Saturday, December 4, 2010

Race Report: OUC Half Marathon 2010

the outfit - LOVE running in a skirt and knee high socks.
More photos on Flickr
I did it! I completed my 7th half marathon with a great finish time and qualified to join the half fanatics -- this was my 2nd half marathon in 7 days. But most importantly, I had an absolute blast!

Official Stats:
  • chip - 2:31:03
  • pace - 11:31.8
  • clock - 2:32:27
  • overall - 1974 / 2306
  • age group - 165 /202
  • gender - 923 / 1156
The best part about this race is that the start is literally 1 block from my apartment. The race started at 7 am, so I was going to wake up 6:15, get ready and walk over a few minutes before the start. Of course, I naturally awoke at 5:15, so I got up and got ready. This workout well because I could meet my Galloway group for the annual OUC group photo. I then went back to my apartment for a little bit to stay warm and eat a few shot blocks before walking back to the start line.

Race Strategy:
I caved and ran with a watch, because with the great weather we had this morning I had a feeling I would do much better than expected and would want to have the data. However, I started slow, listened to my body, and really enjoyed the race.

I ran with Penny, Julie, and Jen for the first half, having an absolute blast, then sped up for the 2nd half since I was still feeling really good. As you can see from the pace chart below, I was on pace to finish in sub-2:30 until mile 10, but I couldn't speed up enough during the last 5K. After last week's performance, I'm thrilled I did this well and still negative split the race. The last 4-5 miles hurt, but I felt really strong throughout the whole race and dug deep for a strong finish. This is only 3 minutes slower than last week, but a course PR by over 7.5 minutes.

OUC HM Splits

shedding extra weight at mile 10I struggled with what to wear since it was 45ยบ at the start, but I knew I would warm up and could run faster if I was a bit cooler, so tried not to overdo it. I really wanted to run in a skirt, and paired with knee high socks it was plenty warm. I loved this outfit and it was so comfortable to run in it. Who would have thought I'd become a girly runner :)

I also wore my arm warmers, buff, headbands, and windbreaker. I unzipped the arms of the jacket early on, turning it into a vest, and stuffed my accessories in the pockets as I shed them. I swapped my headband for a dry bondi band half way through, which was nice. My pockets were all full and bulky, so I was happy to toss the vest to Jason when I saw him on his bike at mile 10.

After I finished, I stuck around for a bit to cheer others, then walked the 1 block home. I love doing a race this close to home! I was really sore, I so I did 20 minutes of yoga stretches as soon as I got home and that helped a ton. We then went for a leisurely bike ride to lunch at Harmoni, dessert at Delish, and Orange Cycle. After running a ton more errands, we ended the evening with dinner at the Melting Pot. Yum!

Overall Experience:
I'm really glad I did this race--I almost didn't. The weather was perfect, the route is familiar, the medal had a new ribbon, the support at the water stations and from the neighborhood was awesome, and I felt amazing during the whole race. They have music on the course, and many of the water stations were themed. Even the cops directing traffic got into it and cheered us on. I don't remember having this much fun at a race since my first half marathon on the same course.  Now I take a bit of a break, maybe doing some festive 5Ks for fun, then tackle #8 on January 2nd in my quest to run 6 in 6 months.

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