>> Monday, January 25, 2010
Or, “I Suppose 30 and Drizzle is Better Than Last Year (15 Below but Sunny)”
Or, “Running While Talking Videos”
Saturday was the St. Paul Winter Carnival Half Marathon. Last year, it was way below zero, and it was shortened to a long 10K (click here to see those photos). This year, it was about 50 degrees warmer: it was in the mid-30s and drizzling / sleeting:
Standard pre-race “on the potty” shot
I got back inside and started looking for people I knew. Soon I ran into Guy, Jenny, Julie, and Beth. (Guy and Jenny did that trail race with Pharmie back in October, Julie is a new blogger, and I met Beth at the second “GW Splash and Dash” last summer.) We grabbed a quick photo:
Guy, Me, Jenny, Julie, and Beth. And yes, I have a fist coming out of my crotch - no teasing...
I got outside, and Dave Ryan (local morning-show DJ) was working the crowd:
Note: All the photos from this point on are from the digital camera that I ran with. But I didn’t take PHOTOS - I took a few short VIDEOS throughout the race. The full video will be up shortly, but in the meantime, below are some SCREENSHOTS from a bunch of short videos from the race. So that’s why the quality sucks.
My goal was to go out SLOW and REALLY ease into the race. On a GREAT day, I thought I might be able to break 1:30, but I really just wanted to break 1:32 while running a fun race if possible. We headed down the hill to the river. I was easing up and letting some people pass me without trying to keep up to everyone. I was running in about 30th place.
Rain falling while running by the river
Mile 1: 6:22. “Oops. Slow it up Steve!!”
Mile 2: 6:42. “Still... ease up.”
Mile 3: 6:48. “Better...”
I was feeling great, but I hoped that I didn’t go out too hard. At this point, I was 67 seconds ahead of my pace from 2 years ago at the same race (where I broke 1:30:00). OF COURSE that was on my mind, but I’m smart enough to know that “on pace to do [blank]” means nothing at mile 3 of a half marathon.
Here’s a little downhill stretch just after mile 3:
Just after the aid station around mile 4, there was a guy in front of me that pull to the center of the road and started puking:
Gross. I hope you got through the rest of the race OK, buddy.
At mile 5, I was still feeling GREAT, and my total time was 33:39. I did some quick math, and realized that if I ran 7-minute miles from this point, I’d be right around 1:30. I grinned a little to myself. Seven-minute miles from this point on sounded like a cakewalk. But there was a LOT of race left to be run.
Mile 6: 6:46. “I still feel great! Should think about upping the pace shortly!...”
Running up to the turn-around, I heard a PA system and a familiar voice. It was Gary Westlund from Charities Challenge!! He was hosting a party at the turn-around and he got a photo of me:
After the turn-around, I saw Chad pretty quickly. I kept looking for other runners that I knew. I LOVE out-and-back races for that reason! Here’s a boat-load of people running out towards the turn-around:
Mile 7 and 8: 14:15. “Shoot. Time to pick up the pace. Go harder NOW.”
Mile 9: 6:56. “Thought I was working harder than that. Dang.”
I chit-chatted with a LOT of people on the way back into downtown St. Paul. One guy said “I’ve NEVER seen someone taking pictures during a race.” I laughed and said “Well, you STILL haven’t - technically, I’m taking video!” I was talking to more people in the second half of the run because I was passing a lot of people. But the bottom of my feet were getting SORE. I was hoping that I still had 4 miles left in them!...
Leading up to mile 10 was a little bastard of a hill. It’s only about 2-3 blocks long, but it was making my hammies burn. Here’s the base of the hill:
Mile 10: 6:44. “Good! GO. NOW. HARD. GO.”
It was hard running out there because I had passed a group of people in front of me, and now the road ahead was pretty lonely:
No, that’s not a speck on your screen. It’s an eagle. Trust me.
Mile 12: 7:27. (long)
They need to move that mile 11 mile marker - it was placed too early 2 years ago too. So I was knew that a long mile 12 was coming after seeing a sub-6 mile 11.
I was giving it my all. I KNEW I had sub-1:30 at this point, but could I PR?!? My PR was 1:28:05, and I’d have a LOT of work to break that, but by-golly, I was going to give it a shot!
The last few blocks along the river was where the wind was the worst - other than that, the wind wasn’t a big deal out there. I passed Kirt and said hi. I turned on my camera and started filming just before I rounded the final corner. We ran under a bridge and up the final SOB of a hill. Here’s that final 1-1.5 block hill as I was still under the bridge:
Official Results: 1:28:55
34 out of 786 overall
8 out of 53 in the 25-29 age group
1 out of ?? in the “carry your camera and take videos throughout the race” category
Ummmm..... that last category might not officially exist. ;) As I was still recording, I swung the camera back and got a shot of me breathing hard and HAPPY to be done:
I hope to put together my first ever “video race report” in the next day or 2, so stop back to see that shortly! Thanks everyone! (Oh, and thanks to everyone who left me such nice comments on my Twitter feed just after the race! Thanks guys!)