Monday, August 4, 2014

8/2/14 Tacoma Narrows Half Marathon

4th time here, but it has been a couple of years.  A while back Jody was looking for a half and we picked this one.  Too bad her training did not go as planned and she will not try to be fast here.  But we will come race it anyway. 

To make things easier before the race, I picked up our numbers the day before.  This morning we drive to the start at the airport and will take a shuttle bus back after.  We get there at about 7AM, thirty minutes before the 7:30 start.

A few clouds and a smattering of weird giant rain drops.  It has been so hot lately, I welcome the clouds and the early start time.

Say hi to a few friends and then cram in the start area behind the 1:50 pacer (Sabrina).  My PR  (1:38) was here in 2011, but this year I doubt my speed.  Chelan was 1:52 and I should be better than that, but some runs have been so sluggish.  I will be happy with a feeling good sub 1:50.  Halfhearted half mile warm up.

Start - Crowded but smooth, a few minutes later than scheduled.  Turn off the runway and the short out and back on the road.  Going to be crowded for a while but I will be patient.  Run with Rickie for a bit, have not seen her in ages.  The 1:50 pacers are getting a little ahead and I am still crowded in, so as soon as the road opens I make a move to get ahead of them.

Mile 2 - I had planned to stay with the pacers until the halfway point, but the pack was so tight, I went ahead of them and now have been gradually gaining on them.  I don't want to look back, but I also don't want to get too far ahead.  About an 8:15 pace and it feels comfortable.

Mile 5 - Over the Narrows and up the big hill.  8:21 pace but its not so hard to get up the hill.

Mile 6 - Judy Fisher sighting.  Around the neighborhood and the overall pace is back to 8:15.

Mile 8 - 8:12 overall pace and still feeling comfortable.  A few fat rain drops.  Then warm sun.  Into Cheney stadium and around the warning track.  Just as I leave the stadium, Pacer Sabrina enters, so I know how far ahead I am.

Mile 10 - Start to get a little tired.  That long straight ugly slightly uphill section along Highway 16.  Looking forward to the downhill.  I have not been running with anyone, just doing my own thing.  But now I catch a guy and we grunt a little to each other.  He he gets ahead of me and I catch another runner.  Don't say anything, just run next to her for a bit.  Then run with another guy.  It is nice to pace with someone, we are all just trying to hold on and not slow down.  Really can not wait for the downhills.

Mile 11.5 - The steep downhill is too steep.  With a young guy who is running his first half marathon.  I encourage him, we have a great finish coming up.

Mile 12 - Now the final mile to the end.  Nice gradual downhill.  Happy that everything feels good.  No pains or worry spots.  I will make my time goals, but I still think that I should be faster.  I gave it  a good effort and will get a slight negative split.

Finish Mile 13.1 - 13.19 on the GPS.  Heavy finishers medal.  Great post race gathering area with plenty of food and drink.  I like the live music.  Cheer on the runners and watch Jody finish.  We have to wait a long time for the bus back to the start but it is nice to chat with fellow runners and we make it home before noon.

136th of 790
Race #333, Half Marathon#30, Tacoma Narrows half#4

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