Melanie and the race organizers for the entry!
Today I'll recap the festivities using the "Good, Bad, and Ugly" format.
- Gorgeous course that ran along the St. Joseph riverfront and through many local South Bend and Mishawaka parks and neighborhoods. The finish was on the University of Notre Dame campus near the football stadium.
The St. Joseph Riverfront in downtown South Bend
The Notre Dame football stadium
- Weather conditions were very pleasant. It was sunny and breezy with temps in the 60s.
- Mid-sized races are my favorite, and I thought the half marathon field size was perfect - right around 1,250 finishers.
- Great swag - I loved the medal and the race shirt!
- There were frequent aid stations with friendly volunteers, ample medical support, and helpful, spirited police officers. In my experience, it's atypical for the police to cheer on the runners - but here, many were cheering us on with gusto!
- Amanda N and I met up before the race. Here's a picture of the us before the race start:
The "SB" could stand for either South Bend or for Sunburst. Not sure which one was intended???
- Amanda and I ran together for the first 10K or so. It was great to have her company! We enjoyed chatting and bantering with other runners on the course. HUGE congratulations to her for smashing her old PR to smithereens. She earned a new PR by a mind-boggling 30 minutes. BOOM!
- I finished in 2:12:40, which was a 71-second PR for me. (Mini-boom!?!?)
|Amanda and me with our medals at the finish.|
- While my 2:12:40 time was a solid PR, my goal for the day was to break 2:10. Going in, I felt pretty confident that I could do it since I just ran 1:37:43 at the CARA Live Grit 10-Miler in April. I was disappointed that I didn't achieve my "A" goal. I know I could have done better.
- I ran a majorly positive split. Up through about Mile 7, I was right on pace. But then fatigue started hitting, I cramped up for a few minutes, and my legs began feeling heavy. Everything deteriorated from there. During the remainder of the race, I clocked only one mile at target pace.
Trying desperately to battle through
- Around Mile 11.5, the marathoners/half marathoners merged with the 5K walkers. This resulted in significant crowding for much of the rough final stretches of the course. Thankfully, the 5K walkers branched off again near the very end.
- I wasn't expecting the long, rolling hills on the course. Most of them weren't too bad, but right after the Mile 12 marker there was an absolutely killer hill. I thought it was cruel and unusual, especially at that point in the race. Amanda F, who ran the full marathon, said it was new on the course this year. She shared this picture which doesn't even begin to do it justice:
- The course was very winding. Even though I am militant about running the course tangents, my Garmin still ended up registering 13.18 miles at the finish line.
- I wore a time-tested sports bra and socks, and I applied ample BodyGlide. Yet, somehow I still ended up with chafing and blisters. Going into the race, I already had a black toenail and it got exacerbated pretty badly during the race, too. Ahhh, the glamour!
Obligatory race photo body spasm.
As you can probably guess, this photo was taken prior to all the skin/blister issues.
- Adam wasn't able to get to the finish area to spectate. He drove around for about 45 minutes but kept getting redirected due to road closures. After I crossed the finish line, he was still circling the premises. He didn't get to see me run at all, which was disappointing.
- The ribbon on the medals lists a race date of June 5, 2015. The race took place on June 6, 2015. Oops by someone!
Despite not having my best performance, I had a great time at this race. I loved the surprisingly beautiful riverfront scenery, the finish at Notre Dame, and the friendly, genuine volunteers and staff. It was great running with Amanda N and celebrating her spectacular new PR afterwards (wow)! If I lived closer to South Bend, this would be a race I would enjoy doing every year.
My next race: the PAWS Run For Their Lives 8K on June 14, 2015
I'd take a 71 second PR any day! Congrats! (Maxi-boom!) I like the medal but yeah epic fail with the date. Hope your blisters and chafing heal quickly.ReplyDelete
Thanks HoHo! Your "maxi-boom" made me smile. =) Thankfully the medal date was no big deal to me, but a woman posted on Facebook that June 6 was her wedding anniversary so she was really bummed about the mistake. Yikes!Delete
Seriously?! She wanted a race medal because of her wedding anniversary? LOL so hard right now.Delete
Maybe she ran a race the day she got married? When I ran Rock N Roll DC, there was a woman there who was getting married later that afternoon. Her entire bridal party was running the race with her, too! How's that for runner dedication, eh? =)Delete
I'm convinced whoever plans a route with hills at the end is evil, evil, evil! My legs have nothing and I will be stubborn and just walk up it.ReplyDelete
Evil indeed! I am usually able to gather some speed in the final mile, since I know it's so close to the end - but NOT THIS TIME. I walked about halfway up the hill, then tried to get back into a run and gut out the rest. My legs were NOT happy. I think that hill ended up costing me at least an extra minute of time!Delete
Wow! Nice PR!! That's awesome! Ok you were disappointed but now let that go and be happy and proud for your accomplishment! You will get that sub 2:10. Just keep chipping away!ReplyDelete
The Michelob Ultra 13.1 in 2012 had the wrong date on the medal too. It said June 6, 2012 and the run was June 9th. lol.
Thanks Amanda! Appreciate the positive outlook. It mystifies me how sometimes we are able to achieve enormous PRs, whereas other times we can only knock off a few seconds. But yes - any chippage is good chippage. =)Delete
Oh my gosh, I never noticed the date on the 13.1 race back in 2012! That is too funny! Must have been me flipping the 6 and the 9 in my mind's eye, LOL, which is probably what happened when someone created the medal order. Hilarious!
