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Freescale Half-marathon

I finished Freescale today! It was OMFG COLD! I couldn’t wear my amber sunglasses because ice kept forming on them and/or they’d fog over. All the bridges and sidewalks were covered in black ice. Sweat would seep through peoples’ fleece and then freeze, leaving them a crunchy frosty coating. I can not believe I spent three hours in that! Ha ha I showed my body it wouldn’t get to stay in my warm bed today.

I got up at 4:30, packed up my gear and left. My first preview of what was to come was when I took my first step out of my apartment and lost my footing on ice. The roads were glistening with ice, and city trucks had just started to roll out putting sand and gravel on the roads. The race was delayed thirty minutes for whatever reason; I hear it was something to do with parking. I hung out in the Freescale cafeteria (a nice place, by the way), stripped a mid-weight layer I didn’t think I needed and had cup of coffee to warm up.

The run was quite a slog. Once I got underway outside the Freescale campus I shedded my extra flannel pants because I could tell they were getting wet from warmup. Did I mention it was cold? I started off doing 20/1 at a really easy pace, then settled in to 10/1. By mile 5, I was running out of energy and decided to enact damage control to cross the finish line regardless of time. I was aiming to do 2:30 at Freescale, but that was before the cold front came in and layed the smack down.

I wore my MH softshell over my thinnest CoolMax base layer shirt and I’m disappointed at the result. During our last training run, it was fairly cool outside and I had worn a thicker shirt and the soft shell. It was okay, I got a bit hot and sweaty a few miles out. This time I decided since the temperature was 10 degrees colder I could get away with the shell by wearing a silk weight base layer. This had the effect of me going through cycles of feeling warm and wet and then cold and wet. My base layer was completely saturated and the water wasn’t going anywhere. However, when the wind kicked up, I didn’t feel it. Had I worn a couple of midweight Patagonia shirts, it probably would’ve kept me drier, but would probably be much colder in the wind. I considered wearing my TNF hard shell, which was lighter and had pit zips which probably would’ve solved the wet problem, however fits long (below my waistline) and I didn’t know how annoying it would be to run in.

Around mile 8 or 9 I started walking the majority of the miles. I was taking Gu and chugging the Powerade, but I guess most of my energy was going to keep me warm. Some cute blonde girl passed me, but I didn’t have the energy to pace her, that’s how bad it was. I tried to summon up everything I had and sprint the last quarter mile, but 100 feet out with the finish line in sight my body was screaming, “hey! where are you going! get back here!” and shut down on me. I forced myself to go on at whatever I could manage. Crossing the finish was a blur. I know I was approaching, but I don’t really remember crossing it. I’m really bummed I couldn’t do way better.

RunFast shows my chip time is 2:51, but I disagree. I calculated a nine minute difference between gun time and when I crossed the starting line because I was so far back in the field. While my gun time might really be 2:51, I think my chip time was really around 2:42-2:43 or so. Mad props to the 5:00+ pace groups that marched on toward the finish of the full marathon. There were still quite a group of them splitting off when I diverted to the half-marathon finish.

I trained six months for this, now it’s over. I would say with the disappointment of Freescale, it went out with a fizzle instead of a bang. But I know those six months have just brought me to the beginning. What’s next? I /really/ need to start working on swimming if I’m going to attempt CapTexTri. At the very least I want to train for a full marathon this summer and get back on the bike to put in some distance.

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