ZOOMA Women’s Half Marathon
Saturday I ran a Half Marathon in Annapolis without any premeditated training at all. It was, probably, the most glorious day of my life. Perfect weather and great companions balanced out the lackof training and preplanning.
After A10K ended I’ve been just sort of running for the love of the run. my posse shows up at our favorite Starbucks meet point, and then we run around the beautiful city of RVA as long as we feel like running at the pace we end up going. Sometimes there are even cartwheels. #Truestory.
I didn’t really do much pre-race planning. I didn’t even look at the course…
That is so not my M.O.
I didn’t examine the elevation chart to make a race plan that tweaked my average pace zone down to the second. Heck, I didn’t even think about what I was going to wear. I grabbed a “go to” outfit out of the laundry basket, and tossed it along with some random personal items in a bag on Friday night and called myself packed.
I drove through a Tornado Warning to get to the hotel where I would sleep before the race with two fellow bloggers, T from Racing with Babes, and Pace of Me. We had a giggly good time, as would be expected.
In the morning I did some quick math and thought, I can ~probably~ run a 1:52, and that’s what I set out to run. I figured if things were great I would aim to pick up 2 minutes in the last 6 miles and run a 1:50.
And probably because of that, I had a great race. I relaxed and settled into a nice little groove. I kept an eye on my watch now and then, but didn’t obsess over it. The weather was great, which was fine because I hadn’t planned for anything extreme. Or, anything for that matter.
Did I mention? I had no hand held, fuel strategy, or course knowledge.
My hydration strategy would be to grab a little water at each stop, but not worry about it. Well what I learned was that many of the water stops were on the up hill. So I would grab a few sips of water or cytomax, and walk for 10 steps while I drank it.
Not that it was that hot, but I had no fuel and was running 13.1 miles on ¾ of a banana. It worked. And it gave me a little break mentally.
Around mile 9ish I was cruising down a hill and spray painted on the road were the letters GBA.
I honestly looked around for people I knew. I’m sure they meant Gasline Baltimore Annapolis or something stupid like that, but it was a smile for me anyway.
At mile 10 I tipped a cup of water on my head. And a race volunteer responded by pouring a half gallon of water on my head! I laughed and enjoyed the cool breeze.
Around mile 11.8 I was tracking more toward a 1:53, and thought to myself, “When I pass the 12 mile marker, I’m going to just dig as deep as I can for the last mile. I can do anything for a mile.”
I finished strong. My splits were relatively even. The mile long climbs were slowish, the mile long descents were fastish.
I ran a 1:52:22
Which happens to be a 10 minute PR for me… and, no matter how you look at it, is pretty sweet.
And then after the race there was a transportation snafu, so I just chilled for a few hours with authors Sarah Bowen Shea and Dimity McDowell, played in the hangers with T, and met about 200 women I’ve wanted to meet for a long time.
And, by chilled I actually mean I was FREEZING. The air was cool, I was sweat and water soaked, and the breeze was whipping!
We covered the whole “it was a perfect day” thing, right?
~savor the run~