Saturday, February 28, 2009

Crystal Coast Half Marathon 2009

After I couldn't run the Last Chance half marathon, I was really upset. I had worked so hard and trained specifically for a half marathon and now I wouldn't know what I was capable of. So I consulted with Coach and talked with Dave and chose the Crystal Coast Half Marathon in Morehead City, NC two weeks after the Last Chance race. This allowed me to train for another week and then taper for a week.

Thursday, Dave and I left Columbus and traveled to Virginia. And on Friday we finished up the trip. I picked up my packet on Friday and ate some lasagna in the hotel room. Yes, our hotel room has a little kitchenette. It's a great hotel. This morning I woke up and was feeling less nervous and anxious than I had been about Last Chance. Although, I was awake several times last night thinking about the bridge I was going to have to cross. If you don't already know, I have a huge, physical, phobia of bridges. It is real and it is debilitating.

As soon as we headed out of the room, it started raining, A LOT. I mean it was pouring. Look at this picture from the registration tent:

And here I am pretending to look happy that I was racing in the rain:

But, you've got to do what you've got to do, so I laced up The Green Dragons and headed out for a short warm-up.

Then it was time to line up for the race. The wheelchair races were first and then we got to start just two minutes after them.

The race plan was to ease into the first three miles and then let it fly. Well it didn't quite happen that way. I started fast and stayed fast.

Mile 1: 7:12
Mile 2: 7:21
Mile 3: 7:20

Between miles 2 and 3 I was feeling BAD. My stomach was all tied in knots and I felt like I couln't breathe. I worried that it was going to be a long day, but I also reminded myself that it takes me a LONG time to feel good in a race and to just be patient.

Mile 4: 7:23
Mile 5: 7:43 (up the bridge)
Mile 6: 7:21
Mile 7: 7:28

Mile 7 was when I started to feel in my groove. Sure I was turning 7:20s before then, but I felt like I was breathing like I was sprinting and just couldn't get in control.

Mile 8: 7:32
Mile 9: 7:38
Mile 10: 7:28
Mile 11: 7:58 (up the bride on the other side)
Mile 12: 7:36
Mile 13: 7:40 (boy was I feeling exhausted)
Last 0.1: 0:49

Unofficial time: 1:38:36. That's a PR by over three minutes!!! THREE MINUTES! I loved wearing the racing shoes and I loved that not once did I go over an 8:00/mile. The rain actually wasn't that heavy for most of the race, and the temperature was just perfect for me--mid 50s.

I finished 8th overall (women) and finished 2nd in my age group (30-34). I received a medal for finishing and a hat and $15 gift card to a local running company for my result. I'm going to hit the store on the way home on Monday.

And now, it's time to celebrate. :)


maria k said...

congrats! what a great race! i hope it dries up so you can enjoy the rest of your weekend there.

Andrea Hill said...

I was curious how you'd like the shoes. So you think they made a difference?

Meredith said...

Yes, I liked the shoes. If they didn't help physically, they definitely helped mentally. I actually do think they helped physically. I felt like I could pick my knees up better and have faster turnover. But, my legs were pretty sore by the end of the run and I don't know if it was the shoes or because I was working so hard.

E.L.F. said...

The fact that you did it IN THE RAIN makes it all the better, Meredith! I am so proud of you. You worked so hard and were not willing to let this one go. Top 10 AND a PR! Please celebrate and have a safe drive home.

Marit Chrislock-Lauterbach said...

Great job - congratulations on the pr and awesome time! Way to push through the rain - :) I remember those soaking rain showers when we lived at Cherry Point (about 20 miles from Morehead city... )

Time to celebrate!!!

Alili said...

Yay! Congrats on a PR with the bridges!!!

Anonymous said...

Good run today! I actually ran with you a lot of the day and am in your finish line picture... Random!

Molly said...

Congratulations!!! GReat job!

lindsay said...

congrats on a great pr and great race! i was wondering how it went with all the rain (it has been raining non-stop all weekend here too). really great race, esp in the rain! enjoy the rest of your trip/weekend!!

Andrea Hill said...

Hey Meredith, I know you're trying to blog every day, so here's some ideas:

- what do you think made the most difference in your big PRs this year, in terms of training? HR, mileage?

- how far was your longest training run for this race? what pace? what was different about this vs other races?

- you already answered this, but maybe more about the shoes. Will you wear them for all races? Ever in training?

Looking forward to reading more - I'm so proud of / happy for you!!

Stef said...

Meredith this is so AWESOME! So happy you stayed true to yourself and did this race.

CONGRATS on top 10 AND a PR -- fabulous!!! Great pics too!

Michelle said...

Great work! congrats!

unathleticrunner said...

You did amazing! Great job!

Flatman said...

Congrats on the PR!!!