Tuesday, April 24, 2012

2012 Kansas Half Marathon Race Report - 4/22/12

It was a race for the ages...
The cards were stacked against me.  Raging winds, thunder, lightening and torrential rains all added up to the sum total of an EPIC half marathon.

Not really.

It was a little chilly, like 40's at the race start.  But, some clouds, some sun and a little running.

It's not very often that I find myself thinking about a half marathon as a ho-hum race that wasn't really a big deal.  Don't take me wrong, I'm not being egotistical.  It's not like I raced it it sub 1:20 or got podium overall.  Heck, I was 16th in my age group.  But, it served the purpose.

I had goals...
1. Don't hurt myself.
2. Finish the race as part of the Heartland 39.3 series.
3. Use it for more training than racing.
4. Have a good time.


Mind your training, save you it will...
My cycling could use some improvement, but my running is a bright spot.

Even though I was running at an average of 156 heart rate, it felt somewhat effortless.  Maybe it was the cramped sidewalk out and back portion and trying not to run into people that distracted me.  Maybe it was racing around Lawrence, the old stomping ground.  Maybe it was the oatmeal for dinner the night before.  Or, maybe it was some quality training and a spot on race plan and nutrition plan.

I ate some power blasts...
I'm not selling Powerbar, but those energy blasts seem to be working.  I ate most of the blasts 45 minutes out from the start and then cut off solids.  I was then on Push Endurance mixed with G2 for the race.

I did have to pee like a race horse before and 3 miles into the race.  I would have probably been 2 minutes faster of not for a port-a-potty stop.  Oh well.  Like I said, I wasn't going for a PR since this course had some nice hills and I raced pretty hard last weekend.  No need to kill the legs.  Plus, I wanted to get back to the heart rate training for long runs.  I was a little above my window, but that's what happens when you are surrounded by runners running a race...

I finished and went home...
It was as little fanfare as I have ever had after a race.  My friend I rode to Lawrence with and I grabbed some post race refreshments, looked at each other and said, "well, lets go."  Off we went for home.

Overall it was a quick race.  I left my Garmin on bike mode by accident, so I had time and distance, but no pacing info.  So, I was running by heart rate and PRE.  I didn't really know what my pace was and it felt pretty good.  I don't recall a half marathon going by so fast.

At least on the uphill in the wind I picked up the 1:45 pace group and tucked in behind a tall string bean and a stocky muscle head.  It was nice while they broke the wind and I rode the draft.  I need to remember that for next time.  Too bad drafting on bikes are a no-no.  =)

Another high point were the arm warmers from North Face Endurance Challenge last year.  I've used them for bike rides and not running.  It was great! They kept me from freezing, but since they were only on my arms, I didn't overheat with multiple layers of shirts.  Perfect.  I'm putting that in the vault for next time.

Official time : 01 : 43 : 17
Good for 175th overall, 16th in my age group.
Results are HERE.


The race was low key...
The Kansas Half Marathon is not as big as Rock the Parkway, but it had 2100 runners between the half and 5k.  It was by no means small, but it felt a little more down to earth.  It was more for the purist runners that enjoy a quality event without as much foo foo and fanfare.

They had  a start line, finishers chute, announcer, post race goodies, nice shirt and medal for finishers.  They goodie bags were quality and re-usable.  It was a practical event and well worth the price, especially if you got in for the $39.3 price early on.  You will not find a better half marathon event for less than $40 around KC.

Up next... the Trolley Run 4 miler.  Woo hoo!
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