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New Balance Fall Classic Half Marathon - Run

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Vancouver, British Columbia
Toit Events
0C / 32F
Total Time = 1h 55m 41s
Overall Rank = /
Age Group =
Age Group Rank = 0/
Pre-race routine:

Up at 6am. Had a banana; S and V came to my place and we drove from here. Took pre workout energizer when we arrived at site. Got parked and went in to pick up race package.
Event warmup:

It was cold. Brrrrrr. We warmed up for about 20 min, including some strides, but even then, my toes were cold.
  • 1h 55m 41s
  • 21.1 kms
  • 05m 29s  min/km

S was pacing me. He can run much faster, but goal was a sub two hour for me. I asked him the plan, and in true S form, he said "we are going to run the first half fast, and the second half faster". Great.

First km, however, was way too fast at 4:52. I slowed us down in a hurry, cause I knew there was no way I could hold that. The next two km were still fast, with the fourth correct. I was a bit all over the place though, but I think it had more to do with the up and down course more than anything. In any case, our km to this point were all below what I needed for sub 2, so I was happy.

This course is on the same road as the bike course for a tri I have done for the past couple years, and I know that it is a long gentle uphill. My left leg was not totally happy for this--my left calf felt tight for the down hills, and my hamstring felt crampy for the uphill. It settled down for the second half, so that was good. I won't say I was feeling good at the halfway mark, but I wasn't dying either. I was comfortable with the split (~55min), and knew I had some time to spare if needed.

Second lap was much like the first. km splits were kind of all over the place, but all well under the 5:40 I needed them to be. S says to me at 15km that we need to pick it up for the last 5km, just a little pre-warning. I said we were fine at this pace. He said we weren't going to be happy with 1:55. Well, maybe YOU wouldn't be, but I am! But alright, I'll see what I can do. I was starting to hurt at this point, but I kept telling myself that it was easy. It's all in your head, right?

So, with 5km to go, he starts pushing it. He does this thing where he comes close and gives me a little nudge with his elbow. Pisses me off every time. He knows it. When I am uncomfortable, I don't want to be touched. I was giving it all I could and I told him so. We were on the all uphill section--not huge, but definitely uphill. He had reminded me to breathe correctly a few km back, but when I start struggling, I forget. I tried to keep reminding myself, but it wasn't enough. With less than 500m to go, I got the worst diaphragm cramp ever. OMG it hurt. I could not get a breathe in. I tried to breathe through it--nope. I stopped. And got yelled at--"you have to move to get rid of it". So I tried again. Nope. Bent over, trying to get a full breath in with the worst pain in my ribs and he yells again "we are almost at the end you can't quit now". So I yelled back "I'm not quitting eff off!". I guess that got me enough breath to get going again. Every breath was super shallow and painful, but I finished it. 10 min PR and sub 2 finally. And then I got told I was whining like a girl, while getting a hug. Jerk :).
What would you do differently?:

Remember to breathe properly.
Post race
Warm down:

Just tried to get rid of my stitch. Walked around a bit to keep from stiffening up.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Just going to keep training.

Event comments:

The one downfall of this course: the 10km starts 1 hour after the half and it is two loops. Just as we were about to start on our second loop, the 10km gun goes, so we had to dodge all the 10k racers for about 2km. Slowed us down a bit. Oh, and package pickup was a gong show. I don't know if they didn't have the bags in number order or what, but it took them forever to find bags....

Last updated: 2014-11-01 12:00 AM
01:55:41 | 21.1 kms | 05m 29s  min/km
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 0/
Course: Two laps. First half is downhill-ish, second half is uphill ish. The guy who wrote the course description described it as 'relatively flat'. Relative to what is what I want to know. If I ever find the guy, he's gonna get an opinion from me....
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 5
Good race? Yes
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? Yes
Post race activities: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

2014-11-16 4:03 PM

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Subject: New Balance Fall Classic Half Marathon

2014-11-16 5:21 PM
in reply to: #5067920

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Englewood, Florida
Subject: RE: New Balance Fall Classic Half Marathon

Awesome job!!!! You rock, really cool that you kicked a PR while fighting off the cramping. Congratulations!

2014-11-16 8:25 PM
in reply to: cdban66

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West Chester, Ohio
Subject: RE: New Balance Fall Classic Half Marathon

Huge PR for a HM!! Awesome!!  Sub 2 is fantastic!

2014-11-16 10:25 PM
in reply to: QueenZipp

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Denver, CO
Subject: RE: New Balance Fall Classic Half Marathon

Way to go, Kirsten!!  I think I would have hauled off and smacked S, but you do have to admit, he helped you get across the finish line sub-2.  Of course, it was really you who did the hard work.  I'm so proud of you!!

2014-11-17 12:20 PM
in reply to: laffinrock

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Subject: RE: New Balance Fall Classic Half Marathon

Hahaha, "I'm not quitting eff off!"

Love it. I want that on a t shirt.


Great job, look at how far you have come! I don't think this is the end of PRs at this distance. Sheesh, with a slower start and consistent splits I think you could have even gone faster day of. 1:45 here you come! 


2014-11-17 12:55 PM
in reply to: Asalzwed

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Subject: RE: New Balance Fall Classic Half Marathon

Wow, great race, Kirsten!!  Awesome job on the PR, sub 2 is super!  Diaphragm cramps don't sound like fun...

2014-11-17 1:05 PM
in reply to: #5067920

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Rio Rancho, NM
Subject: RE: New Balance Fall Classic Half Marathon

Awesome job! Congrats on the PR. Maybe I'll try yelling at someone next time I can't breathe

So awesome to see your times continue to improve!

2014-11-18 1:09 PM
in reply to: 0

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Subject: RE: New Balance Fall Classic Half Marathon

10min PR???? Wooooooot!

Sorry about the cramp, but may have been worth it for the "eff off" quote.

Edited by 4agoodlife 2014-11-18 1:10 PM
2014-11-19 11:05 AM
in reply to: 4agoodlife

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Subject: RE: New Balance Fall Classic Half Marathon
lol GREAT report and I agreee w/ Adrienne! I want that shirt too!
2014-11-19 2:56 PM
in reply to: KWDreamun

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Subject: RE: New Balance Fall Classic Half Marathon

  Thanks everyone.  Maybe I'll just have that shirt made up and make some money!

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