Friday, December 20, 2013

Mt. Dora Half Marathon: Race Recap

It was hilly. It was hot. It was tough. The end.

Not really. But kind of. 

 I ran the Mount Dora Half Marathon on 12/15. I tried to be positive and upbeat. "Yeah, hills make me better. I'm making myself a faster runner!" Pause not. The hills were tough. The race was tough. I was hoping for a PR, but it didn't happen. 

I was excited for this race. I think I was excited just because I hadn't run a race in two weeks and I am becoming an addict who needs her fix of a race at least twice a month. Which means my wallet is crying.

I was also excited because I dressed up (as much as you will ever see me dressed up) in my Pro Compression Holiday Socks. I was pretty cute.

I tried to run a new pair of shoes for this race (I have a bad habit of testing new shoes during races). They are the Saucony Mirage 2 and I really like them. Light, but supportive enough for a half marathon. We shall see how they hold up for my 18-20 miler tomorrow. 

That Sunday morning started off with a torrential downpour on the way to Mt. Dora. Lovely. So bad that the traffic lights on the toll road went out. Craig was not happy with me for waking him up at 5 am for this. Luckily, the weather cleared up and it was not raining when we got to the race start.

We picked up our packets and hung out in the car. I ate half of a Mountain Berry Clif Shot Block and made Craig eat the other half. My race nutrition has been a nightmare lately and I am trying new things to see what helps. I loved the Clif Shot - flavor was muy bien.

 I had to use the port a potty TWICE before the race and I almost didn't make the start because I was in line. Better planning next time. Craig and I made our way to the start just as the national anthem was ending. I braced myself for the hills and the pain.

Yeah, right.

Literally, after the first quarter mile there was a hill. I was thinking, "Damn. What a long race this will be." My original goal was to PR.That quickly changed. Hills make everything worse. They make me slow. 

Miles 1-3 were 8;55, 8;49, 9:03. After mile three, I told Craig to go on without me. I was pretty dramatic. 

It went something like this ^

 Being the lovely boyfriend that he is, he smiled and told me he would stick with me for a little longer. He had said he would run the entire thing with me, but I figured he would ditch me. He is fast (1:35 is his half PR) and I knew I could run a sub 2, but I am not about that 1:35 life. So I guess he was just being sweet. Or he didn't want to wait 25 minutes at the finish line for me.

Anyway, we kept on going. There were lots of hills, but the downhills were awesome. As in, we flew down them. Every uphill was about a 9:00/mile pace, but the downhills were were around 8:00-8:15 pace/mile. So it evened out. The course was beautiful. It took us down a road that reminded me of Anne of Green Gables. Beautiful overhanging trees, lots of shade, and tons of old, cute houses. The neighborhoods are adorable in Mt. Dora. Miles 4-8 were definitely my favorite part of the course.

Miles 4-8: 8:55, 8:47, 8:51, 8:53, 8:54. 

I took a 2nd surge Energy gel at mile 7 and was feeling good. I love these gels. They are not thick and can be taken without water. Plus, they are delicious. And I need caffeine during a race, so these are a perfect for for me.

 Mile 9 came, and I started to run faster. Craig and I (yes, he was still with me. Too nice) were not running super fast, but I think runners were getting tired. We passed a lot of people, which gave me more energy. Mile 9 and 10 led us to an out and back, so we started seeing the lead runners, which was cool.

Mile 9-10: 8:47, 8:47

Mile 11: dun dun dun.The mile that I began to unravel. I was getting really nauseous. Which meant that I needed fuel, but I was too queasy to eat. What a catch-22. I slowed down here, but kept running. I told myself NO walk breaks.

Mile 11: 9:01.

Mile 12 sucked. A lot. I was close to throwing up everywhere and had to hold it back. I didn't want to stop and throw up because I was trying to come in at the finish with a decent time. I wanted an overall pace of sub-9 miles. So I trudged on. Craig still stayed with me. I would not have kept running without him. He was great.

Mile 12: 9:22.

Mile 13 started off slow, but when I had about a quarter mile until the end, I picked up the pace and mile 13 was 9:14. Once I knew I only had .10 to go, I turned on the speed. 

The last .16 of this race was a 6:54 pace! No lie. We were booking it. It did help that the finish line was after a downhill. 

We crossed the finish in 1:57:33.

Not a PR, but my second fastest half. And with hills. I'll take it!

I'm not sure what I was thinking in this selfie.

The medal was neat. It spun, which entertained me for about 5 minutes.

The lighthouse in the middle spins.

I spent the next hour in my Crocs visiting Panera to eat some mouth watering food. These Crocs are 8 years old, btw. Great investment.

Overall, this was a great race. Race day packet pick up, good (but challenging) course, good medal, and it was $30. Yes, $30. I can't say no to that price. You shouldn't either if you have a chance to run this race next year! 

1 comment:

  1. It's a good thing that your running is much better than your running fashion! Kudos for finishing :)