After the 4th snow storm in the last 5 weeks, we were ready for some sunshine. Too bad the entire 3 days we were in Phoenix there was no sun. It did rain on Saturday but we were just happy it wasn’t snowing!
We did our annual see all the friends and eat at all of my favorite restaurants while we were there weekend + a 13.1 mile run.
This race was much different than all the years in the past. I am heart rate training now so all my running has been slow. Slow!! If you have never tried heart rate training, it is definitely different. Since I started with my new coach December 1, there was no way to start the heart rate training and still run fast for this race. I was absolutely ok with that.
Here were the instructions from coach:
First 3 miles—Easy; hold back
7 miles— Tempo; moderately paced
last 5K— I could go as fast as I wanted
My only real goal was to negative split. (I was pretty sure if I followed Liz’s instructions I would.)
I didn’t have to look at my heart rate! Which was nice but it is usually a nice guide.
My friend Abbey, dropped us about 1/2 mile from the start. We did a short walk, a short warm up run, and got in the corral about 10 minutes before go time!
Dan and I started together and neither of us was real sure what was going to happen. He hadn’t been training much and I haven’t been running fast very much. We started out “easy” very conversation pace. We bought some new wireless headphones at the expo. We tried them out on our shake out run on Saturday and we both had problems. I wasn’t going to risk it. He thought he had figured out the problem. But they still didn’t work and he put his way. I put mine away too and we chatted.
We got to the 5k mark. I’m pretty sure slower than in any 1/2 I’ve done the last 4-5 years. Which was fine. I wanted to make sure I would be able to speed up the last 5k.
We kept running and kept chatting. We sped up a bit. Still feeling good. At mile 7, Dan peeled off to use the portie potty. I told him to catch up. I would at least see him on the hill between mile 9 and 10. I put my headphones back on and kept on trucking. I of course felt like I was going much faster than I actually was! I know I had dropped the pace a bit more. I did check my heart rate at about 8 just to see where I was.
I got to the turn around point and saw Dan not too far behind me. By the time we got to the bottom of the hill he had caught back up to me. He asked if I was going to speed up and I didn’t think I could. I sped up coming down the hill so there was no way I was actually going to speed up more than that.
I still felt relatively good. I knew if I wanted to sustain the pace: 9:45ish it was going to be a hard last 3.1 miles. I thought I would just see what happens. Dan left me at about mile 11 to see what he had left. I kept up my pace and finished strong. He beat me by 2 minutes.
Dan is keeping the Fastest Pancake Award. I thought I might have a chance but he was able to sustain the pace. (To think he didn’t even want to do the half but really only did it to get his puzzle piece. (I explain later)
I finished in 2:13:59. Slow. But it was good. I negative split and definitely left everything out there! I had fun. I ran with Dan way more than I thought I would. It was a very progressive run. I averaged 10:40s for the first 5K. 10:14s for the middle 7. 9:48s for the last 5K. I feel like it was a very successful run!! I have confidence that the heart rate training is going to work and my runs are just going to get better and better!!
We got our 3rd puzzle piece for our 4 medal series. I had understood that for 4 years we were going to get 4 medals that were eventually going to fit together. We got our first 2 (’15, ’16) and then this year everyone got the regular medal and if you had run ’15/’16 we would get the third puzzle piece. The same will go for the 4th next year. I don’t think that was the intention when they set this up 2 years ago but who knows. People like medals.
My after race treat: Baked Bear I had a cookie/brownie combo ice cream sandwich. It was well worth it! They make the ice cream sandwich and then put it in a fancy cookie warmer where the ice cream doesn’t melt. AMAZING!!
Another awesome trip! A great start to the year!! Until next year!!!