Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Wisconsin Half Marathon Recap

Top of the morning to you lovelies.

So, last Saturday a bunch of us runners had big plans to run the Wisconsin Half Marathon, billed as "The Cheesiest Marathon".  We ran it last year, and had a freaking blast.

This year, I didn't feel super well trained going in.  In fact, I had such small expectations that I didn't even right the requisite pre-race blog post can I/can't I/goals A-Z post.  The horror.

On the 2.5 hour drive to Kenosha on the day before the race, I was feeling anxious.  Super anxious to be away from home, to not be working, to do this great thing I had so looked forward to for months.  Nine runner buds were all meeting and staying in a hotel together, and I couldn't get out of my own damn head enough to appreciate the days ahead.

Eventually, with the help of a Sea Dog and a walk in a driving rainstorm along a glorious and violently crashing Lake Michigan, I finally felt ready to enjoy the weekend. 

After an early night, we woke up on Saturday morning to picturesque running conditions.  Fifty degrees, barely a breeze, and a glorious lakefront course.  Splendid.

As we lined up at the start, I knew I could PR (1:55:30, an 8:48 pace), but I was hoping to just squeak by with miles in the 8:30s or 8:40s.

Mile 1-3 - 8:27, 8:10, 8:05
Rough, rough, rough.  I wasn't looking at my Garmin, so I didn't know my pace was a bit ahead of where I wanted to be, but these miles felt slllloooowww.  I felt like it was a damn eternity between mile markers, and I even convinced myself I had missed the mile two marker.... until I saw it five minutes later.  Ugh.

Miles 4-6 7:58, 7:46,7:57
I ate a little something something (Black Cherry Shotblok, just one) at 3.5 because I was dying for something to make this shitty race feel easier.  I popped in my headphones, jammed out to a little Rage Against the Machine, and miraculously, my pace increased and my effort level decreased.  A lot.  All praise be to sugar and rap metal. 

I glanced at my Garmin just once I think during these miles, saw a 7:20 real-time pace, and decided that was the end of my Garmin looking, because that shit was terrifying.  That's my 5k, verge-of-hurling, gaspy pace.  But it felt OK.  I was going to run by feel, and that was that.

I remember running up a little incline, feeling strong, feeling awesome, when I made the decision to follow Plan Fuck-The-Garmin, and I thought, "This is going to make an interesting blog post." I wasn't sure if I would blow up in a mile or PR like a madman, but sometimes bad decisions make good stories.... which also happens to be my personal motto.  When I'm drunk.

Miles 7-13 7:47, 7:46, 7:43, 7:53, 7:44, 7:46, 7:55
I won't even make this suspenseful guys.  My pace was ridiculously fast for me, and it was strong and steady.  It was a great, great race.

I finished with a 1:44:09.  And that feels crazy.

Wisconsin Half Marathon
*** 1:44:09***
7:57 pace
Overall: 245/2272
Div: 9/217
Sex: 52/1402


Post-race, we enjoyed brats, and beer, cheering in my super awesome runner buds, and general silliness at a brewery and then a craft beer bar. 
Sub 2s all around.

Sarah, Lish, Kathy, Rachel, me, Matt, Joan, Amy

Our love is majestic.  And a little creepy.

So proud of my mom... half marathon #3!!!

Something that I did completely differently for this race was fueling.  Normally, I'll take three shot bloks over a five or so minute period at about 4 miles, 8 miles, and maaayyybe 10.5-11 if I'm dying. 

On Saturday, I took one ShotBlok (1/3 serving) at 3.5ish... and then I kept eating.  I pretty much popped one in my mouth each and every time I felt a big laggy.  I went through six, so I'm guessing I took one every 10-15 minutes, and it was awesome

Have you ever screwed around with your fueling strategy?  How'd that work out for you?


  1. Holy crap nice PR!!! That is awesome especially since you weren't feeling up to par. Gotta love races like that.

    1. Thanks Kiley! Suprise PRs are the best. :)

  2. Wow!!! Holy freaking FAST!! Congrats on an awesome race!

  3. How shit that's awesome!!!!!!!!

    Now you need to go KILL a 5k.

    1. I think so too.. I have all of these crazy numbers floating around in my head.. if only 5ks didn't hurt SO BAD I'd stop being such a pussy.

  4. Good grief that's a big PR! Nice job on the race. I'm planning on trying that same fuel strategy this weekend.

    1. I LOVED it because it felt like I was really listening to my bod, and I never had any serious lows. Also, I felt like I just got to sit down at a buffet for two hours, so that was pretty sweet too.

  5. I'm so, so PROUD OF YOU! 11 minute PR? Who does that???

    1. Uhhh.. you. In your first ten million half marathons. And in your second marathon.... ;)

    2. False. I've never taken 11 minutes off my 1/2 PR. 10 was the most. So there.

      (That first one after Oshkosh '08 doesn't count...)

  6. OMG, what an amazing time!! You are so freakin' fast!! Congrats on a well run race.

    1. Thanks.. we missed seeing you there this year!!

  7. Oh, and I love your Garmin plan! ;)

  8. I am so surprised to hear you felt blah in the beginning because when you passed me you looked SO STRONG! That must have been post chomp. What a good fueling idea. AND DAYUM! Congrats! I had this great feeling when you passed me and when I saw you cheering us in (thanks)! That is an AWESOME pace! You rock!

    And congrats to your mom, too! :)

    1. Oh, thanks so much Kim. When I saw you, I was so excited, and I couldn't believe how much you were chatting and smiling for the fast-ass pace we were running. You seemed like you were taking a leisurely stroll, and I felt like I was going to die. :) You had an awesome race and it was so nice to see you!!


Hearing from you makes me happy! :)

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