Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Fall is arriving and a Half Marathon

So the weather has begun to change here in Michigan. Fall is slowly but surely making it’s appearance. This is my first real fall in over 8 years! The crisp cool weather in the morning and evening, with a slight bit of warmth in the afternoon.  But with this cooler weather I am slowly learning that my blood has also became very thin from my time living down in Alabama. Most of the runners here in Michigan are starting to love the cooler weather, and probably still in their shorts and t-shirts for their runs, me I am starting to break out my cold weather gear. I actually enjoy running in the 60’s, I am one of the odd people! I would much prefer to run comfortably in shorts and tanks then gloves, and 3 layers of tops! I will say I am happy that the cooler weather is starting now, so that I can start to get adjusted to it well before the Detroit Marathon in October. But don’t worry I am very aware I live in Michigan there is always a small chance of warm October day that can occur!  The one sad thing of fall and winter weather is that all the cute Lulu summer running wear must go into the bottom of the drawer. 

Kristen, Chelsea & I prior to race. Can you tell who the cold one is!?
Over the weekend, it was a fun and great running weekend. It was the Capital City River Run half marathon . It is 6 weeks out from Detroit Marathon so I get to race to see how I am feeling going into the marathon. The scheduled actually called for 22 miles on this day, but got the approval from the coach to get at least 20 in for the day! So I started with a 1.75 mile warm up prior to the half marathon. I had hoped that warm up would had actually made me warm, but not so much! I was still a fridged soul at the begining of the race.  The plan for the race was to plan for a 2 hour half marathon. It was also my 1st race running with my new running buddy's!!  Chelsea and Kristen were hoping to break the 2 hour mark for the 1st time! So we got into the 9min pace group. And we set off at 8:30am. It was great weather for racing, after the 2nd mile I was warm enough and very happy that I went with tank and shorts. Over the first few miles I was happy to be in the pace group, it did not allow me to go all out as I sometimes do at the start of any run, the rush of starting! So we kept great strides and conversations through out. At mile 4 Kristen had to make a porta-potty break, but told us to keep on. So Chelsea and I kept on. We both kept with in the pace group, conversation pace, and both had said to each other "this feels great". So at mile 7 we decided that if we still feel like this towards the end we would pick it up a bit. At first I thought ok, pick it up at mile 11 or 12. But by mile 10 as I looked at my Garmin we already started to pick it up to an 8:45 pace, so we just kept with it. And the last 2 miles went in between 8:30-8:45 pace. She had an awesome sprint to the finish!! 
Into the finish
We finished at 1:56 and some change. She had busted the 2hour mark, and had almost 8 min PR (or more!) as for Kristen....She didn't catch up with us, but once we crossed the finish line, we had a chug of chocolate milk and water, we went back up the course to run the finish in with Kristen! She may not had broken the 2hour mark, but she did have a 10min PR and came in at 2:06! I was very happy and proud of them!! 

As for me, I was very happy and pleased with how I ran. This was my 2nd fastest half marathon since I started running! And it felt easy! And that's how I had hoped that running at 9min pace would. I feel 6 weeks out from Detroit I am right where I need to be! I feel that all the training and guideness that I have been doing and given from Coach Alex is paying off! I am really excited to get to the Detroit and get into the 4hour marathon pace group! 
After the race, there were still miles to get in! Chelsea who is also training for Detroit had more miles to run as well. So we started off to get our extra 6 miles in! And let me tell you those were some slow slow miles! But we got them done!

With 5 weeks until the Detroit Marathon I am feeling great and ready for it! In 2 weeks I am going to go run in the Brooksie Half Marathon +8 miles! Marathon training doesn't stop just for a half marathon. But with that one, I will be at training pace no race style pace that day! Plus it will be a hilly route which will be good seeing that I have been in the flat lands here in East Lansing. And I get to meet some new running, twitter Friends,! But, I did get to finally meet Jen @redheadrunning even if it was for a short meeting...those silly marathon additional miles got in the way of talking longer! But I think for my next race I need to run with her a few times....she's got speed!!

How was your running weekend?

What is your favorite season to run in?

........until next time always Run Happy :)

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