Posts Tagged With: 2013

Rock n Roll Dallas Half 2013

This was a surprising race performance for me and just about everyone I know who ran it.  I wasn’t expecting much as I’d been sick for about three weeks straight and couldn’t run for more than a couple miles without getting exhausted.  Add to that that on race morning the temps were in the 30’s (USA) with steady 20+ mile per hour winds with gusts up to 40 mph (USA) that pushed the wind chill factor into the 20’s (USA).  And I knew the first 8 miles were pretty much on a steady incline (running into the wind).  So like I said, I wasn’t expecting much of a good performance.

At the expo.  I got several compliments on "my style", so I'm never going to change outfits again.

At the expo. I got several compliments on “my style”, so I’m never going to change outfits again.

I was so not expecting a good performance that I didn’t even bother to warm up before the race.  Instead I found some friends in a hotel lobby and just kept warm and lounged.  But here’s the funny thing…once the race started, I ran along at a pretty decent clip for me.  In fact, I was trying to take it out slow, but instead found myself running 8 min miles flat for the first few.

One bundled up man in black (and yellow and green)

One bundled up man in black (and yellow and green)

I knew that I hadn’t been able to train properly and that I probably wouldn’t have the endurance to keep it up, but as the race went on, I kept on keeping on.  I was ahead of the 1:45 pace group for a good portion of the race.  That would’ve been a PR by almost three minutes.  But then it happened around mile 10-11, I hit the wall from lack of conditioning and had to take a walk break.  The break took around two minutes, and I knew it would cost me a PR, but I was fine with it, like I said, I wasn’t expecting much.

Notice the blond Dallas Cowboy cheerleader checking me out. She must've also liked "my style"

Notice the blond Dallas Cowboy cheerleader checking me out. She must’ve also liked “my style”

I average a 1:50 half marathon.  Sometimes a few minutes faster or slower depending on the day.  With everything considered going into this race, I was just  hoping not to have a PW (personal worst, not sure if it’s a real term, just thought of it).  But I finished in my 3rd best time at 1:48:03, within 20 seconds of my PB (personal best, not peanut butter).  If I hadn’t taken that walk break, I would’ve crushed my PR by minutes.  That’s gives me hope cause I never really felt especially labored, I just didn’t have the endurance thanks to that illness.

PROOF that I finished.  Thumbs up, yo!

PROOF that I finished. Thumbs up, yo!

Now, I have another Half Marathon in less than a month.  I’m hoping to build on this performance and hope for a new PR in that race.  I’d love to get down to 1:45 as the next milestone, but we’ll take it as it comes.  I’m feeling much better now (health-wise) and hope to get a few good weeks of training in.  We’ll see how it goes!

Before I sign off, let me add some constructive criticism about this race in case any race director happens to see this…not trying to be negative, just want to help make things better.  1.) I find it a real shame that our entry fees for RnRDal no longer benefits any charities whatsoever.  I’ve may be naive, but I’ve never heard of a race that didn’t have a charity attached to it.  I see now that they are purely for-profit organization, and that makes me sad.  2.) I thought the medal was kind of spare.  People commented on how the ribbon seemed like it was a cheap-o picked up at JoAnn Fabric.  And in this age of big fancy medals, the RnRDal was kind of small.  I also don’t quite get how a guitar represents Dallas.  In years past they’ve had other land marks incorporated into the medal…like the giant Ferris wheel at Fair park.  I know there are a few guitarists that call Dallas home, but I’m not sure Lisa Loeb will go down in history next to Jimi Hendrix.  3.) I still think the race should start at 7 instead of 8 am.  And that’s coming from a non morning person.  4.) I still think it’d be much cooler to end inside the Cotton Bowl instead of outside of it.  5.)  And I still think the course could find some other parts of Dallas to run through – like going through Deep Ellum instead of by all the bail bond shops in the first few miles.  It seemed like this year’s course copied some of the exact portions of the Dallas Marathon course.  Not every race has to go up Turtle Creek Blvd. folks! 6.) I know it was cold and that kept spectators away, but the course entertainment seemed really light this year.  Not a lot of bands, cheerleading teams, etc. along the way.  Not sure if they bailed, or less were booked this year, but it felt kind of empty.

I know it looks like Brooks threw up on me, but don't care cause it was cold! I needed more of that tin foil stuff to wrap me up like a baked potato.

I know it looks like Brooks threw up on me, but don’t care cause it was cold! I needed more of that tin foil stuff to wrap me up like a baked potato.

All that said, everyone I know seemed to PR this day, or at least have a good finishing time.  And I was so very proud of the people we helped train – some of which had never run a half before.  They all finished and I think they all PR’d too!  It was also very cool that some members of our group either went back after finishing and helped others in our group finish, or some didn’t run the race at all but instead did the same thing and just helped others finish by running them in.  That was really cool.  Runners helping runners.  Hopefully one day those newbies will be more experienced and able to help newer newbies.  It all goes full circle.

