Monday, November 29, 2010

Thanksgiving Day Run race report

We got to spend the Thanksgiving holiday with our family in Utah, and BRRR was it cold. A big winter storm blew through. It didn't leave much snow, but it left the coldest temperatures I've ever experienced. We had a great trip, but I am glad to be home and out of the cold and snow (which we hit on the way home)!

I met up with my speedy brother-in-law in the 10 degree (or less) weather for the International Thanksgiving Day run in Orem. I don't think I've ever run in that cold of temperature, even when I lived in Utah. After a good warm up (not sure you can call it that if you're still freezing!), we headed back inside to stay warm until the start. By the start of the race, I was ready to get the suffering over with. I had sort of given up the hope of winning a pie (2nd place age group award), because of the cold and all my extra layers. My main goal was to go under 25 minutes, but that would be in question as well.

I also forgot to pack my watch for this trip, so I had to just run this race by feel. After a quick jump off the starting line, I settled into what I thought was a pretty good pace. I felt a little slow all bundled up with a scarf over my face, two jackets and long pants, but that was ok. I hit the first mile marker really wishing I could check my split, but oh well. I just focused on the group ahead of me and gradually made my way toward them. I eventually caught that group, but another small group caught me. By about 3.5 miles, though, I managed to catch all but one of them. I thought I might be able to catch another couple in the final stretch, but their final kick matched mine. As I approached the finish, I could still see 24:something on the clock. My face was a little frozen, and my eyes too blurry to make out how much time I had before 25. Just as I came close enough to focus, it turned to 25, and six seconds later, I crossed the line. So close.

Official stats:
Time: 25:06
Overall place: 22nd
Age group: 1st
Age group award: Turkey! I guess Christmas dinner is covered. :-)

Monday, November 8, 2010

Growing, Glowing, and Going: Slacker

The latest in my wife's exercise and pregnancy posts where she discusses the discomfort of a growing belly and her transition to walking as opposed to running, a reminder of how important exercise is for the fetus and mommy, as well as a little bit about chocolate. Click the link below to read the full post.

Growing, Glowing, and Going: Slacker

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Grand Canyon Marathon Race Report

I've been deceived! The map and elevation chart made this marathon look tough, but they did not do this course justice! This thing was by far the hardest marathon I have ever completed. I'm just happy I was able to complete it.

I started out running with a buddy of mine who had similar training times as me. We were sticking to our plan of a 7:45 average pace. That was supposed to be completely manageable considering the training I've put in. But by about mile 10, I could tell the elevation (7000 ft.) was really affecting me, and had to slow it up a bit, and my buddy took off. He was cruising. I managed the next 10 miles running around 8-8:30 minutes per mile, and then slipping to 9-ish. At mile 20 there was supposed to be a pretty big hill lasting a little over 2 miles. That was a lie! That hill seemed to never ended until mile 25. I was forced to walk for several minutes during each of those miles, and was putting in 11-12 minute miles. It was awful. I've never had to do that before. Luckily the last mile was mostly down hill, and I finished with a 10:40 mile. My official time was exactly 3:59, and I finished 10th overall.

This was my first time ever to the Grand Canyon, and it was amazing. Even though this race was incredibly tough, the views were even more incredible--almost making the killer course worth it. I definitely have plans to go back to the Grand Canyon, but I don't think I'll be running this marathon again. Maybe just the half. :-)