" and we set out at our own respective paces.  I am not super familiar with the Snohomish area so I will just leave out a detailed description of the course.  Instead I will just post a link to the course map... HERE.  I will say that the course was very flat and basically an out and back.  I had done this course basically backwards at the Snohomish Women's Run Half last May.  So I knew some of what to expect.  Doing an out and back is not my favorite type of course but this direction seemed for some reason more tolerable than in May.  It could have been that the weather was super warm in May and took me a bit off guard. 

Carrie and I snapped a quick selfie at the start!
All in all I enjoyed this race and the weather held for the most part.  I felt a few drops of rain the last 5K or so of the race but that was it.  The wind was another story.  On the way back (on the out and back) there was a pretty good head wind.  I wonder if that had not been how my time would have resulted.  Hmmm... always questions.  Once I finished it didn't take long for me to chill a bit.  I was so thankful I packed an extra coat in my bag and I wrapped the silver blanket around my legs.  The wind was a little bit of killer as I waited for Carrie to finish.

The great news is I did get my Personal Record for a Half Marathon!  I didn't get the time I hoped for (under 2:30) BUT I did shave 3 1/2 minutes off my best time!  I finished with 2 hours, 33 minutes, and 41 seconds!  That might not sound like much but it is a BIG deal to me!

After the finish!

I spent some time waiting for my friend Carrie to finish... and as I waited the weather deteriorated.  By the time Carrie finished the rain was coming... so we hurried to the warmth of the car.  It felt so good to crank that heater and be done!

This race was a lot of fun.  I am totally up for doing it again next year!   For now... I don't have any more races on the calendar for the rest of this calendar year.  I think I will probably be on the look out for some shorter distance races before December 31st.  I have 2 more Half Marathons (The Rain Run and Tinkerbell Half Marathon) already booked for 2015... with more to come. (Actually at Disneyland in May of 2015... I will be doing the 5K, the 10K and the Half Marathon on 3 consecutive days... if you go you might as well RUN ALL THE RACES!)

Do like out and back races?  What is your favorite type of course?  Trail... pavement... hilly?

How close have you scheduled races before?  Back to back days? 

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