Sunday, October 21, 2012

Race Day Wrap Up - Indianapolis - October 2012

This wrap up will be much different than the previous wrap ups because I really don't remember any of the specifics. Here are links to my previous wrap ups.

Mini 2012
Mini 2011

(I wasn't blogging in 2009 when I ran my first Mini.)

The Indianapolis Marathon (Half) was my fourth half-marathon (and Tom's eighth) but it was my first that wasn't the Mini. I was more nervous than I expected with it being a different course. I guess I just wasn't sure what to expect.

The race started at 8:30 and we arrived at the parking lot around 7:15 which was a nice change from the early start at the Minis. I didn't sleep well the night before and Jack was in our bed from about 5AM on, but I wasn't tired.

It was a cold morning (around 42 degrees at the start) and wasn't really supposed to get much warmer. So, I was a little unsure about what to wear. I decided to follow my mom's rule of thumb which is to dress for temperatures about 20 degrees warmer. So, I had on a running t-shirt and shorts and a lined running pullover. I also kept on a pair of sweats until right before the race when we dropped stuff at gear check. This made me pretty chilly at the start (just in shorts) but I had stripped off my running jacket by mile two. So, the rest of the race was just in a t-shirt and shorts and I was very comfortable and even got overheated around mile 10.

The line for the Port-A-Potties was long as usual. It always cracks me up to see the lines!

Tom and I right before the race. Ignore the massive bags under my eyes. :)

The start was great and fairly anti-climatic. They did a wave start so it wasn't too crowded. Tom was in corral B and I was in C. My only complaint about the race was that I didn't see a clock at the start line. There may have been one, but I didn't see it and I wasn't sure about when I actually crossed the line. I started my phone stop watch about 5 seconds before I crossed the line so I was able to track my time. My watch battery was dead or else I would have worn that to better pace myself. I made do just fine though and checked my phone at each mile.

This leads me to the main gist of the race though. I think I was able to enjoy the run more by NOT having any of the high tech gadgets I usually use (i.e. a watch) :). I simply checked my phone at each mile. At the first mile, I was right at a 9 minute pace which wasn't anything spectacular. But, I made up another 30 seconds by the second mile and I think another 15 by mile three. I think I was able to keep up with the nine minute pace for the rest of the race and then probably lost the extra 45 seconds during miles 10-13.1. I ended with a 8:59 pace and a time of 1:57:40 which is almost exactly 5 minutes off of my best time (2:02:43). I think I could have hit this during the last Mini had it not been so hot.

Overall, I didn't walk except through the last water station and felt really pretty good the whole time. There were certainly more hills on this course - most notably at mile 11.I slowed down around mile 11 but not too much. I used Gu packs this time for the first time (around 4.5 miles and 8.5 miles) and I think that helped some too. At one point, I started to get a bit of a headache (dehydration probably) and felt a bit prickly, fuzzy and hot. The last mile felt awesome though and went so fast which was a nice change from the Mini last year.  

This course was awesome and couldn't have happened at a better time of year. The guy in the white shirt with orange sleeves happened to be the one I paced off of for the last half of the race. He went on to do the full marathon when I cut off at 12.5 for the finish line. He was a nice and relaxed runner and was encouraging as well.

I loved the last part of the course - there is a final turn into the last .1 of the race. I actually got choked up as I made that turn and realized I was going to smoke my best time! Tom did awesome too and got his PR at 1:43 and change. We both said it was our favorite course and so pretty. I'll also say that it was nice to not run in such a crowded group and they did a great job with putting people in the right pace groups. I didn't see a single walker, which is not typical in the Mini. (Nothing against walkers, but it was nice to not have to bob and weave like the Mini.)

Now, I will say my recovery has been less than optimal. I felt like crap yesterday. I wasn't able to do anything other than shower and lay on the couch. I've never felt this bad after a race and thought I may actually get sick a few times. I guzzled a bunch of water and a Powerade and some coffee and managed to feel human enough to make it to a Rotary event in the evening. My feet are also a mess with blisters and I should probably figure that out before another race. Today, I've been hobbling around pretty bad and dreading tomorrow as I'm usually more sore the second day. Either way, it will all pass and I'll have my new personal best.

This is a race I will certainly do again! But, I will be taking a running break for a while. Feeling a little burnt out...

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