Wednesday, March 18, 2015
when i signed up for this edition of the nyc half marathon, i expected to make a run at doing all five races in the 5 borough challenge again (going for 3 straight years). but, instead, the week registration for the brooklyn half was set to open i learned that i'd be traveling that week - argh. so much for the 5 boroughs this year. it's not that i don't love running the nyc half, but my primary reason was jettisoned the minute i realized i couldn't run brooklyn in may.
getting back to the nyc half, the weather was 20+ degrees on race morning this year! last year i actually ran the race with my windbreaker on - something i rarely do (and didn't regret running with it for one second). with the temperature hovering in the low 40's it was practically balmy waiting in the corral. in a corral first, i took the time to download the nyc half app - mostly to check out the course map. but the added bonus was adding my bib number for tracking - and, presto, just after crossing the finish had my race splits in hand! but i get ahead of myself.
it was a very crowded start. it took me 2:25 just to reach the start mat (not much longer than the 2 minutes it took last year, but it seemed a lot longer). like last year i had forgotten to grab a gu out of my bag when i dropped it off. rather than a random act of kindness when someone simply handed me a gu last year, i managed to find a gu when the corrals collapsed and we moved forward. that one, plus the gu i had as we crossed 42nd street would be the only things i had during the race (except for water).
my game plan for the race was to run sub-8 minute miles - and bring it in under 1:45 overall. my first mile, 8:13, was my slowest of the half. mile eight came in at 8:24, but i stopped to look for a gu with caffeine at the table. the fastest was the 7:34 i ran for mile two! the rest of the miles were clustered just under/over 8 minutes - pretty consistent, actually. the highlight was running the last 5k faster than the first one, just barely (24:23 v. 24:40)! when i reached 10 miles in 1:20:33, an 8:03 pace, i picked up the pace and managed to save a couple of seconds off the overall result - and brought the pace down to 8:01 - just missing my target.
i did manage to squeak in under 1:45 - that made me smile, actually. still, it was 4 seconds slower than the 7:57 pace i ran at the boston blowout 25k two weeks earlier - and a solid 8 seconds a mile slower than the colchester half the day before. not sure why i ran this one slower. maybe it was the drop off in mileage over the last couple of weeks? the lower mileage wasn't a result of injury, i was just tired of day after day of piling on clothes to run in the frigid weather. now that it's gotten warmer (relatively speaking), the mileage will climb back to normal.
the only downside of the entire day was not running into a single familiar face: before, during, or after the race! i knew - and looked out for - a lot of people who were running, but i didn't see any of them out there. i think the only time i spoke out loud was to ask the finish line volunteer if she would talk my picture (which she did)!
here's the screen shot of the splits from the nyc half app:
here are my race photos.