Half Marathon; no, Quarter Marathon; no, 10K; no 10.25K Race Report! Whew!

>> Monday, January 26, 2009

We found out the day before the race that the Winter Carnival Half Marathon was going to be shortened to a Quarter Marathon because of the cold. Regardless, we were ready to go.

I sat down in the living room with all the clothes I as going to race in. I weighed myself before and after - the difference was nearly 5 pounds of fabric!

Borsch showed up to take Pharmie and I to the race, and we were off. When we got downtown, we saw a sign that said the air temp was 12 below with a wind chill of about 20-25 below. Sweet. We got out of Borsch's car, and Pharmie started adding more layers:

We got inside and went to get our race packets. Here's Pharmie and Borsch riding up the escalator. (One thing to note in this photo is how there's hardly anyone in the background - last year, the place was packed at this time. We knew that some people had stayed in bed on a cold, cold day like this.)

We started to hear them saying that the Half Marathon was shorted to a 10K, not a Quarter Marathon. "Whatever," we thought - it's all about the same.

We got our stuff, and then ran into Jeremy. Shortly after, Jen showed up. We all duct taped our shoes with the tape I brought along. Here's Jen taping her shoes:

The duct tape helps seal the heat in your shoes - when you tape over the mesh top of your shoes, your toes will stay warmer in cold conditions. Here's 4 of us with tape over our feet:

We had to make a couple of porta-potty runs, but that was no problem, because there was NO LINE! Here's Pharmie headed to the potty. She was afraid that she was going to freeze to the seat (seriously, she was):

When I went, I just had to go #1, so I didn't have to sit down. I was pretty amused at the amount of steam coming off my pee-stream. I contemplated taking a photo. I didn't. (Yes, I took my camera into the porta-potty incase a photo moment arose.)

So, here's the whole bloggy gang getting ready to run:

From left to right, that's Borsch, BaddApple, and Badd's son: these 3 were running the 5K. Then it's Jen, Jeremy, Pharmie, and I, who were all doing the 10K.

Pharmie put on a few more layers as we were getting ready to run outside to the start, and we grabbed one more photo:

So us "10K-ers" ran out into the cold. I kissed Pharmie and wished her luck. (I didn't kiss Jeremy and Jen.) I hopped in line near the front. Here's people bundled up getting ready to run:

Check out all the steam coming off these people:

Before we knew it, someone came on the loud-speaker, and said "Everybody on their marks... GO! We were off! We ran a few blocks before headed down a steep hill. Here's the race map and elevation chart:

Check out that downhill in the first half-mile! Then the course is mostly gentle rollers. After that downhill, we turned to run along the river. It was a true out-and-back course. When I rounded that corner, I realized I was running in 5th place. That was a problem. I'm not that fast. I felt just fine, but I knew I must be going too hard.

Mile 1: 5:56. "Yep, too hard! Slow it up, Steve." Over the next half mile, I dropped back to about 25th. I could already see little ice crystals forming on my upper cheek just below my eye. So I grabbed my camera and took a photo of me huffing and puffing:

Smith Street High-Bridge in the background

I had trouble turning my camera off because of the 2 layers I was wearing over my hands, and I accidently took another photo without knowing it. It might just be the most horrible photo of me ever:

I haven't asked Pharmie, but I HOPE this isn't my "O Face." Lucky girl.

Mile 2: 6:29. "Better pace."
Mile 3: 6:38. "Umm, that's getting a little too slow." My legs were fine. I was warm enough. But the biggest thing I noticed was that my breathing was REALLY forced - the cold air was not going in and out as easy as "normal" air. I was hurting.

Turn around: 20:23. (Later, we were told that it was officially a 10.25K, so that's my 5.125K split.)

After turning around, we turned back WITH the wind. So we all got a little warmer. I saw Jen first: "Go Jen." Then Jeremy: "Alright Jeremy." Then Pharmie: "Go Hun!" I really didn't think I'd see all 3 of them - we all look the same when we're bundled up so much.

Nearing mile 4, I grabbed the camera again. I was REALLY hurting. I took another HORRIBLE photo of me working way too hard:

Notice the ice up my nose

That photo shows the peak of ice on my stubble. After running with the wind for another 2 miles, I warmed up a little and some of it melted off. If you don't run in the cold, you might not know this, but that ice on my face DOESN'T mean I'm cold. I was about the right temperature throughout the entire race. That ice is just condensation freezing on hair. No biggie. If you're from somewhere cold, you totally know what I'm talking about.

