How convenient is it to run a half marathon the week before another half marathon? You’ll know exactly how to pace it!!!! Well, that part I had covered. I had crushed and burned at the Grete’s Great Gallop the week before so I knew
– I had to start a bit slower and save it
– my final avg pace of 8:01 could turn into something a bit faster if I had some grip over the first 5-7 miles.
I had still had the same cold I had the week before, so I wasn’t sure my performance would be any better. On the other hand, the course is a bit flatter… It was easy to plan though. I’d go out easier than last week: 8:15s or around there and at 7 miles, on the turnaround, I’d start pushing it.
Well, I’ve never been one of those people who had issues with the ferry or anything. Yesterday, I did. there was a 7 am ferry, a 7:30 ferry, and an 8:00 ferry. The race would start at 8:30 half a mile from the ferry terminal, so the 8 am ferry was out, it’d leave us in SI at 8:30! So, we got there at 7:23 to board the 7:30 boat. We line up, everyone starts going into the boat, and at 7:35 they close the doors. WTF??? “the boat is moving, are you on the boat??” texted Blaise from the boat. NO!!!!! Crap. They left without us. “It’s not that crowded in the front of the boat”, great! now I am going to make it late to the start, have to wave around like a maniac, UGH, flashbacks to a week ago missing connections when coming back from the honeymoon. The Staten Island turned into JFK and LGA and all my worst possible scenarios. I hate travelling.
Luckily, all the drama in my head, and poor Juan’s ears, dissipated when another boat decked at 7:46 and we quickly left! We made it to Staten Island at 8:15 so we hushed to the corral, undressed and in 5 we were moving. No time to get cold waiting!!!! YEY. #win
Well, the course is pretty flat. there’s about 3 hills but they’re little (smaller than Cat Hill) and one nasty bump at the end I didn’t appreciate. Still, quite an easy course and I liked it. There were enough spectators to distract us, a few bands and DJs and quite some action…
Ugh. At Mile 5.5 (or something) I saw a runner (a man, around 55 years old) lying on the floor, with a police car and he was getting chest compressions. I was so shocked I almost stopped on my tracks. I barely kept running. About 15 or 20 minutes later, after the turnaround, my mile 8 or something, I saw they were putting him on a stretcher so made me feel a little better. I felt so stooopid running when someone’s live was at risk, i really wanted to stop. You always hear about those races fatalities but it was shocking to see it happening. It took me a while to shake it off. What was I supposed to do? but also, how do you get that out of your head??
Well, it was tough to relax. An 8 pace which should have been easy, was not. My breathing was still shallow and I was coughing and had som fun mucus that wouldn’t let me breathe. LET ME BREATH! Anyway, I tried as best as I could to relax and it wasn’t working. Then I tried to just slow down. It was tough to relax knowing last week i was toast at mile 10. What if the same thing happened??? UGH. Eventually by Mile 8 or 9I started relaxing and feeling normal… by Mile 11 I was able to push a bit harder and finished in an ALL OUT sprint, which was quite exhilarating!
If you look up there, I didn’t start as slow as I wanted to… even with the little bump on the first mile. Miles 5 and 10 are way slow, but looking at the course profile I can see why! Look at Mile 5 highlighted int his next image:
And look at mile 10, see:
I guess that’s why I slowed down. I really don’t remember the hills being that bad, other than the one on mile 10, but with my chest filled up with stuff the whole race was a hard-breathing hill… what a great workout though, right?
THE FINISH LINE
So, the finish line was at the Staten Island Yankees Stadium. A new finish so I had no idea what to expect. this is what it looked like, from Juan’s pictures. He was waiting there the whole time.
The last half a mile I passed a lot of people. A LOT. I had some nasty speed sprint fever and I burned it down. Then we turn onto the stradiums entrance, which was EPIC, and oh crap, we’re running on fake grass: ugh. Way to slow my sprint down 😦 Still a great finish line… as epic as Brooklyn I’d say!
I then bent down holding my knees and coughed for 10 minutes straight. SO GLAMOROUS, I know.
THE FINISH IS A PARTY
WOW, that finish escalated quickly!! the sun was nice, w could sit in the grass, I saw many team-mates in a minute and we were all happy just laying around. So much for being tired or layering back up so I couldn’t turn the cold into enterofluebolaenza. Nah, I’ll just hang out here.
Finish time: 1:43:39 (a minute faster than last week’s 1:44:53). Average Pace: 7:55
Previous PR: 1:37:35. From: March, 2013
Age Grading: 65.26%
Overall Place: 1614 of 9518
Gender Place: 271 of 4466
Age Place: 39 of 742
Soon Juan andBlaise and I headed for the ferry, got back on the Island, had brunch and run some 5 miles more. I turned Sunday into a double. the second run was NOT pretty. Actually, you can barely call it a run, but I didn’t stop once and had an avg 9:47 pace so I am counting it. This cold has annoyed me to no end this week.
Well, so… now I have the NYC Marathon in 3 weeks and I am not sure of my goal, as I HAVE NO IDEA what the hell I could have raced if I wasn’t sick… so my NYC marathon prediction guess will be interesting… 😉 let the gambling begin: