I met my friend Mark at the start of the HTC Huntsville Half Marathon at about 6:45 this AM. The training schedule called for 20 miles, so Mark and I ran 6 miles together before the race start at about an 8:10 pace. We finished just about 10 minutes before the race start. The goal that I had set for this race was 1:40. I crossed the line at about 1:40:12. I'll link to the official results when they're available.
What a great turnout for today's race! There were over 1000 entries for the half and the 5k combined. I didn't get to visit as much as I normally do before and after the race. Before, I was busy getting in my 6. After, I was completely toast! I tried visiting, but I just couldn't make myself be friendly. I could only think about how bad I hurt!! I've never felt as bad after any run or race as I did today at the end of the race.
I didn't set the Garmin up to auto-lap, so I don't have mile splits. But I held around 7:25 to 7:35 for the first 10 and about 7:55-8:05 for the last 2.5, and all I had for the last 0.6. Mark was my pacer, and I had told him that he should leave me behind if he has something left. For the last 5k or so, he took off. One day I'll catch him if he slows down. Nice run today, buddy. I enjoyed the 17 mile visit.
During the first mile, Glen King and Whitney Hollingsworth passed me. For the rest of the race, all I saw was Glen's back. He was REALLY running strong today. Nice race, Glen! Congrats on shattering your PR by 4 minutes. I was able to pass Whitney somewhere past mile 11, but Glen was barely in sight then. I entertained the thought of trying to catch him, but my legs talked me out of it.
I'm relatively pleased with the finish. I was fading in the last 5k, but I was not getting passed. Only one runner passed me (well two others did as I stopped at the last aid station, but I easily tracked them back down) in the last 3.1, and I passed 5 or 6, maybe more.
That last quarter to half mile, I really gave it all I had, which was a mistake. There was nobody really in sight to try to pass, and I saw the clock pass 1:40, which disappointed me a little. I was in some pretty serious pain when I crossed the line.
Then, Mark and Glen joined me for a one mile jog so that I could get in my 20 for the day.