Right around mile 4, I started tasting blood. I wiped my face on my sleeve, and there was blood. Damn. The cold, dry air made me get a bloody nose. What could I do? I just powered through. I missed the "mile 4 marker," so here are my splits at mile 5:

Mile 4 and 5: 12:35
(6:17.5 average for those 2 miles)

From mile 4 through the finish, I REALLY wanted to stop and walk. I was hurting. I had gone out too hard, and I was paying the price. The bloody nose was making me feel a little weird too. "Steve, you're just looking for an excuse to walk. The bloody nose isn't that bad. Get over it. Keep running!" OK, internal thoughts, you're right.

Once I hit the base of that final killer hill, I knew I wouldn't have to walk. I knew I was around 20th place, and there were 2 guys just in front of me. I passed one of them up the hill, and caught the other one on the final 2 blocks to the finish.

Mile 6 and last 0.3ish: 8:31

Official Time: 40:10 for a 10.25K
Pace: 6:19/mile
Place: 18 out of 670
Age Group: 6 out of 43

I got through the finishers chute, and I snapped this great photo that I showed in the last post:

I cheered for other runners. After a few minutes, Borsch came running by as he was finishing his 5K:

Then Jen finished her 10K. She wins the "least epic finishers photo" of the day. Sorry Jen:

Then Jeremy came in:

Finally, Pharmie came in:

We all ran inside to warm up. After standing around for a while, Jen started quivering so bad! We all split up and headed home. I started documenting the blood that I got all over myself during the race.

Blood on my sleeve

Lower down my sleeve

On my pants

On my gloves

Despite temps of about 10 below with a wind chill of about 20-25 below, we all still had a great time!! Back in a few days with official race photos (they said they were out there, but I didn't see any photographers standing around in that crazy cold... we'll see...).

In the meantime, swing by the other runners blog's to see what they have to say: Borsch, BaddApple, Jen, Jeremy, and my cutie Pharmie.

Happy Monday!


Shannon 5:38 AM, January 26, 2009  

and I was complaining of some "wind?"

this cracked me up,..."Mile 3: 6:38. "Umm, that's getting a little too slow." you are super fast even when your getting slow.

awesome race photos

C 6:04 AM, January 26, 2009  

Good lord. Why didn't you wear something to cover your face?! I'm surprised bits of it didn't start to fall off.

Good job, all of you. I'm very impressed with your dedication. Now cover up next time! :)

duchossois 6:21 AM, January 26, 2009  

Great photos, as always. I know the stubble frost phenomena well. Its much worse if you have a beard. Check out my photo from my Saturday run.

Nat 6:22 AM, January 26, 2009  

That's cold.

What we all want to know is, do you wear wind briefs under all that???

Carly 6:26 AM, January 26, 2009  

You are nuts, I was complaining that my car was still cold after running it for 15 minutes. Great race report and great photos. I hope you finally thawed out.

Missy 6:39 AM, January 26, 2009  

Jen and Pharmie still look good at the end, can I hate them?! I always look like I'm dying. Congrats on the finish. My blood has thinned and I'm just too big of a whoosy to that these days. Great pictures.

teacherwoman 6:52 AM, January 26, 2009  

OMG. Temps were the same here in Fargo this weekend and I could barely stand running from the car to the arena saturday night. brrr. Those pictures say it all!

Anonymous,  7:36 AM, January 26, 2009  

I think this is a good series, with some narrative to it.

I especially admire the second photo, of Pharmie layering in the garage. I like the yellow light, the way it gleams on the bottle of water. Really a beautiful picture, which reminds me that you're a professional photographer after all....

It's like a classic b-movie, say "Slightly Scarlet," where John Alton applies film noir effects to colour, and everything's done by light....

I hope you're working on a big installation about running....

I also admire the first photo, but that's just your crazy ankles....

Which reminds me.... No trade-mark GROSS FOOT PHOTO? There must have been some great GROSS material, all salt-damaged and frost-bitten....

Remember! You may think you're the IRONMAN ANSELL ADAMS, but to the public you're only as good as your LAST GROSS FOOT....

Collin Kromke 8:21 AM, January 26, 2009  

Love the gloves. I work for the company and wouldn't even know how to get them!

triguyjt 8:29 AM, January 26, 2009  

awesome stuff steve...howcome jen wasn't even ice covered??haha

man...I think I would draw the line at like...0 degrees...you are insane..but thats why I always drop by... good job to borsch and pharmie and jeremy too....

