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Portland Half Marathon - RunHalf Marathon

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Portland, Oregon
United States
Portland Marathon
Total Time = 2h 07m 56s
Overall Rank = 570/1898
Age Group = F 30-34
Age Group Rank = 51/146
Pre-race routine:

Michael and I stayed with his friends Ryan and Melissa for the weekend. Melissa ran the half marathon too. We woke up at 5am and headed out at 6am to catch the light rail to the start line downtown. I ate a banana and Luna bar before getting to the start line.
Event warmup:

Weather was gorgeous. I wore shorts, a short sleeved top and arm warmers. Michael and Melissa were in Corral A (there was a marathon and half marathon starting together) and I was in Corral D. We went out separate ways and I had about 25 minutes or so to stand in my corral on my own. I saw a marathon pacer, but it was for 4 hours. Too fast for me to hang with. I thought about going to the bathroom but the line was insane. I started the race about 9 minutes after the gun.
  • 2h 07m 56s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 09m 46s  min/mile

Was feeling a bit out of shape leading up to this race. I would have been more than happy coming close to my PR of 2:09:xx. I didn't know if that was possible, but I figured the great weather would help.

So this was a first - I brought some toilet paper to use at the porta potties. I never think to do this and when I finally do, I end up not using the porta potty. While I put on my arm warmers I tucked the paper in the back of my shorts. And I forgot about it. We'll come back to this later...

I wore a regular watch, not a Garmin as I've been doing lately for races. I'm not going to write out splits as many of them are off since I never saw mile 1, I hit the stop button rather than the lap button at mile 2, missed a few other miles markers and felt that some of them were not correct anyway.

There were bands on the course! I had no idea about that, didn't really read the looong race emails we'd get once a month or so. Loved the drummers especially. There was even a wacky pirate group out near the turnaround. Just never know what you'll see in PDX!

Once I hit mile 3 I knew my watch was 3-4 minutes off where it should have been (since I realized sometime after mile 2 that I had stopped the watch and not hit lap.) This may not have been a terrible thing in the end, since I would hit my watch at each mile and check my split but I didn't worry about overall time.

I shed my arm warmers around mile 3 I think. What I had forgotten to shed before the race was the freaking toilet paper in my waistband! At some point, a mile or two in I felt something kinda saggy at my butt. I was thinking it was the two gels in the zipper pocket in the upper part of the back of my shorts. But nope, it was the TP that had fallen into the lining of my shorts! OMG it's like I've never raced before. So the issue was, how am I going to get it out without all these people seeing me dig all the way to the bottom of the back of my shorts. Amazing. So I ran for a bit and thought about what to do. Finally at a water stop I just went for it and pulled out the wad of TP. Oy.

So anyway, I didn't feel so hot from at least mile 1-4. My back felt sort of tight and I was tired. Michael has been sick so on top of the time zone change that killed us, we didn't sleep well Friday or Saturday night. Sort of felt like I should pee, but I really didn't want to waste precious seconds! But by mile 5 I started to feel better. Once we were done with the gradual hill in the first 3 miles and then came down the hill, I was feeling ok. I was even thinking a PR might be possible.

I took a GU at mile 6 and somewhere after mile 10. There was something other than Gatorade on the course and I didn't like it. So I stuck to water.

I felt pretty darn good for awhile but the last two miles are always a challenge for me. I wasn't trying to figure out my overall time, but based on my splits I felt like I might PR. Or at the least, come in around my current PR. I didn't want to do the math or get too caught up in that, since I figured I might get too worked up and then crap out. The last two miles were weird since it was much quieter as the marathoners split from the half marathoners. I was so happy to not be running a marathon!

From mile 12 to 13 my split was something like an 11 minute mile and I don't think I slowed down that much, so I'm not sure if the marker was wrong. But man I just wanted to be done. Kicked it into the end and was feeling like I might have a new PR! Still didn't know how many minutes my watch was off from my actual overall time so I figured I'd just see what the official results said.

Just a bit later, while having breakfast, I saw that I PR'd by 1 minute 39 seconds! Very happy.

Overall: 570 out of 1898
Women: 279 out of 1312
F 30-34: 51 out of 146
Age/Grade: 51.48% Place: 718
Finish: 2:07:56 Pace: 9:46
Tag Time: 2:07:56
Gun Time: 2:16:58
What would you do differently?:

More speedwork, eat better leading up to the race. Push harder?

The race site has some cool info, so I know that I hit the 5k mark at a 9:07 pace. Too fast. But I never saw the first mile marker so that threw me off. Michael and Melissa had the same problem. I apparently did mile 3-6 at a 10:12 pace. Didn't realize I had slowed down that much. And then mile 6-13 was at a 9:51 pace. So I managed to pick it back up.
Post race
Warm down:

There was alot of food and things to pick up like a rose, medal and finisher shirt. Saw Melissa at the finish and we took some photos together and walked together to find Michael.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Confidence probably.

Event comments:

This was a great race. Wonderful volunteers, lots of water stations and bathrooms on the course.

Last updated: 2012-01-05 12:00 AM
02:07:56 | 13.1 miles | 09m 46s  min/mile
Age Group: 51/146
Overall: 570/1898
Performance: Good
Course: Gradual hill in the first 3 miles, flat the rest of the way.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 4
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Good
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

2012-10-09 8:09 PM

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Subject: Portland Half Marathon

2012-10-10 3:09 PM
in reply to: #4447326

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Extreme Veteran
Subject: RE: Portland Half Marathon
Congratulations on the PR! The TP bit was funny Smile I think we have all left a bit of dignity on a race course at one time...
2012-10-10 7:32 PM
in reply to: #4447326

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Subject: RE: Portland Half Marathon
Wow, big PR!!!!  I have said it before, but you have come so far as a runner.  Super job and hilarious read about the TP!!!!
2012-10-11 7:50 AM
in reply to: #4447326

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Extreme Veteran
Columbia, South Carolina
Subject: RE: Portland Half Marathon
::dancing pink elephants:: Sounds like the watch goof and the mileage markers that may or may not have been accurate helped keep your mind on running, not time, which clearly helped! Great job & congrats again the PR.
2012-10-11 9:02 AM
in reply to: #4447326

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Silver member
Subject: RE: Portland Half Marathon

Hahahahaha that TP was too much! That's hilarious!

Congratulations on a job well done!

2012-10-11 12:07 PM
in reply to: #4447326

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Subject: RE: Portland Half Marathon

OMG the toilet paper! Hahahaha!!!

I also did this race and couldn't believe how lucky we were with the weather! You just don't sign up for a race in the fall in the Pacific Northwest and expect temps over 80. I'll take it!

Great race!!!

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