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Columbia River Marathon - RunHalf Marathon

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Hood River, Oregon
United States
Breakaway Promotions
60F / 16C
Total Time = 2h 08m 49s
Overall Rank = 325/630
Age Group = M45-49
Age Group Rank = 33/50
Pre-race routine:

Nice, pretty drive out of Portland for the ~60 minute drive up the Columbia River Gorge to windsurfing mecca Hood River. Mid fifties when we arrived and warmed up a few degrees by mid-race. Parked near the finish and got in a sort-of long line for the shuttle bus to the start. Everyone seemed to be in good spirits.
Event warmup:

Porta potty break followed by typical stretching. Ate part of a granola bar and had some water. Start was delayed 20 minutes because of the long shuttle lines. No real big deal and everyone seemed to be okay with it. It was a bit chilly in the shady start area.
  • 2h 08m 49s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 09m 50s  min/mile

The first 5 miles felt really good. I thought I was trailing my much-faster wife but it turns out I had about a 1.5 minute lead on her at the turnaround in Mosier. I wanted to run with her, so I waited a bit for her to grab water. We ran together for about a half mile and the road started to go uphill. I began cramping in both quads. I told her to go on as I probably needed to do a little stretching and walking. The cramps never went away and I forced to do a lot of running/walking all the way to the finish. Left leg also started getting charley horses. I've never had cramps like this before, either at riding or running events. Still sore the next day.
Even with the cramping, this was the fastest of the 3 half marathons I've run this year. Can't really complain about that but I really did think early on that I was going to run closer to a 2:04 with no problem.
What would you do differently?:

Training has been a major bummer the last 5 weeks. Lots of revolving illnesses in our house meant a lot cancelled workouts. In fact, almost every running workout has been missed. We wisely switched from the full marathon to the half about a week ago. Strangely enough, my wife Jen has only had THREE runs in the past 5 weeks: The Champoeg Half, the North County Half, and the Columbia Gorge Half. She got faster with each run and set a PR in Hood River, some 3 minutes faster than her Pacific Crest Half in June. Wish I had that determination. I can still smoke her on the bike ;)
Hopefully the illnesses will go away for awhile and I can get back the my swim/bike/run training.
Next race is a half marathon in Portland in mid-December. C'mon 2:04...
Post race
Warm down:

Stretching, water, apple juice, a taco at the finish area then pizza and beer at Double Mountain Brewing in Hood River.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

As usual, lack of training. We've had a nasty bug going around for some 6 weeks now. My wife developed bronchitis. I've just been coughing a lot with 3-4 days of flu like symptoms every other week! My fitness level has plummeted.

Event comments:

Prettiest course I've ever raced on by far. Organization was good, just a slightly delayed race start but they were super apologetic and that goes a long way with me. Wouldn't hesitate to come back next year, hopefully for the full marathon!

Last updated: 2011-10-19 12:00 AM
02:08:49 | 13.1 miles | 09m 50s  min/mile
Age Group: 33/50
Overall: 325/630
Performance: Average
1: 9:25 2: 9:13 3: 10:07 4: 8:06 5: 8:55 6: 10:54 7: 9:43 8: 11:10 9: 9:56 10: 10:59 11: 9:48 12,13: 19:30 last .2: 1:13
Course: GORGEOUS!!! Most of the course was on the traffic-restricted roads of the Historic Columbia River Highway, between Hood River and Mosier. The road surface was perfect and the views overlooking the Columbia River and the hills on either side were, at times, truly breathtaking! Most of the half had you either running uphill or going downhill. Very little flat roads but it made for a wonderfully challenging event. 1136' of uphill (but a nice 3 mile downhill near the finish!!) just busted my legs. The finishing straight was on grass.
Keeping cool Average Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Average
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? No
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

2011-10-24 7:53 PM

Subject: Columbia River Marathon
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