ShirleyPerly 8:34 AM, January 26, 2009  

You all are UNBELIEVABLE!!! I had 5 layers on in 40-degree weather while working a race this weekend and that was cold enough to keep a lot of folks home, it seemed. Cannot imagine what it's like to run or work a race in sub-zero temps!

KodaFit 9:02 AM, January 26, 2009  

As they say down under...

You're a Legend Mate!

Jim Smith II 9:06 AM, January 26, 2009  

DUDE!!! It's a good thing you added that it was just ice on your beard because I would have figured the beginnings of frostbite!

Great photos and report, congrats to all of you!

tfh 9:10 AM, January 26, 2009  

The photos you took of yourself while racing are priceless. And brave. The bloody nose, while gross, is like icing on the icy cake...

Carolina John 9:34 AM, January 26, 2009  

haha, i love the "frozen drool ice beard" shot. that's too funny!

glad you had a good race and great time.

Marlene 9:35 AM, January 26, 2009  

Congrats to all - it was an accomplishment just to get out there. Great pics and excellent time too!

J 9:46 AM, January 26, 2009  

wow that race must have been cold! Great job on the finish! Good idea about the duct tape on the shoes - I will have to remember that.

The Boring Runner 9:49 AM, January 26, 2009  

WOW, I'm even from a coldish climate and I don't totally understand the frost NOT meaning your cold.

I've always wondered - where do you store a camera during your runs? do you run w/ a pack or something? Feel free to reply to the comment or reply to a post on my blog - http://adamrisu.blogspot.com/

The Boring Runner 10:06 AM, January 26, 2009  

Thanks! Who wulda thunk it was such a low tech approach! :) I need to start doing that so everyone can see my ruby red face while I pant along.....

Kim 10:09 AM, January 26, 2009  

OMG i have never seen such pictures before in my life. way to really kick ass despite the cold temps and bloody nose! you guys are troopers! (and how do you take pictures when youre running so fast?)!

Unknown 10:29 AM, January 26, 2009  

Wow... you are all rockstars! That's all I can say! ;)

Erica Ortiz 10:48 AM, January 26, 2009  

you know, posts like this one make me think you all are part super-hero up there. The idea of running OUTSIDE in negative conditions ranks up there with... I don't know... some sort of medieval torture!

Give me 100 degree weather and 1000% humidity, and I'll run all day, but that cold stuff is unimaginable!!!

Kudos to my Super Heros!

Emily 11:05 AM, January 26, 2009  

You Minnesotans are bad ass mofos! Maybe I missed it, but was the surface you were running on at least clear of ice/snow? Great job tackling it! I would have stayed in bed...

Aron 11:06 AM, January 26, 2009  

WOW you guys are serious rockstars... no way i would have been out there :) i dont even know what negative temps feel like!

Marcy 11:41 AM, January 26, 2009  

Wha?!? OMFG Dood! That is just insane! Wow!

21stCenturyMom 11:45 AM, January 26, 2009  

You cold weather people are looney. Admirably looney, but looney none the less.

Well done, sir! I think it's a good thing they cut race in half or your face might have shattered into a thousand pieces somewhere along the course.

Alisa 11:52 AM, January 26, 2009  

You guys are soooo bad ass!

Thanks, btw, for not taking a photo in the port-a-potty. (My Dad actually lost a camera to the port-a-potty gods once...I've never taken a camera in for that exact reason!)

Charisa 12:38 PM, January 26, 2009  

Awesome - great photos! Stay warm!!

Jess 12:39 PM, January 26, 2009  

I have never heard of duct taping shoes! Of course, before I lived in MN, I also had never seen cars drive on lakes, I'd never seen cardboard ties to the front of trucks, and I'd never heard people say "for cute." That MN, it's a unique place!

Nice job on your race.

Michelle 1:09 PM, January 26, 2009  

Dude you are so freaking hardcore runner!!!

Those photos are amazing. Especially the one with the ice up your nose!!!!

The blood photos, ummm not so much!!!

Great report!!!! My broken toe and myself salute you!!!!!

triguyjt 1:15 PM, January 26, 2009  

LMAO on your comment on my blog.....

I was impressed by the skating...its much more impressive in person....

but you will never catch me in running or tri-suits with sequins.....

