Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Chicago Rock n Roll Half Marathon Recap

Sometimes race success isn't just about the clock at the finish line.

Although my time at the Chicago Rock n Roll Half Marathon wasn't great, I still consider the race a good one because I felt great throughout. This alone makes it a huge success in my book :)

All smiles after the race!

Half marathons have been my problem distance for awhile. Last year, I raced four consecutive bad half marathons that included massive cramping, dehydration, injury and worst of all, a DNF.

Even though I was assigned to Corral 3, I decided to move back a few corrals to start at a slower pace. I think it ended up being a smart strategy. I felt great throughout the first five miles - even breathing, strong legs and good form.

As we turned back on to Michigan Avenue, I felt a bit nervous because this is where my race really started to deteriorate last year. This year, however, I couldn't believe how relaxed I felt! I considered pushing harder but held back in fear of falling apart. It's funny, I'm not afraid to go all out during a 5k but when it comes to half marathons, my confidence just isn't there yet.

I decided to kick in the last mile so it was fun counting down the miles til it was time to go. I focused on increasing turnover during the last mile and was looking forward to seeing the finish line. I ended up launching the last bit of my kick a tad too early and was really struggling in the final bit of the race. Ouch. But it was well worth it :)

Here are my results:

Time: 1:50:04
Pace: 8:24 min/mile
Overall Place: 1,566/13,968 (top 12 percent)
Gender Place: 458/8,391 (top 6 percent)
Age Group Place: 101/1,611 (top 7 percent)

My confidence is still a bit shaky it comes to racing half marathons, but I'm feeling better about the distance. I know I can run faster with more consistent training (read: no injuries!) and am actually excited to see what types of times I'll be able to post for this distance in the future. My old 1:46 PR is super old - as in first year of running old - and it's time for it to be crushed!

As for the rest of the trip? It included plenty of eating, shopping and more eating! A few highlights:
 
Enjoying the lovely weather
 
Believe it or not, this was the petite frites cone!
 
Finally got my macaron fix at the French Market!
 
Mom and I can't stop shopping!
 
Lots of deliciousness at Frontera Grill
 
So now a few questions for you:
 
 
1.      Has your running confidence ever been shaken? If so, how did you get it back?
2.      What's your favorite distance to race and why?

I think a giveaway to celebrate is in order! Stay tuned for the details next week!

 
- ST

6 comments:

  1. Amazing job! Your time is outstanding! Keep up the good work!

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    1. Thanks Mindy! It's always nice when a race works out the way you want it to :)

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  2. Nice job! It can be hard to come back after a disappointing race.

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    1. Thanks Kate! I think the max time to dwell on a bad race is 24 hours - after that, it's on to the next!

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  3. Try every other week! I can have serious running confidence problems :)

    I love the half marathon distance - It is the longest I have ever done, but I really love being out on the course and being in motion. Races aren't about getting it over with for me, its about enjoying the journey.

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    1. I'm glad I'm not the only one with confidence issues :) I used to love half marathons so I'm hoping to get back to enjoying the distance.

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