Congrats on your PR! Some of those snafus are funny -- in how avoidable they could have been. (Not your sportsbra/chafing situation though. You did what you could - something was different that you couldn't have predicted). On your bonking/positive splitting, do you think you got enough water in? Enough calories per your nutrition training? One thing I like about heart rate trainign is that I can see what the problem is when my pace goes down -- if the HR goes up then that means you're getting dehydrated, if the HR goes down with the pace (but effort stays the same), then that means I need to eat more.ReplyDelete
Either way- awesome job! And I love the "Sun Fun Run" shirt!!!
Thanks Lauren, and thanks for the reflective questions. I have a few inklings on why things didn't go great. I've been battling a very persistent cold for the last two weeks. Other than running a 10-miler last weekend and 3.5 miles the day before the race, I've done no running at all the last two weeks. During this time, I barely did any other exercise and was not consistent about stretching or PT, either. So I guess I shouldn't be too surprised that it wasn't a great day. But your insight on HR training is very interesting. I should learn more about HR training since I have such little knowledge of it. For us folks who like crunching the numbers, I think it would be very eye-opening to see HR data!Delete
Funny about the date on the medal being wrong! Whoops. Anyway, congrats on the PR! Boom! You'll get your goal soon enough. For me, my fastest half marathons have always involved negative splits. Any half where I start out too fast is nearly impossible for me to recover from. On top of that it sucks when I have six miles left to go and am fading instead of enjoying some acceleration. I probably play it too conservatively most of the time, however so don't listen to me! :) Anyway, I love the pic of the river and the city and that hill looks like a monster! :)ReplyDelete
Thanks Pete, and much appreciate the encouragement! I was really focusing on running an even split, which has worked very well for me in the past. Given that I was able to run the entire CARA Lakefront 10 at a faster pace (and with less effort) than what I was targeting at Sunburst, I really did not think I was starting out too fast. But sometimes you just have those days, right? It really is the worst feeling to be fading at the halfway mark. I am learning that being more conservative is probably a smarter strategy in general than trying to run and gun, literally!Delete
BTW - I am dying to hear more about how things went for you at the Run For The Roses yesterday amidst all the rain! (Please note that I did NOT race yesterday so I absolve myself of all blame for yesterday's race-day precipitation. ;-) )
Woohoo! Congrats on your PR - especially on a hilly course! That's fantastic! Sounds like you overall had a really great race.ReplyDelete
Thanks Bethany! It's funny how sometimes the numbers tell a much different story than how you felt during the race, right? But a PR is always a good thing, regardless of how it happens!Delete
Oh BLAH BLAH BLAH! Mini boom my ass! Even if it wasn't your goal, you PR'd. Celebrate that, dang it!!ReplyDelete
By the way, I can't help but chuckle at that ribbon mistake. Somebody's in trouble for that one. LOL!
You are hilarious, Natalie!!! You always crack me up. THANK YOU!Delete
Yes, you KNOW someone, or several someones, got in big trouble for that slip-up. Whoopsies!
Nice job with the PR even if it was a struggle. And you WILL hit your A goal this year. Maybe you need a pacer? ;-) What's your next half marathon?ReplyDelete
Thanks, Erin - much appreciate your confidence in me! You know that I would always welcome any help with these target races. =) My next half marathon is going to be Rock N Roll Chicago, but that will NOT be a target race. My next target half is probably going to be the Hub City Half Marathon in Crown Point, Indiana on Sept 13 (I won an entry from Erica A). Let me know if you might be up for joining me!!! =)Delete
Congrats on your PR! You will hit your A goal for sure. Impressed with your friends 30 minute PR! Loved the race medal and shirt (despite the date typo - oops for sure). Jennifer @ Run Jenny RunReplyDelete
Thanks Jenny! Isn't that 30-minute PR just stunning? It really goes to show that running is all mental. Kudos to the race organizers for the cool shirt and medal, despite the typo indeed!Delete
Ugh, chafing! That is NEVER fun! Gotta love the fun stuff like chafing and blisters being a runner.ReplyDelete
That race shirt is great, definitely a nice one. Congrats on the new PR!
Thanks Shannon! Chafing is the worst. Especially when you don't realize you've chafed until you get into the shower, and then the water washes all the salt into the chafage. It's just awful!Delete
Congrats Emily! You just keep getting faster and faster. Way to shave more off that PR. Hilarious about the wrong date. Whoops!ReplyDelete
Thanks Marcia! Still trying to chip away on race times. It's a slow process but at least it's headed the right direction. Much respect to all the runners out there who have been chipping away at their times for literally decades!Delete
Congrats on the PR! That is fab! What do you think happened that you bonked the end? Did you go out too fast? I hope you can figure all that out if you decide to go for a PR in the fall! :)ReplyDelete
The course looks really pretty! No bueno on meeting up with the 5K runners though. That is bad planning!
Thank you so much, Kim! I think it was the combination of going out maybe a little on the fast side, and then having some of those hills take their toll on me. Going out too fast continues to be a challenge. That's why my best races have been when I had good pacers (like you!) to help keep me on track. =)Delete
A huge congrats on your PR! That's always worth celebrating! (My current half PR is from 3 years ago - how did that happen - and it doesn't look like I'll be beating it any time soon.) Even though 71 seconds isn't huge, I still think that's pretty darn good!ReplyDelete
Huge bummer about the chafe and black toenail though. My toenails turned two months ago and they are still given me a hard time. Boo!
Thank you so much, Amy! I hear you on how PRs can pass us by so quickly - I am STILL trying to beat my 5K PR from over 10 years ago. =D So yes, a PR is a PR, no matter by how much. Always reason to celebrate!Delete
That sucks about the toenail issues you're experiencing, too. It's frustrating that they take so long to grow themselves out, isn't it!?!?!?