Goal fall race today - the hillbilly hike HM back home in iowa from indianola to my hometown of carlisle. Ran a PR here just a year ago and have had a great fall of training so was hoping for another - but it just wasn't in the cards.
Got up at 4am just so I could be awake for a while before running, got the packet and to the start line by 7, it was still dark until just right before the race started (last day before daylight savings time). normal warmup of 1.6 and pre-race routine. Day was decent weather, about 44 degrees with light mist at the start and overcast, slight ENE wind 5-6mph, which on this course is a slight headwind, which is opposite of the pure tailwind we had last year. Told my brother good luck, he was going for sub 1:30.
The start was weird, some guy just stopped and started counting down and yelled "go" so really could have been anyone, but we all took off - kind of unorganized. seemed to be close to on time, although I thought it would start way late given the relative disorganization about 5 minutes before the official race time. Luckily my watch kept my splits this time! Here they are:
1- 6:03 (slow start, but didn't want to go out too quickly)
3- 5:48 (17:49 at 3 miles)
6- 5:59 (17:39 next 3, 35:28 at 6 miles, 36:3X on 10k, pretty good split, most of the downholl in this first part and I wanted to really open it up to bank some time. happy with where I was here, but knew I was already in for a tough day as my turnover just wasn't great
9 - 6:05 (18:05 last 3, 53:33 for 9 miles)
10- 6:10 (at mile 9 we come out of the protected part of the trail and run in a relatively open stretch eastward. even though it was only 5-6 mph, I definitely felt the headwind on this 2-3 mile stretch and my times slowed considerably even though my effort felt normal) wasn't getting the turnover either, so just not a great combo and I was grinding for sure) 59:43 at 10 mile mark, not terrible at all, but not PR pace by about 1 minute
12- 6:01 ( 18:18 last 3, 1:11:51 for 12 miles, just under 6 pace) turned the corner for home at 11.2 miles and finally had the headwind turn off) threw in a concious surge, and was nice to see my mile times come down again - maybe it really was the cold wind in my face that slowed me down, deep down I know I was tired though, not sure if its just the crazy mileage year, but just couldn't go much faster even though i was trying
13 - 5:52 (nice way to finish, one of my fastest miles of the day
change - 42 seconds -not sure exactly how far this was, just put change cuz its what my watch had, i was kicking
total - 1:18:27, 5:59 avg pace, 3rd fastest time I've ever run.
Overall, I am happy with this effort. I ran as hard as I could today effortwise and just wasn't a PR day. Still a really good time for me, and although that sub 1:17 is still elusive, I learned a lot today. Namely, I learned that I can grind and even though my mile times may start slipping, that slide is not irreversible and I proved I can turn it around (like i did with my last 3 miles). My body could be pretty tired from this record mileage year and I've really been hitting it hard with 2 fulls in the spring and then not a ton of rest between cycles. Lots of excuses, but the time today shows that I am really either a little worn out or the simple fact that last year's PR was perfect conditions and everything came together and with all the success I've been having lately, its a good reminder that not every day is a PR day. Again, overall, a very good effort, one of my best half marathon times ever, just really pushing myself right now and setting my expectations above and beyond.
My brother ran his PR at 1:30:01 and finished 14th and won his age group (he is 17). always fun to be able to bond over running! 1.6 cooldown