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<span>2/24/08 Five Points of Life Half Marathon, Gainesville, FL</span><br><br><span>After BQing last fall, I have slacked off quite a bit, only running about twice per week. Then last weekend, my wife suggested that I go do the HM with my friend next weekend. Well I signed up, ran 4 times totaling 22 miles (+13.5) for the week.</span><br><br><span>My initial goal was to run 8 minute miles. I told my training partner of my goals, he rolled his eyes, and he/I adjusted my goals to 7:45 miles (or about 1:41:30) Another goal of mine was to not let anyone pass me over the last half of the course and the easy way to do that is too start out really slow and sandbag, then put on the jets. So, I will go out easy, maybe a 8:15 pace for the first 2-3 miles, then pick it up from there. Oh, BTW, in training, the biggest hill that I run is about a 10 foot high hill where the railroad tracks intersect the street. Gainesville had a bunch of flat spots on it too, either the very top of a hill or the very bottom of a valley. Good times.</span><br><br><span>I knew that I was good through 10 miles, but I didn’t know what to expect out of myself over the last 5k. One of my sayings is that “Anyone can train for and run a good first 20 miles of a marathon, what makes your marathon is the last 10k.” that was kinda how I was feeling.</span><br><br><span>55 degrees, no wind, no sun (yet), 1200 people on the start line, 7:07 AM BANG!!!!</span><br><br><span>Mile #1</span><br><span>I stay relaxed, stay on the far right hand side of the street, out of the traffic, get to the first mile sign , 7:31. I asked a few people around me if they thought that the mile was off, they said “No”, I said “Oh Crap!”</span><br><br><span>Mile#2</span><br><span>Hanging out shooting the bull with one of the full marathon runners from Chicago, get to the next mile sign, 8:04. That’s better.</span><br><br><span>Mile #3</span><br><span>Going up hill now, feeling OK, nothing great. Mile #3 split 8:19. Um…this will not do, thankfully at 4 miles, the course starts going gently downhill</span><br><br><span>Mile #4</span><br><span>I feel pretty good now, the road isn’t too crowded, but there is a sea of people in front of me. I am sick of watching their backs, time to pick things up. 7:35. From here on out, nobody passed me the rest of the race, (at least until mile 12)</span><br><br><span>Mile #5,</span><br><span>Downhill with a big drop somewhere in the middle of the mile, letting gravity do its thing, I split a 7:08 and pass a bunch of people defying gravity, not letting the downhill be their friend.</span><br><br><span>Mile#6</span><br><span>I defy gravity again, picking up the intensity going up hill for most of the next mile, splitting a 7:31</span><br><br><span>Miles #7-9</span><br><span>My favorite part of the course, running through the old residential part of town and downtown, along curving roads, picking people off one at a time. Picking off people, except for “Delts.” Delts was wearing blue shirt and I was moving up on him over the last half mile or so. I nicknamed him Delts because (as I found out later) he is a triathlete and he had big shoulders (deltoids). I stuck on his heels from around the 7.5 mile point in the race, through the 9 mile sign. I didn’t see two of the mile markers, but mile 9 said 23:02 or an average of 7:40 miles</span><br><br><span>Miles 10-12</span><br><span>Still on Delts’ heels, with the sun beating down on our backs, Delts is leading the way as we continue to pick off runner after runner. At around the 10 mile point, he started pulling away for good and I would never catch him (except at the banana table after the race). At mile 11 we ran though the stadium, past the UF Cheerleaders. Were they cute? Well I assume so, but I had business to take care of, so as far as I know they could have looked like the ladies at my grandmother’s nursing home. I passing one person in the stadium, then back onto the street, down the road, past the idling range rover (cough, cough), through the aid station, two cups of water, one for the head and one in the mouth (first gulp went in the lungs, not so fun), around the corner and down the hill, blowing by a few people towards the 12 mile, splitting 22:01 or a 7:20. Still nobody has passed me since the 4 mile point.</span><br><br><span>Mile #13(.1)</span><br><span>Take a right hand turn, down a mainly flat, curving road with the lake on the left side, I am maintain my position. As I look at the spectators, they all are looking into the distance and as they cheer for me, I listen for them cheering for others, but I hear nothing. I think about taking a peek behind me, but I realized that whoever is behind me is yesterday’s lunch and today’s breakfast is still in front of me, so I don’t bother looking back, and just look for the next person in front of me. As I am about a quarter mile from the finish, it looks like everyone in front of me is pretty strong and over 50 yards in front of me and I keep pushing, but going nowhere, I round the last turn and hit the stop button at 1:38:55. My final split was 7:53 or a 7:13 pace+/-.</span><br><br><span><span style="color:#1F497D;">I was all over the map. I hope the hills had something to do with that. I took 7th place in my age group, missing out on 6th place by about 5 seconds. Since I started on the “marathon side” of the road, they didn’t subtract my net time for me, otherwise the official results would have said 1:38:55. I looked to see if my chip time would have made a difference and I would not have as the 47th place person beat me by about 4 seconds and I beat 49th place by over a minute and the 50th place person by over two minutes (weird to have such a big gap in the middle of the pack).</span></span><br><br><br><span><span style="color:#1F497D;">I met “Delts” after the race, introduced myself and told him my story that he was the only person who I tried to pass, but couldn’t. I then found out that his names is “James”. He said that he took the race out slowly as well. As he was leaving, I told him” it was great to meet you and next time we race, I am going to catch you.”</span></span><br><br><span><span style="color:#1F497D;">As I have said before, I love the half marathon course, while the second half of the marathon isn’t quite as interesting. It is a great race, well run, and small enough to not feel like you are wall to wall people, but big enough that you aren’t running alone (unless you are doing the marathon).</span></span><br><br><span><span style="color:#1F497D;">My next race will likely be a 10k at the end of march that I will actually train for.</span></span>
 

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Wow - Somehow I almost missed this post. Great job out there and great RR. some pretty solid running. Congratulations
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks David, It certainly wasn't my best, but it was definitely the best that I had for that day. I don't think I had another 15 seconds in me.
 

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Awesome race! Very impressive time. I'd like to see what that 10k time is going to be if you "Actually train for it" <img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif">
 

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Mutt, great job on this race...especially with not even training that much for it. I would have rolled my eyes too if you said "8 minute pace" beforehand to me. <img alt="biggrin.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/biggrin.gif"><br><br>
I know this because people are doing that to me now whenever I say I plan to run 8:00/mile (3:30) at the National Marathon. They're probably right too, even though it is supposed to be just my final tuneup before Boston. <img alt="blush.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/blush.gif"><br><br>
And way to throw down the gauntlet at "Delts!" <img alt="thumbsup.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/thumbsup.gif">
 

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You really "turned on the jets" like you said you would. Awesome job!<br><br>
But seriously, next time, check out the cheerleaders <img alt="smile.gif" src="http://files.kickrunners.com/smilies/smile.gif">
 
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