Anyways, congrats to all who finished!  Way to get out there and battle the elements!  Success everyone!

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The Last Place Finisher

So last night we had a really successful social run.  Prolly around 100 peeps.  Plus lots of sponsors, foods, beers….even free massages!  I felt pretty good during the run – cruised along around 7:45 per mile for 3.5 miles.  But more importantly, got to hang out some really cool folks on a cool evening.

We tri hard to fit everyone in our pics.

We tri hard to fit everyone in our pics.

Prolly the last run I’ll do before Sunday’s 5 mile race.  Too Cold to Hold won’t be too cold I hope, but just cold enough to get a good pace going.  After the heat and humidity during the Disney Marathon, I’m really looking forward to running a race in cooler Texas temps.  Never thought I’d say that.

I’ll fill y’all in on the race come Monday.  But for now I just had one other runner thought running through my mind.  After the Disney Marathon I stretched, had a snack, took some pics, changed clothes, rested, chit chatted, and eventually we made our way into Epcot to get some runners’ lunch, or runch.  But on the way in, we noticed there were people still finishing the race.  We knew we had a friend walking it and decided to wait for him.  We didn’t know where he was, but the race was already well past the 7 hour time limit and there were still folks doing their darndest to finish.  That was something to see.

I’ve never watched the very last runners of a race before.  To watch them giving everything they had just to finish was inspiring.  Most were walking.  Many not in the best of conditioning.  Prolly all were in considerable pain.  Some had ice bags strapped to their ailing knees, hips, shoulders, etc.  But they kept on.  Some were merely strolling, but some were trying to run.  So we cheered them on.  It’s easy to cheer for the people who finish first, but more often than naught, the ones in the back are who really need the cheers.  We called them by name if we could read their bibs.  We showed them the medal they are about to get.  We tried to help inspire their finish, but in reality, they inspired us.

We did eventually see our friend, and he was thrilled for our support.  After all, not many people were left to cheer nearly 8 hours after the race began.  We stayed till the last runner passed us.  The Disney crew shortly behind her picking up the barrier cones that lined the race course.  I don’t remember her name, but I’m glad we saw her on the way to finishing.

One of the funniest, but also cruelest signs I saw someone holding along a race course was, “The Kenyans finished half an hour ago.”  True, the first to cross the line of the Disney Marathon finished 5 or so hours before the last participant.  But they both did it.  So did all those others in between.  Good on us all.  Good on everyone who gives it a go.

Peace and running grease.

 

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New Race, Past Race

So I went ahead and regis-turd for the Too Cold to Hold race at White Rock Lake in Dallas.  I would’ve taken a screen shot of the online registration page, but it wasn’t very exciting to look at, and I assume you believe I registerd as I have no reason to lie about this.

They have a 5k, 5 Mile, and 10 Mile.  I decided to go for the 5 Mile.  Why?  Couple o’ reasons.  Firsty is that I’ve never run a 5 mile race and want to give it a go.  Sloppy seconds is that after all the long steady training runs I did leading up to the Disney Marathon, I really just want to run short and fast finally!  (And I know that 5 miles isn’t as short as the 5 kilometers, but to me it seems short after going 26.2, so back off!)  Thirsty thirds is that I’m still letting my body recover and so I figured I’d keep it to single digits mileage for now.

Speaking of which, can I just say that I see too many people not taking enough time to let their body recover after a big race.  There are some folks out there who can run a marathon every day, but most people can’t.  These races take a toll on the average person’s body, and it needs to heal itself.  Even if you don’t have an injury, there are still breakdowns in the body after races and long runs that go all the way to the cellular level.  But I see so many people jump right back into it right away.  Take a freakin break already.  There will still be races after your body is recovered and your legs are springy again!

Now that said, I feel pretty good after my race.  No significant injuries to speak of.  Still have good energy.  But I’m in this for the long haul, so figure it’s better to listen to my body.  It will tell me when it’s time to go long again.  I’ve still been running, lifting, yoga-ing, but also enjoying the relative break.  Of course, I still need to get ready for the Rock N Roll Half Marathon in two months, but I’ll be fine.  (Again, sorry for lack of this race’s registration screen shot, but see my reasons for not doing so in sentence two.)  I’ve partnered with a very exciting new training group, but that’s a story for another soon to come blog post.  But know that through this group, I’ll be more than ready for the Dal RnR 1/2.

Finally, I’m still working on collecting all my thoughts and pics and vids from the Disney Marathon, but I’ll get to it’s recap eventually.  I’ve got other stuff going on in my life, so you yahoos will have to wait.  In the mean time, here’s a recap video Run Disney made about the marathon.  Check it out when you got 4 minutes.  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0bdFXVDZzVQ&list=PL4C524BF1027443FA

It quickly shows a lot of what went down.  Man, Disney does it right!  They don’t do anything small, that’s fo shizzle.  Peace and running grease!

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