Race report: Run for the Rocks Half Marathon

Sept 22, 2013 — Hutchinson, KS

Run for the Rocks Half Marathon

Place: 20/351, 3rd in age group

Time: 1:36:38

My fourth Half Marathon. I was completely unprepared for this. Several reasons (okay, excuses) why I knew I would not do very well. I’ve been battling plantar fasciitis for six months, I had done zero speed work, I had just run my first Ultra Marathon 11 days earlier. Not a good recipe for success. With a 1:31:32 in this race last year, and a PR of 1:28:06 at Texarkana in February, I knew I’d be nowhere near those.

If you know me, you know I’m stubborn, and a little voice told me to go for it anyway. Through four miles, I was right where I wanted to be. Then, reality it. Slowed down each mile the rest of the way, and wound up trudging across the finish with a time of 1:36:38 — 5:06 slower than last year, 8:32 slower than my PR… I finished 20th overall out of 35; I was 13th out of 428 last year — not sure why there were 77 fewer runners this year. Weird.

Given the circumstances, I can’t be too disappointed. Granted, it’s slower than I wanted, but I knew that was coming. Besides, I got to see several people I know cross the finish line — many of them notched their own PR. I also got some awesome support from my girlfriend Kami, and her sister, Macey. It’s also a nice, local course which happens to be the only race longer than a 10K available at all here in Hutchinson. So, that’s nice.

I often pick my friend Mike’s brain about running, and I’m learning from him (I learn like I run — slowly). Like he said, the Half Marathon is a tough distance to PR if you’re not training for it. And I wasn’t. That Texarkana Half remains my best race to date, but right now, I’ll turn my sights to the KC Marathon on October 19.

I’ve run four marathons thus far. Since one was a trail race, I’ll keep that time (4:31) separate. As far as the others, I’ve improved on each — 4:57, 4:26, 4:12 … Here’s hoping I can finally break sub-4 in KC.

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