Sunday, August 15, 2010

9 Races Down, 1 to Go!

The Bronx Half Marathon

The adventure that was this race was not so much the race itself, but GETTING to the race! There is no parking in the Bronx. None. I ended up parking 1.5 miles from the start and began a long hike, all the while needing the bathroom very, very badly, but all the stores were closed because it was 6:00 AM!

While hiking, I suddenly hear my name being called! It's a friend from the neighborhood, heading towards the race. I hop in the car and he gets me to the start, and by now, the need for the facilities is an emergency. I get in the porta-potty line, but it's 25 deep, and I'm not going to make it.

I always have TP with me, and I start looking for cracks in fences around the rail yards, hoping for some luck. Then I spot an apartment building, run over, and beg the doorman to let me use a bathroom. He obliges. Pshew!

Now the race:

My goal for the day was 2:10, or 10:00 per mile. Anything less would be unacceptable. Anything better would be gravy. If I was doing well, my goal would be 2:03:50, or 9:30 per mile. If I was doing really, really well I'd hope for 2:00, and if I was doing really, really REALLY well, I'd gun for 1:57, or 9:00 per mile.

Miles 1-7 I rotated between 8:10s, 8:30s and 8:50s, depending on the duration of the looooooooong uphills and my waterstop breaks.

Miles 8-13 I all kept under 9:47. At mile 9, I looked at the clock and thought to myself, "Hey, I could take a nap on the asphalt right now and still come in WAY under 2:10! I gotta MAKE something of this!" So despite an uphill, I ran mile 10 25 seconds faster than mile 9.

At mile 13 I spotted Mariska Hargitay on the sidelines (Detective Benson on L&O:SVU), which was interesting.

Then the music started and the cheering got going and my legs picked up (And I thought "Where you all been till now? It's lonely out there!") and I vroomed over the finish line at 1:58:17, 9:02 per mile. My fastest 1/2 marathon in 3 years. I did the first half in 57 minutes, the second half in 61 minutes. No blisters or physical fatigue. I am becoming the machine I want to be. I'm in good shape, and am going to have a great marathon in November.

P.S. I'm now over 200 miles for the year.


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