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Houston Half Marathon - RunHalf Marathon

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Houston, Texas
United States
Houston Marathon Committee
50F / 10C
Total Time = 2h 35m 5s
Overall Rank = 4947/
Age Group = 40-44
Age Group Rank = 0/
Pre-race routine:

My pre-race routine is to try to remain as calm as possible. I tend to get myself a bit worked up and it makes my tummy not happy. My running partner was to get me by 4:45 am so I showered dressed and made peanut butter and syrup sandwiches for all of us. This is a huge event with tons of people so things are a bit hectic. It makes keeping calm a little challenging as well. I managed keeping my nerves in check overall. I made a couple of new friends waiting around for my running partners to get there stuff settled and enjoyed the pre race chat. I also saw Bonnie (Mrs. Fish), Joe (Freeswimmingfish) and another woman, who right now I can't remember her name. I am terrible about that, it usually takes a couple of times to have it sink in
Event warmup:

This amounted to heading out to find our corral and get one last potty break in. The lines outside got shorter the closer you got to the corral area. We managed to get to the back of the black corral as people were beginning to move to the start. We did jog over to the area so I guess this will count as our "warmup".
  • 2h 35m 5s
  • 13.1 miles
  • 11m 50s  min/mile

We walked a long way to the start but we finally saw the mats and began to trot along with the thousands of others trying to get under way. There was a lot of weaving in and out but it really kept my mind off of the fact that we were really on our way to running a 1/2 marathon. I ran into to Celeste (Citysky) very close to the first couple of miles and chatted for a it, then she was off. My partners and I continued to weave and move ahead steadily and started to look around a bit more. It was so exciting to see all the people on the streets, it was hard to hold to our decided pace. We managed about a 12 minute first mile then managed an 11 minute mile for the next two or three miles. We also noted the men visiting the bamboo port o' potty and added to the cat calling! What a sight! We stopped after mile 4 for a potty break of our own. Not bad and there was still paper available! We also started on our hydration and eating plan. We used water to start, had a couple of clif bloks then added gatorade after about mile 6. The gatorade was too heavy tasting to me so I added water each time and sipped this. We made great progress and seemed in good shape. I was beginning to notice a little tightness in my right hip and ham string area, but this was a normal thing so I didn't give it much thought. My right pinkie toe was also becoming more tender but I just kept moving. About mile 8, I found that I had a very tight cramp in my upper shoulder, neck area. I was trying to stretch my neck and drop my right arm but it was not releaving it. At mile 9 at the water station, I took two ibuprofen and more gatorade. The cramp went away with the fluids and I decided to eat another clif blok. I was better but I knew it would be a hard 4 miles to the finish. I was slowing down but trying hard to keep up with my partners. Who by the way, Teresa at this point is skipping and playing with the crowd and in general having a great time. Cindy seemed fresher than me as well but beginning to show signs of the strain. Teresa was the cheerleader and kept me going! I believe this is where the band on Montrose playing country music. Terese is learning to play the guitar and one of the tunes she practices is Fulsom Prison Blues, by Johnny Cash. Just as we come up the band, they break out with Fulsom Blues!! Teresa begins singing and jumping about like a groupy and a rock concert! Much to the pleasure of the band so they play harder and louder for us as we go by!! What a great boost! We were pumped up for another mile or two. I think at this point she even scored some trail mix from a couple of the police officers working the race. What a blessing to have such a positive force running with you. Without her, I would have been walking at this point. From the 9 mile mark, we just visiualized our 4 mile training route and kept calling out the street names that we would be on if we were running there. It really helped keep me focused. As we made it past the 10 mile mark, our furthest run at that point, we could feel the energy from the crowd and see the full guys on the other side. We also started looking for the beer that was promised by the HRTC folks! We passed mile marker 11, no beer, where are they? Then as we come up a small incline we hear them, "Don't forget your beer!" We dashed to the side and snagged a small but refreshing drink of cold beer!!! What a boost that was! Then we headed down and closer to downtown. Teresa's energy level and encouragement just grew bigger. "We've got this, girl's" became her mantra. As we turned on Rusk to make the final two miles, she starts shouting my name and the crowd picks it up. I just about fell over as the sound of my own name started to echo off the buildings. I wouldn't have stopped now for anything! As we passed the 12 mile marker, Cindy kissed it and we tried to push a little harder. Teresa, "I going to get me a piece of the finish line" Come on girl's, let's get us a big ol' piece of that finish line! All I could do was smile and keep running! I really didn't have a lot left but pushed a little harder anyway. We all crossed the line together!!!! What great friends, I have!!! Teresa could have finished at least 30-45 minutes faster than me but she was out there to support me and keep me motivated! She did that with great flare and enthusiasm! I wish I could bottle that energy and take it with me.
What would you do differently?:

Train a bit more, maybe. Push a little harder? I don't really know. I will continue to work on my running and hopefull, time will make the difference for me.
Post race
Warm down:

Walking, and some stretching. I just tried to keep moving. I was very tight and stopping was not a good idea. I ran into Holly (Tri4good) at the finish and talked a minute.

What limited your ability to perform faster:

Just lack of mileage, maybe.

Event comments:

This is a huge event in Houston and it is well run and well supported. I will do this again!

Last updated: 2006-11-13 12:00 AM
02:35:05 | 13.1 miles | 11m 50s  min/mile
Age Group: 0/
Overall: 0/
Performance: Good
Course: Wet streets
Keeping cool Good Drinking Just right
Post race
Weight change: %
Overall: Good
Mental exertion [1-5] 3
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: Average
Race evaluation [1-5] 5

2007-01-15 9:22 AM

Subject: Houston Half Marathon

2007-01-15 9:32 AM
in reply to: #654703

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Extreme Veteran
Tucson, AZ
Subject: RE: Houston Half Marathon
Congratulations! Sounds like you have wonderful friends and really enjoyed the experience. Most of all, to say that you had fun after running 13.1Miles is what is most important!
2007-01-15 9:53 AM
in reply to: #654703

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Houston, TX
Subject: RE: Houston Half Marathon
Great job! Sorry we never got to meet up! Congratulations!
2007-01-15 10:18 AM
in reply to: #654703

New user

Katy, TX
Subject: RE: Houston Half Marathon

Great job!  Isn't great to have such an awesome race in your home town!  Congrats on finishing your first half!

2007-01-15 2:51 PM
in reply to: #654703

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Subject: RE: Houston Half Marathon
What a feeling that must have been to hear your name echoing through the streets by the crowd cheering YOU on specifically.  I would probably remember that for the rest of my life. 
It sounds like your friends are absolutely cool and beautiful and fun and fabulous.  
What a great way to race.  And you ran the whole way.  You ROCK. 
2007-01-15 4:17 PM
in reply to: #654703

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Carlsbad, California
Subject: RE: Houston Half Marathon
Hey, thanks for the great report

Sounds like another big success story at Houston. (A lot of folks really had a good day out there)

That is so cool that your friend offered to pace your little group through the race. It sure does help; especially toward the latter part of the race if/when things go into speed wobble

Sounds like you had a great time out there and really enjoyed your half.

Good On Ya

2007-01-17 3:38 PM
in reply to: #654703

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Katy, TX (west of Houston)
Subject: RE: Houston Half Marathon
Congrats on a great race!  Isn't it awesome to have friends to share the experience with?  We hope to see you at the next one
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