Woke up bright and early and checked the weather channel which claimed that it was currently ~45degrees and would be sunny. Nice! I decided to go with a a running skirt and tank top with a long sleeve shirt over that. Had my hydration belt ready with 3 bottles accelerade, one bottle water. Wore a headsweats hat to keep sweat out of my eyes and the evil sun off my face. Stuffed a gel in each pocket. Had a cup of coffee and half a bagel with peanut butter and was ready to go.
We got to the race venue, parked the car, and walked over to get our timing chips. Shortly after installing chips on our shoes, Cindy and husband were picking up theirs. We chatted for a bit which helped take my mind off the race. We followed a group down the road trying to find the start line, but nobody really seemed to know where the start was. Eventually, the starter guy showed up and gave what seemed to be detailed directions on the course, but he wasn't using a megaphone so nobody really heard him. After a bit we were finally on our way.
The course was quite nice. We wound our way in and around some nice neighborhoods in Los Ranchos de Albuquerque. Nice quiet streets. We ran up past my daughter's middle school. Then over to the bike path for the return trip.
As the sun came up over the mountains, the air temp was lovely. I took off my long sleeve shirt somewhere around mile 6 and tied it around my waist. There was no wind. Really nice running weather. I felt good, wasn't in pain, and had Husband right there by my side. I was taking in the sights and truly enjoyed the moment.
Cindy and husband were on the sideline when we were making the final turn toward the finish. It was so nice of them to hang around. My spirits were really lifted when I saw them standing there cheering! Thank you, Cindy!!
Now for numbers. If you recall, I averaged about a 12min/mi pace for the two half-marathons I ran in the fall. My stretch goal today was to come in slightly under an 11:30min/mi pace and break 02:30:00. Based on my 10K times, the McMillan Running Calculator predicted that I could do a half marathon in 02:27:00, one more data point that suggested that I had set a reasonable, but agressive goal.
Updated with official results: 2:21:36 (10:49min/mi pace)!!
How the heck did I pull that off?!?! I've been thinking about that all day. At the moment, I tend to believe it was the combination of setting a realistic goal and just sticking with consistent training focussed on the half-marathon.Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend.