September 4th: Woke up at 6:10am. Breakfast of one packet of instant oatmeal. Hit up the bathroom. Pounded Gatorade before heading out to Monadnock High School for the start of the Swanzey half marathon. It was already humid out at 7am. The race didn't start until 9am. Once we got there, I registered the $46 bucks (most I have ever paid for a race) and organized all my stuff back at the car. Saw George Adams and let him know when I was warming up. Chilled at the car until about 8:10-8:15am. Found Big George and we warmed up 2 miles. The last mile of the course in reverse, which was very beneficial for me. I wore a shirt for the warmup and it was real sweaty after just 15 minutes of running. I was deciding on whether to wear a jersey and the warmup confirmed I was going to be running for the Bare-chest club. Got back and switched up my socks, Vaselined up the arms and inner thighs, and jogged to the starting line about a 1/2 mile down the road. Fyffe was shooting for a course record so no point in trying to stick with him at all. I discussed my race strategy and goals with George the day before at the alumni race and Pete's BBQ. I wanted to go out conservatively and hit sub 6s the whole way. He said that would be easy, but the half marathon was a road test for the full marathon. Try to focus on staying relaxed and feeling out the right pace for the full. The race was executed real well. The first 4 miles was conservative at 5:52, 5:56, 5:52, and 5:47. At 4 miles, I started to pull away from George and was sitting in 4th place. I couldn't see 3rd at all. I don't know the rest of my splits because I wasn't wearing a watch so I only knew the first 4 because of George. I knew I was starting to pick up the pace and just held it for the next couple miles. At about mile 5.5-6, I caught 3rd place and cruised past him. I knew 2nd was this guy that went out after it from the gun (he knew he wasn't going to catch Fyffe, but 2nd was a possibility). I started reeling him in at about 8 miles and pulled up next to him for a bit. He let me know that he had blown up. I didn't have much to say and he tried hanging on for maybe a quarter mile. Dropped him. Tim Pipp ran with me from about mile 10 to 11. He was doing a long run so he peeled off after a little bit. I cruised in the last couple miles for a 2nd place finish and $50 bucks (covered the race fee and I got to walk away with +4 dollars, woohoo!). My shorts were completely drenched by the end. I grabbed some Gatorade and some orange slices. Headed over to talk with the guys after (Wilson, Ferenc, and Fyffe) and eventually followed down with George and Fyffe. We got going at a good clip and finished up to grab a burger at the refreshment table. Awards and out to The Brewery for lunch with Kimber. Spinach, mushroom, herb cheese, tomato, and sprouts on a bulkie roll. It hit the spot perfectly. Ginger ale for a drink to settle the uneasy stomach from the race. Stopped off at Titus' to say goodbye then the lake house to say bye to Sears. Got back to Kimber's apartment around 3:00 to relax for awhile. Kimber napped while I showered and watched tv. She woke up as a little cranky pants. We worked through her tiredness for about an hour and finally got her out the door at 6pm for a 6+ mile run. I met her at 3 miles with water and to get a status of how she was doing. She felt great and continued on the new route I mapped out for her. I continued another 3/4 of mile or so to encounter a beast of a dachshund. Not size-wise, but the fight in the dog. I was in a car and the miniature dog was preventing me from passing through the road. It was nonstop yapping at the car thinking that I was going to either turn around or surrender. I had no thought of giving up and planned to force this rodent back to where it belongs, it's yard (not the friggin in the middle road). It took about a solid 5 minutes to herd the animal (with my car) back it's property and yelling out to the owner to grab their dog. She was grateful I stopped, but she kept calling it's name with absolutely no reaction from the dog. She finally came out to the road and picked it up. Kimber would of not enjoyed that one bit. Drove back to the house and waited for Kimber to finish up. She cooled off, stretched and we hit up the grocery store for dinner grocery shopping. We picked up a steak, broccoli, potatoes, some stark rub and rolls. Returned to the apartment to prepare our late night dinner (about 9pm we ate). Everything went fairly smoothly. A little stressful (more for Kimber), but it worked. A couple hiccups was the steak dripping off the cutting board while we were allowing it to soak back up the juices (the cutting board did not have a trench surrounding it), the potatoes were not all cut to the same size (Kimber kindly mentioned that to me), and the broccoli was not properly drained from the steamer (there was water in the serving bowl cooking the broccoli). Overall, a successful meal and we were both starving. We inhaled our food and relaxed for the rest of the night.
Summary: 20 miles on the day and 70 miles for the week with a day off (12+ mile hike on Friday). 2 mile warmup (15:00), 1/2 marathon (74:19), and 5 mile cooldown (31:22). The first 4 miles being at 5:52 pace, I must of picked it up to about 5:35 pace for the last 9+ miles. I was stoked after figuring that out. Solid race and a fun half marathon debut. Wore my new Lunarfly 2 trainers that worked like a charm. 4 weeks until the marathon and feeling confident in my running ability.
Sorry for the delay. I will be caught up before my marathon on October 2nd. Been busy looking for jobs and working. I have a whole lot less time on my hands than I did in the beginning of the summer.