Friday, March 15, 2013

Snake River Canyon Half Marathon

Race Date: March 2, 2013

I have Plantar Fasciitis so I wasn't sure what to expect for the race.  My goal was to PR (personal record), but I didn't know if my foot would hold up.  I learned how to tape my foot from a couple of videos on YouTube so I taped it the evening before.
Snake River Half Marathon Bib

I rode down with Rob, Danielle, Cheryl and Sherri.  Once we got there it was pretty cool outside (49F) and I couldn't decide what to wear, the wind made it feel like it was 34F.  I was considering a tank top but decided on the long sleeve Elements shirt.  It is light and very comfortable to run in.  I saw a lot of familiar faces from the Spokane racing community so I knew it was going to be a good race.   I did notice there was a headwind which this race is notorious for.  I ran a half mile warm up then took off my sweatshirt and pants and put them by the fence.  I hope they are still there when I get back!

Miles 1, 2  Pace: 6:16, 6:31
I have always taken a gel before a race, but have heard lots of debate if that was the right thing to do.  I decided to not take a gel this time pre-race.  The gun went off and we all took off.  The fast dudes disappeared quickly, I was in the second pack and there were two familiar faces in this pack, Ted and Shawn.   I looked at my watch and knew I couldn't hold this pace for 13.1 miles.  The pack started to break up, Ted stayed in the front pack and three of us dropped back to form a separate pack.  Within my pack Shawn was in front and I was drafting in the tail.

Miles 3  Pace: 6:40
Photo by J. McCabe
I stayed tucked in and adjusted when needed to find the best area to get the least wind resistance behind the runner in front of me.  I carried three gels in my fuel belt, I took my first gel at mile 3 and slowly ate it.  I was feeling really good.

Miles 4, 5, 6 Pace: 6:44, 6:46, 6:45
I was cruising along and noticed a couple of runners catch our train and ran behind me.  There must have been two or three guys.  My body and mind felt good.  I took my next gel a little before mile six so I can wash it down with water at the aid station.  Due to the unpredictable winds, I didn't know if we would also get a head wind on the way back.  I was relieved we didn't have the headwind at the turn-a-round! 

Miles 7 Pace: 6:39
This is where things change a bit.  Since there wasn't a headwind I didn't need to draft anymore. I felt really good and started to pick up my pace.  I ran past the guys I was drafting off of before and a caught a couple of guys in front of them and then it happened!!  My left foot PF flared up which caused me to slow down.  Once I slowed the soreness subsided.  I was taking more short choppy steps with a quicker cadence.

Miles 8, 9, 10  Pace: 6:45, 6:41, 6:45
2nd AG
All the guys including Kercher pass me, I could not respond. Shawn, the guy I drafted off of earlier was still behind me.  I tried to maintain good running form, head up, back straight and chest out.  I was running by myself at this point.  I was getting really hot so I took off my winter hat and shoved into the pocket on my fuel belt.

Miles 11, 12 Pace 6:46, 6:46
Still running by myself and getting tired fast.  Still trying to maintain good running position and hoping my foot won't flare up again.

Miles 13,  Pace 6:34
I see a guy in front of me and want to catch him before the finish line.  I ran with him earlier around mile 8.  If only I can just pass him!!  I pick up my pace, open my lungs and exerted myself!  I pass him finally and then I cross the finish line.

I was super excited to PR!!  Once I stopped, my foot got sore again.   Shortly after finishing, I put my legs in the ice cold river which helped my feet and legs feel better.  Ahhh

Finish Time 1:26:53
Avg Pace: 6:38
Avg Heart Rate: 174
Max Heart Rate: 184