TOU 1/2 today with a good blog crowd- Seth, Paul, Cody, Sasha, Walter, and others. My 1/2 marathon PR of 1:14:07 was set on this course last year. I was hoping to break 1:13, with a stretch goal of 1:12. I also was gunning for Sasha and wanted to prevent Paul from beating me, which was his goal. Last year I did a partial taper for this race, this year I had no taper- in fact, this week is my highest running mileage ever. Ever. So I was hoping that wouldn't affect me.
Warmed up 2 miles at home, then 2 miles at the starting line. I was all business today- no talking, joking around, etc. Even wore my race day warm up beanie despite the warm temperature. Felt a new tightness in my right achilles and tried to stretch it, but to no avail. It twinged a bit during the race and hurts after, but didn't slow me. It was 50-55 deg at the start, overcast, swirling winds (i.e. no great canyon wind to help today). Splits were as follows:
Mile 1- 5:34- too slow, wanted sub-5:30, but felt good. Seth and Taren are already ahead, Josh Steffan and Sasha are 10 seconds up, Paul and Walter are right behind me.
Mile 2- 5:28
Mile 3- 5:23- finally a good pace, though faster than my 10k pace a few weeks ago...
Mile 4- 5:25- feeling fast yet good, Paul dropped off a bit here
Mile 5- 5:17- Fast, fighting a bit of a side ache
Mile 6- 5:20 (10k split of about 33:20, just off PR pace)
Mile 7- 5:18- not much tail wind compared to last year. Bummer.
Mile 8- 5:30- out of the canyon, fewer hills, slight headwind
Mile 9- 5:32- Paul is still only 10-15 seconds back, Sasha is about 1 minute ahead. My 15k PR is 53:56, which I would have broken by about 3:30 today.
Mile 10- 5:29 (10 miles in 54:21)- semi-brisk headwind along this stretch
Mile 11- 5:38 (59:59 total time at this point)- Mile 10.5-12 is uphill, with 150' climb
Mile 12- 5:47- Sasha really coming back to me now, Paul isn't catching up
Mile 13- 5:23- pushed it real hard to the finish
0.1- 0:26- made up 30 seconds on Sasha, put about 15 seconds on Paul in the last 5k
Total time was 1:11:38 (1:11:40 official, though I think the official clock was 2 seconds slow by everyone's watch). 5:28 pace, 2:29 PR. This was about 1 minute faster than I realistically thought I could go, and the race was about 30 seconds slower than last year due to different winds. I am very excited. I was tired at the finish, but within about 2 minutes felt much better and could run at a normal pace again- much faster post race recovery than normal.
I'm happy with the race today. A few blisters, very tight achilles (I'll have to watch that), but feel great. This predicts a 2:28:14 St. George (and a 32:19 Des News 10k, and 1:09:30 on the new Hobblecreek, in case anyone was wondering for today's comparison). My St. George goal is to break 2:30, so this goes a long way to making me belive I have a shot at it. Sasha predicted 2:27:30 at SGM.
By the way, Clyde-science predicted 1:11-something, with him not even knowing the course. Maybe Clyde-science is the new Sasha-science.
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