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Four Bridges Half Marathon Race Report -- warning -- long post!

michelem2010-05-01 18:00:37 +0000 #1
Friday and Saturday I ate very low residue, hydrated lots, and did some other gastro prep (details not included). Well, it all panned out 'cause I didn't need to take one potty stop during the race today! For me, that is nothing short of a miracle!

Yesterday, I went to the Expo and was quite disappointed. I was expecting a goody bag and lots of free samples like they had at the SF US Half last year, but no dice.

Just an UGLY t-shirt (orange and black for Halloween) and our racing chip. Oh well!

Last night, I had planned to get to bed early, but I was still preparing my stuff and stretching at 11pm. Finally made myself hit the hay . . . Had to get up once in the night to go pee and then the alarm went off at 5am. Got up and took a hot shower to loosen up (I am always very stiff in the mornings) and then ate a piece of toast with macadamia nut butter and plum fruit spread. Normally I don't eat before running, for fear of the gastro stuff, but today I took the chance. Prepped my Nathan with two bottles of water and two bottles of Perpetuem. Yes, I knew they would have hydration stations along the route, but I didn't know how their stuff would sit on my stomach as I've been training with Perpetuem. I am SOOOO GLAD I brought my own! I have to take small sips and it made it so easy not to have to down a whole cup at each of the hydration stations.

Did a 30-minute or so Qi Gong for Stress series before continuing to get ready. It contained a lot of deep breathing and gentle stretches. Very atypical for me as I am a very revved up person! I do think it helpe calm me down a bit though.

Then I got dressed and slathered on the sunscreen. We left the house at about 7:30am and hubby dropped me off about a block from the start. I walked over and shivered until the start. It was about 50 degrees and every muscle in my body was shivering -- I could even feel my butt muscles shivering! My teeth were chattering as well. I was afraid I would fatigue my muscles from the shivering before we even started!

The first wave (1:25 and faster and the relay teams) took off at 8am. My wave (2:15 and faster) took off at about 8:05 or so. It was very slow going getting over the start line. The first mile or so was mostly downhill and then we hit the rollers. My stomach started feeling crampy around mile 3. I was afraid I was going to have to stop at the bathrooms at Nimbus Dam, but the feeling finally passed at that point -- yay! There were trolls at each of the bridge and they said we had to smile to get across! Hah! I think I eeked out a grimace at one or two of them. They had rubber snakes, spiders, eyeballs, and the like on the bridges as well. There were lots of spectators cheering us on along the way and that was fun. At Nimbus Dam there was music blaring and that provided a nice pick-me-up. I'm used to training with my iPod using the Podrunner podcasts of 177-180 bpm's. This helps me keep a steady cadence. Not so easy without (iPods and the like weren't allowed on this race, although I did see a few).

Going over the bridge at Nimbus Dam I thought to myself, "This sure isn't the Golden Gate!" That was such a beautiful bridge to cross (twice) during last year's US Half. What a rush!

I started feeling uncomfortably warm the rest of the way. It was probably only 55-60 degrees at this point, but the sun was shining down and I was sweating in my long-sleeve top and full-length tights. I really felt my pace slow throughout the second half of the race. When I saw the sign for 3 more miles I just couldn't believe I felt so toasted when lately my long runs have been 16-20 miles! However, I had to remind myself that on those long runs I usually have some traffic light stops, as well as potty stops, and today I didn't stop once. Also, I think I was going a faster pace than usual.

The uphills continued to get more difficult and on one I saw a guy off to the side puking. Greeeaaat . . . That coupled with the STENCH from one of the potty areas . .

The last mile was mostly uphill. I was inspired by this little kid, probably 9 years old or so, who was running the entire half with his dad. The kid was only slightly behind me! Wow.

Got over the finish line and saw the time of 2:03 something or other. I don't know if that was the finish time from when the first wave started or when my wave started. Regardless, this was an improvement over my first half last year when I finished at 2:16:11:2. After that race I layed off running for a full 5 months and then only gradually eased back into it before seriously starting training again in late August/early September. And I only just started doing speedwork (for the first time ever) about 4 weeks ago. Oh, and my training program only calls for 3 days/week of running.

Called my hubby and he came and picked me up and we went out for lunch. I wasn't really hungry, but knew I needed to eat, had a roast beef sandwich on wheat with avocado, mustard, tomatoes, and sprouts -- yummy! And a big decaf iced tea.

Oh, and I got a big ugly medal to go with my ugly race t-shirt! The neck ribbon is orange with black goblin-looking things on it. Niiiiice -- not!

Just called in to see if I have jury duty tomorrow and the recording said to call back on Wednesday after 5pm. So, it's back to work tomorrow. And time to continue training for the December 7 CIM! Hope to get in for a massage this week!

Once the results are posted (probably tomorrow or Tuesday), I'll come back and update . . .

Thanks for all your well wishes and support!


Tri Girl2010-05-01 18:10:16 +0000 #2
Congrats on what sounds like a solid race!! Good to hear you're back in the game (after the long lay off). Sounds like you came back, and how! I'd kill to run a 2:03. Even when I was in the best running shape of my life a few years ago, I could only muster a 2:10. Congrats!!!
Syndirelah2010-05-01 18:18:04 +0000 #3
Congrats on your race! Sounds like you did very well!!!

I had a good laugh at the guy puking off to the side of the road... I hope that is never me...

Hope you have a smooth and easy recovery!!!
michelem2010-05-01 19:05:02 +0000 #4
Results are already posted: 1:58:25.8. I came in 36th out of 148 my age group (35-39 yrs.). Not bad. The 9-yr-old came in at 2:03:49.2. WOW!
Veronica2010-05-01 18:23:57 +0000 #5
Very nice!

But why wasn't your hubby at the finish?

Veronica
michelem2010-05-01 20:16:40 +0000 #6
Veronica, Hubby has no patience for waiting around, crowds, etc. Don't worry, I didn't feel disappointed or anything. We got to have a nice lunch together.
lpglives2010-05-01 19:00:56 +0000 #7
Can you tell me where you found the Four Bridges results? I'm dying to see them! Thanks!

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