Sunday, July 31, 2011

San Francisco First Half Marathon - July 31, 2011

21:43 km in 2:26:39

I had only done 2 short runs while recovering from injury in the 3 weeks leading up to the race, so my plan was to go out easy for the first 10km and then possibly walk/run the last half if needed. My goal was the finish in 2:30-2:45 if possible, definitely under the cut off of 3 hours.

Erik and I were up at 4:45, got dressed and walked 6 blocks to the race start. We left our extra clothing at the check point, got to our wave (6), and I got in line for the bathroom. After waiting 15 minutes, it was clear I wasn't going to get in before the race started, so I left the line and headed to the starting line with the hope that I could use the porto-potties at the 4km mark. In retrospect, I should have just waited and started in a later wave since it's a chip timed race, that way the bathroom break time wouldn't be a part of my race time. Ah well - live and learn.

We started out slow for the 1st 4km, at about a 6:45 min km (11 min mile), and then I stopped at the bathrooms and lost 4-5 minutes waiting in line there. Erik and I both shed our extra shirts and I tucked mine into the back pocket of my tank top and we were back on our way, headed for the Holden Gate Bridge.

The sun was up by now and I was warmed up, and although it was cloudy/foggy, we could still see the top of the bridge. We kept a steady pace along the flats, then slowed down a little climbing up to and across the bridge. We took quite a few pictures along the way.

When we got to the other side of the bridge, at about the half way point of the race, I decided I was feeling pretty good so we decided to pick up the pace for the last half. We ran about a 6-7 min km (10-11 min mile), depending on the terrain - there are a number of hills in the second half so that slowed me a little. I was running at LT for most of the second half and it was hard work but I felt good. Erik was happy that we were running faster too, but he was great and stayed with me the whole time regardless of my pace.

The race was over all too quickly it seemed, maybe because it was the first time I wasn't running alone, and we crossed the finish line, hand in hand, in 2:26:39. If I hadn't stopped for the bathroom, I would have beaten my Victoria Half marathon time of 2:23, but I wasn't close to my PR in March of 2:12.

No worries - I beat my goal time and was super happy to be able to run strong for the whole race, with no serious walking required. And we had a negative split - 1:16 for the first half and 1:10 for the second half. Not bad considering the 2nd half is a lot harder terrain.

I was REALLY sore for the two days following because I was so out of shape for a long run but I am hopeful that I will be able to do an easy run tomorrow (Thursday) and get back on track for marathon training ASAP.

You can check out my pics on my facebook page

1 comment:

Glenn Jones said...

Running over the Golden Gate was certainly one of the highlights of my running career! Glad to hear you had a good time.

Now you need to come to Southern California where it's sunny and warm....