I am just saying. Hope Pharmie enjoyed the skating...

Sparkly J.T.

jen 1:18 PM, January 26, 2009  

Wow, congrats on an awesome time in a freezing cold race. Yikes. The duct tape, the layers of clothes, etc seemed to serve you well! Glad you all made it through with smiles on your faces. I love the closeups of everyone's frosty faces. How cool. :)

Looking at the race results, it blows my mind that people are faster than you. LOL. Wow.

Chic Runner 2:05 PM, January 26, 2009  

WOW steve. Congrats to you all for finishing in such frigid conditions! Great race and pics as usual!

Rachel 3:17 PM, January 26, 2009  

Congrats on the race! I would never have been able to race in those conditions!

Anonymous,  3:35 PM, January 26, 2009  

We ended up skipping the race because of the temps. My mentee doesn't have cold weather gear, and the last 5k we "ran" took us over an hour (she likes to sit down a lot). So, yeah, I figured it would probably be safest to stay indoors.

Congrats on finishing the race while hemorrhaging. Impressive.

Zach 6:46 PM, January 26, 2009  

Excellent photos and great race. I really like the duct tape idea - might have to try that on the colder days here (not that our cold days are anywhere near your cold days). I do know what you mean when you talk about the face ice even though you are warm. People in CA always looked at me a little funny when I told them about cold MT winters and how if you breathed in really deep through your nose your nostrils would stick together.

MHMarks 7:28 PM, January 26, 2009  

Where do you make those sweet elevation profile maps?

trihrdrgrl 9:36 PM, January 26, 2009  

You make me feel like a wimp for not going out and facing the cold for a couple weeks now! I am soo sticking to the treadmill until we get close to 25! But that was before reading this. I might be out there sooner then I think! :)

Unknown 9:52 PM, January 26, 2009  

Pharmie is so lucky to have a guy with an o' face like that.

Sarah 10:11 PM, January 26, 2009  

I was scared to read this. But I'm glad I did - I laughed several times. I only wish I could have seen a picture of the steaming pee. And now I'm going to go crawl under my electic blanket and try to warm up! Damn power of suggestion!

brendaj 1:30 AM, January 27, 2009  

Quite an amazing snow face.

Ordinarylife 7:18 AM, January 27, 2009  

Ok, you are all officially MAD! How on earth do you run in weather like that. I mean you have ice up your nose for pity sakes!!!!

I don't think I will ever complain about the cold here again - we have never even seen ice. EVER!

Well done though.

Diana 10:34 AM, January 27, 2009  

WOW! what timing to read this post....I went for a run the other day and my big R toe is now considered "frost bite". I was wondering if duct tape would help...why didn't I read this earlier??? I should have known, duct tape is good for EVERYTHING! I love the pics of ice faces.....you guys are true runners! I bow down! Are you doing the Green Bay marathon this year???

BaddApple 3:05 PM, January 27, 2009  

It was great seeing everyone at race. I'm glad everyone faired well and survived the cold. It was cold but it really turned out to be a fun adventure and a nice bonding experience for my son and I. Also he sat a PR for himself! Steve if you could send the the group picture that would be great.

TriShannon 4:08 PM, January 27, 2009  

Um, this just looks and sounds miserable. :) Glad you had fun!

Jo Lynn 4:46 PM, January 27, 2009  

There is no way in hell (or heaven) I could/would run in that cold. OMG. You are my new hero!

X-Country2 6:39 PM, January 27, 2009  

They better have given out some kick ass swag bag. Dang. Beyond impressive.

Great tip on the shoe tape. I'll have to steal that.

Spokane Al 9:38 PM, January 27, 2009  

Dnag that is cold! Congratulations on a brutally fast, cold race.

audgepodge 11:41 PM, January 27, 2009  

These pictures are insane. and oh yeah, unbelievably AWESOME. you and your gang are hardcore!

Unknown 6:09 PM, January 28, 2009  

I just counted.... 10,000 flakes on your face. That's explain where you are from.

Runner Leana 4:45 PM, January 30, 2009  

Holy crap that looks cold out there. Good job on racing in those conditions. I might have been one of those people who would have stayed home!

Kelly 4:48 PM, January 31, 2009  

Good job with the race!

That duct tape idea is SOO smart... ha... like I EVER run outside in the winter!

220TriLog 12:56 AM, December 11, 2010  


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