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Chicago Half Marathon - RunHalf Marathon


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Chicago, Illinois
United States
Chicago Half Marathon
60F / 16C
Sunny
Total Time = 1h 52m 46s
Overall Rank = 1984/8991
Age Group = F35-39
Age Group Rank = 102/840
Pre-race routine:

Got up around 4:30; slept well, which was nice. Had my bagel and milled around getting things together. Drove the 45 minutes to the race site, got the street parking I was looking for and made my way to the venue. Had enough time to hang out for awhile and people watch. Had a gel about 25 minutes before the race.
Event warmup:

Nada.
Run
  • 1h 52m 46s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 08m 37s  min/mile
Comments:

Oh my. Where to start... this was a classic example of doing all sorts of things you shouldn't do and yet still coming out ahead, remarkably enough. First- didn't have my normal gels. Stupid mistake. And then, brought one less than I needed. Oh, and let's not forget that I all-out raced a 5k yesterday. And, an overly ambitious race-day strategy.

This run was the antithesis of the half mary I did a few weeks ago - that one was easy - I always felt in control and managed it very well. This race... not so much.

Okay - my race strategy - find the 1:50 pace group and hang on for dear life. I really needed a 1:53 pace group -- and I KNEW this -- but thought that I might be able to stay with this group. My plan was to - if nothing else - ride with them for 10k and then figure out what to do from there. Um, yea. Didn't work. Kept up with them for about 2.5 miles and then just couldn't anymore. We had a slow first mile due to crowds, and the pace guy seemed to want to make it all up in miles 2 and 3. Just couldn't do it. So - I settled into my own race pace, and thought that things were going swimmingly (ironic, for those of you who know how well -- or poorly! -- I swim).

Got to about the halfway point - am moving along pretty well at this point -- right at about 56:00 -- and am pretty pleased. Figure I can keep this pace for another couple of miles and then kick it in, maybe catch up with the 1:50 pace group. Again... um, yea. Not gonna happen.

Then... BOOM. at about 7.5 miles, I seriously could have just laid down at the side of the road and napped. It totally felt like mile 18 of the marathon I ran. The gels that I had, while they didn't mess up my stomach, just did absolutely nothing for me. I kept looking forward to the 3 Gatorade stops, knowing that was the only thing that would pull me through.

In all honesty, I ran miles 7.5 through about 10 with my eyes mostly shut -- I must have looked like I was either in major pain or ready to pass out. I have no idea how I kept up a decent pace. Kind of disassociated myself from my body and made my feet move, though they didn't want to.

At mile 10, I just kept thinking... only a 5k left. And I know I'm still on pace to break my previous half mary best, as long as I can just keep going forward. Mile 10 took forever. Mile 11 just a little longer. Mile 12 FINALLY showed up and then I could taste the end. And started pushing a little.

In the end, this time beat my previous best by about 2:15. Not quite the 1:50 I had envisioned, but I'm pretty pleased.
What would you do differently?:

Okay, this is easy. Use gels that actually HELP. Actually TAPER. Have a realistic game plan going in.

This race HURT. Took more mental fortitude than I'm used to giving out, but I'm pleased that I was able to when I needed it most.
Post race
Warm down:

Got my medal, water and gatorade. Then picked up my backpack and got some food. Didn't hang around much after that - didn't come out with anyone and mostly just felt like going home by that time.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Stupidity. :)

Event comments:

I enjoy this race. The crowds are pretty good except when you're out on Lake Shore Drive. The post-race food leaves a little to be desired, but I suppose with the number of people they have racing, it's hard to feed everyone. It's well organized, and the route is pretty cool.




Last updated: 2006-06-25 12:00 AM
Running
01:52:46 | 13.1 miles | 08m 37s  min/mile
Age Group: 102/840
Overall: 1984/8991
Performance: Average
8:34 - 8:39 - 8:15 - 8:34 - 8:30 - 8:24 - 8:38 - 8:51 - 8:28 - 8:43 - 8:56 - 8:58 - 9:11
Course: Around Museum of Science and Industry, through Hyde Park then out and back along Lake Shore Drive. Nice, flat, fairly scenic course.
Keeping cool Good Drinking Not enough
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Below average
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
Physical exertion [1-5] 4
Good race? Yes
Evaluation
Course challenge Just right
Organized? Yes
Events on-time? Yes
Lots of volunteers? Yes
Plenty of drinks? No
Post race activities:
Race evaluation [1-5] 4

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2006-10-01 3:57 PM

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Master
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Southwest Chicago 'burbs
Subject: Chicago Half Marathon


2006-10-01 7:45 PM
in reply to: #556951

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Elite
2468
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Racine, WI
Subject: RE: Chicago Half Marathon
WOW Laura, that's still one smokin' race.  Someday I wanna run as fast as you   What sort of gels were they...I won't buy any
2006-10-01 9:25 PM
in reply to: #556951

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Champion
5183
5000100252525
Wisconsin
Subject: RE: Chicago Half Marathon
holy crap!  That's some serious speed!  way to go!
2006-10-02 8:16 AM
in reply to: #556951

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Master
1395
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Granvile, Ohio
Subject: RE: Chicago Half Marathon

Nice Job!  Let me get this straight.... You did everything you shouldn't have and you still beat your previous best by 2:15 - hmmmm, maybe this taper stuff is overrated   Congrats on a great race!

 

2006-10-02 8:56 AM
in reply to: #556951

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over a barrier
Subject: RE: Chicago Half Marathon
Nice work Luara...its was a perfect day for a race!!! Great weather and Pr's!
2006-10-02 9:08 AM
in reply to: #556951

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Expert
1092
1000252525
Earth
Subject: RE: Chicago Half Marathon

Wow, what a great race.  That is pretty impressive. 

It doesn't look like miles 10-11-12 took any longer than the others, just seemed like it did.



2006-10-02 11:02 AM
in reply to: #556951

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Crystal Lake, IL
Subject: RE: Chicago Half Marathon

Sounds to me like you were having a tough mental battle with the fatigue of the all-out 5k the day before, and you won!!!

Great job, Laura.  Congrats.

2006-10-02 1:16 PM
in reply to: #556951

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Master
1732
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Delafield, Wisconsin
Subject: RE: Chicago Half Marathon
yikes that is fast. way to beat the mental and physical hurdles.
2006-10-02 3:27 PM
in reply to: #556951

Regular
61
2525
Noblesville, Indiana
Subject: RE: Chicago Half Marathon
Great Race!!!!  Hope I have that mental toughness for the Chicago Marathon!  Nice PR!!!
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