Sunday, May 30, 2010

The Madison Half Marathon Race Preview

First of all, a huge good luck!!! to Jamie from Running Diva Mom who is running the marathon this morning.  She has had some awesome workouts during her training including massive long runs on the treadmill, for which she earns my undying awe and admiration.  I cannot imagine training for a marathon in Madison from January - March, but she has done it successfully, and I think she's going to rock the race today.

I wish I had the same confidence for myself.  I just don't feel prepared.  I ran some but not a lot over vacation so I don't feel like I've done any great training in the last two weeks, but we did a lot of walking around so I don't have that "really energetic because I've been sitting around a lot" feeling either.

But I'm going to do it because I signed up for it, and- whatever the outcome- experience racing is always good.  The truth is that, objectively, I'm really not that unprepared.  I've done many runs at 12 miles or longer.  I've done tempo runs at race pace.  I've done speed workouts.  I ran 7miles of a 20k at my half marathon goal pace on a harder (I think from looking at the 1/2 marathon course map) and hotter (jeez, I hope) course.    So it's not like I'm not going to finish with a respectable (to me) time unless something crazy and unexpected happens.  I'm even psyching myself up to run in my sports bra if it's that warm.  No, I don't have MM abs (more like M&M abs, ha!), but I don't think I'll blind anyone just this one time.

So without further rambling, here are my 3 goals- from conservative to ambitious- for the race:

1. Enjoy it.  If all else fails.      

2. 1:50.  I plugged in 1:50 into the McMillan race calculator and it's pretty much dead on with what I've been running lately for all my runs and races.  I was even thinking about running with the 1:50 pace group and then maybe speeding up later if I felt good, but I dunno.  I don't want to limit myself.  Sometimes I do surprise myself in races, so I think I'm going to go with my original plan of lining up a little bit in front of the 1:50 group and see what happens.

3. 1:48.  8:15 seems to be the pace I settle into for tempo runs, and I ran the first 1/2 of the 20k at this pace.  It's ambitious, but I still feel like it's do-able.  Maybe if I hold out the promise of a Bluephies Electric Flamingo  or Pop Star Martini out as a reward for my accomplishment, I'll be motivated to hang on when the going gets tough.

I probably won't be able to give a proper recap of the race until later because we have family in town, but I'll try to stop by and let you know how it went.  Unless it was crap.  Then I'm invoking my right to remain silent.