Sunday, September 16, 2007

Crossroads Half Marathon Race Report

September 16th saw the 2007 running of the Crossroads Half Marathon. This is a charity run. Crossroads is an organization that offers assistance to victims of domestic violence. Hard to think of a better way to spend a Sunday morning than by raising money for this worthy cause.

The start was scheduled for 8 am and when I left the house at 7 it was already 67 degrees. The scheduled high for the day was 88 degrees. This was going to be a hot run. Hooray!

My goals for this race was to PR with anything less than 2.05:59. It is a pretty flat run but my PR came from a mostly downhill race so I had my work cut out for me. I also had been slacking on my training program.

The start was pretty subdued with the race organizer standing at the front and when the time came he said "Go!". I was near the front, in a pack of 500 runners, and only knew we were starting because the front of the group was off and running. The start was downhill and I was feeling really good. At the first mile I looked down at my trusty Garmin and was amazed to see a pace of 8.37! I knew I needed to slow down or I was in for a long day.

I backed of on the speed and set myself for a steady pace. The race course is a mix of residential streets and our local bike paths. The paths are my favorite place to run so this was familiar territory. Miles 2 through 7 were a good comfortable pace. That is if I was only going to run 7 miles. My average pace was now at 8.50. I just knew that I was going to pay for that pace at some point and really concentrated on slowing down some more.

The payment for that effort came at the 10 mile mark. I was entirely out of juice. The miles between 7 and 10 saw my average pace slowly creep past 9 minutes. And finally, I had to walk. I would walk a total of 4 times between miles 10 and 12. At 12 miles I promised myself that I could make that 1.1 miles all in one push. I lived up to that promise.

The last mile of the race follows a very beautiful tree lined residential area in downtown Fort Collins. This leads to the finish, which is in the same place as the start. I finished the race strong with a final time of 2.04:59. A new PR!

I am conflicted. I am excited about a new PR and am proud of that effort. I am also very disappointed in myself in how I ran the race. If I had shown a little more discipline in the early miles, I am convinced I would have run a better time.

So now after an earned shower, and an ice cold New Belgium Skinny Dip Beer, I have a date with my easy chair and a day of football. Go Broncos!!

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Where in the world is...?

I offer no acceptable reasons for my absence, but do ask for forgiveness. Like most of my friends out there my training has been pretty miserable. My summer has been packed and has left little time for my running. I have managed to get some training in and with my half marathon only a week away I am marginally prepared. But, the cooler weather has arrived and the running is getting better. I have an alternate plan for this winter and will share that in a future blog.

I just arrived home from a weekend in Breckenridge Colorado. The photos I offer this post are all from the area. This was a weekend for getting the ATVs out. For the sake of my friend Charles, we were on the Wise Mountain /Radical Hill Loop. This was a great ride that took us to 12,600 feet in elevation.

The wife and I enjoyed the wonderful views at the top of this fun ride. We had perfect weather with sunny skies and moderate temperatures. we shared the ride with our close friends and this will be our last camping trip for the summer.

There was a mishap however and the photos below show the aftermath.

This is a good news / bad news story. The good news is that the young man (21) who was riding this machine is fine and only suffered a slight bruise when he flipped the ATV into a creek. The bad news is this is my wife's ATV.

Until next time...