I just realized I haven’t posted anything for April. Bad form Steve! You know that in social media content is key! And yes everyone, social media encompasses more than Facebook and Twitter! At least I am getting this post up at the (close to) midnight hour.
April was a great month for half marathons. First off I had the Lincoln Presidential Half Marathon in Springfield. It was a great course. Perfect weather and what some people might consider challenging hills. Hills have never really bothered me so long as it isn’t too many. The Lincoln impersonator was also fun and the medals for the race were nine kinds of awesome. I managed to come in at a little over 1:41, which was a new P.R. My last P.R. was 1:45, so it was great to update that number.
Only a few weeks after I had the Illinois Half Marathon. With the great performance at the last race, my coach set the bar even higher and really packed on some race pace training. Race day didn’t start as well as I would have liked. It rained the whole way to Champaign-Urbana, which had me on pins and needles for the race. And then traffic was so bad that I eventually parked roughly a mile away and ran to the start line. I still missed the start of my wave. But no reason to panic. Chip start! Plus panicking wastes energy that I can use during a race.
I took some time to stretch and make myself ready, and took off right before the second wave was released. I was assigned to the first. I am proud to say I had virtually no problem holding an overall 7:30 min/mile pace. Though once again I have to credit that to the work I put into it as opposed to fluke natural ability. My overall time was 1:38:26, which is less than 100 minutes! It may seem weird, but I like how that sounds… “I can run 13.1 miles in less than 100 minutes!”
Of course that makes sense if you know that during any running I phrase the timing in such a way so that it doesn’t sound as bad as it is. Example: After about two minutes of running a half marathon I announce that there is only 12 miles and some change to go. Mentally it helps. And that’s all that matters.
I have always loved the half marathon distance. It’s definitely my favorite running race distance. I’d pick it over a 5k or 10k any day. The signs people hold up are hilarious. Plus there are beer and hot dog aid stations, which are cruel since I can’t actually partake, but also funny. Don’t get me wrong. There is a moment when I am getting dressed at 4:30 a.m. for these races on Saturday morning that I am thinking about how much I’d rather be sleeping, but overall I wouldn’t trade it. Way too much fun and it makes you feel way too good. If I sound like I’m full of it, do one and then I’ll listen to whatever you have to say!
I’m looking forward to switching modes to triathlons in the near future. My biking needs to be improved. I am confident in my running. I can slog my way through most swims, but biking is something I need to learn to love. In time. In time.