Monday, October 20, 2014

Columbus Half Marathon 2014


Well, that was a real shit show.


I'm starting to think the Columbus Half Marathon hates my guts (pun intended).  Last year we had problems sitting in traffic and this year was a whole other mess.

We left the house with about an hour and a half before the race start and made it downtown in plenty of time.  With forty minutes left until the start of the race I got into a port-a-john line.  The line was long but having done this and other major races, I knew these lines moved fast.  Except it didn't.  I noticed that our line was merging with another line.  Crap.  Literally.  So, with 15 minutes left until race start I jumped out of line, gave Dave all of my warm clothes, and got into another line.  Hey, I was wearing a chip.  I'd be okay.  I HAD to go.  And with three people in front of me in line, the gun went off for my wave.  I was in corral A, hoping to run a fast half marathon, and I had missed the start.  I got my business done and took a "warm up" run to the corrals.  Luckily, they had a gap open for the front waves, and I was escorted into the correct corral. 

Except now I was in the back of where I wanted to be and no one was running my pace.  Sure, I like to start slow and work into my pace, but this was ridiculous.  Columbus Marathon and Half have gotten huge and there was nowhere for me to get around anybody.  Short of me pushing people (and I did some), I wasn't moving up. 

Mile 1 - 8:26
Mile 2 - 8:07
Mile 3 - 7:57

Now I was starting to get things going and I was feeling great.  I was passing people all over the place.  The average pace was dropping and I had a good feeling about this race.

Mile 4 - 8:01
Mile 5 - 7:46
Mile 6 - 7:38

Then something happened.  My stomach wasn't bothering me.  I mean, I wasn't crampy, I wasn't feeling sick, my stomach wasn't doing flip flops, but I needed to find a port-a-john and quickly.  The buns were locked and loaded.  Luckily I found one and was able to do my business quickly.

Mile 7 - 8:38

And then I was back and moving again.

Mile 8 - 7:53

It was short lived, though.  My fire buns were not cooperating and I was running squeezing it in.  I had to stop again.

Mile 9 - 8:38

I pride myself on being the fastest pooper in the midwest (self professed) and it was at least doing me good in this race.

Mile 10 - 7:38

One pit stop during a race is okay if necessary, two is ridiculous and yet, I needed a third one.  Good grief.  Unfortunately, as I swung by my third port-a-john of this race, some dude jumped in right in front of me.  He took a long time too (or what seemed like a long time).  I literally yelled from outside the bathroom "HURRY UP!"

Mile 11 - 9:20

At this point I didn't care what was going on back there.  There were only two miles left and I was going to book it to the end with no more stops.  I ran some of my fastest miles of the race in those last two miles.

Mile 12 - 7:43
Mile 13 - 7:24
Last 0.1 - 7:17 pace

Overall time: 1:46:49

Then to finish this whole mess off, there were no medals at the finish line.  I was disappointed until I read the reason behind it.  I have now requested my medal be sent to me.

If you look at my time, for most runners, this is a great time.  And honestly, it's a little humorous that I ran that time with all that happened.  But I am a little disappointed.  Between the bathroom stops and starting in the back, I probably wasted 4-5 minutes during this race.  I have been running for years.  I love the half marathon.  I'm so tired of running in the 1:40s.  I'm better than that.  This race was supposed to be a great race. 

So, what the heck was going on with my stomach?  Well, it could have been the chili I had for dinner the night before.  Sure, not an ideal pre-race meal, but we were hanging out with friends at their house and they already had it in the Crock Pot when we got there.  I couldn't say no.  It could have been the fact that I had been sick all week.  I had been fighting a pretty bad cold (Ebola?) since Tuesday and my body was full of snot and cold medicine.  Lastly, maybe it was stress.  My paternal grandmother passed away last Wednesday and we were leaving immediately after the race for a 5 hour trip down to Kentucky for her showing later that evening and funeral Monday morning.  It could have been any of these reasons.  It could have been all of these.  It could have been none.  All I know is I had a "crappy" race and I'm hoping in three weeks to have a much better marathon.

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