Sunday, October 14, 2007

Denver Half-Marathon Race Report

Where to begin. The forecast wasn't looking to great for several days before the race. It was predicted to be in the 40s or 50s with a good chance of rain. The forecast was predicted correctly today.

I woke up just a little after 5am. I was up and ready to run. I ate by usual bowl of oatmeal with too much sugar. I got dressed and off to the race. Nicole came with me too.

I was going to park at the Tivoli (Metro State College) center, but all the booths were blocked off. I decided to find a closer parking spot. Nicole and I drove to 16th Street and Glenarm. We were close to the start. This really made my day. We were parked and sitting in our car for at least 1/2 hour. If it wasn't raining and cold we would have gotten out much sooner. We left our car about 7:15am. The race started at 8am.

The lines to the restroom wasn't bad, so I jumped in line. The line was huge when I got out. That was pretty odd.

Stretching was hard because the ground was soaked. I did some dynamic stretches and did the best I could. I am glad we had an umbrella with us. It kept Nicole and I dry for a while. I left to the starting line too late. There were so many people and I didn't want to get setup with the wrong "pace group", so I decided to hop the fence line many others did. I am glad that it was very sturdy!!

I lined up in the 3:30 marathon pace group. I knew that I was likely to pass most of them, but I didn't want to start too fast. I am known for doing that. The race started and off I went. I was shocked to see so many fans. There were mobs of people screaming, cheering, shaking the cow bells, and clapping. It was such an awesome feeling. I was smiling for miles!

Mile by mile flew by. I starting running with a fellow RMRR runner. We chatted a little bit about last weeks race and how windy it was. The Pepsi Center came up rather quickly. Too quickly because Coors field was next. One of the runners screamed: "Let's go Rockies". He did this again a few seconds later and I cheered with him.
Mile 4-5 was awesome because we were nearly back to where we started. Nicole was waiting as I came by. She was happy to see me and I blew her a kiss and wave the peace sign. It was awesome!!! I forgot to hit my stop watch at mile 5. Mile 6 the runners ran around the park. I remember being at the park, but never running.

I passed a few runners, one of the was wearing a New York Marathon jacket. I talked with them briefly and kept running. I was handed a gel at the next aid station. It was an Apple Pie Cliff Shot Gel. I finally got it opened and tried to eat it. That gel was extremely thick and I could not eat it. I finally pulled out my own gel in just enough time before the aid station. The New York Marathon Jacket girl (NYMJG) and gang pass me just briefly.

I kept of up with the gang very nicely. They really took off and I thought they were gone forever. I caught back up and stuck with them for the rest of the race. We were at a turn-around point and saw many runners. I was looking for Tea, Deb Collins, Dave Rothensburger, and a few others. I did not see a single person. Darn.

I kept forgetting to push my watch button for miles 6-12. I was sad, but I was happy that I still had the overall time. I kept a cheat sheet with me to keep my at an ideal pace. It was a wrist band that never stuck to my wrist. I held it with my frozen fingers the entire race.

The end of the race was nearing and it was almost all downhill. NYMJG and gang were getting close to passing another girl. NYMJG said that she was in the top 5 for women. I was impressed and we tried extremely hard to catch the girl in front. We missed her by about 9 seconds. NYMJG finished 4th overall and 1st in her age division. One of her gang members finished 1st in his age division too.

I had a great race too. One of my best races ever! Despite the rain, frozen fingers, wet feet, and everything else, I finished with a total time of 1:29:21.

Here is the rest of my stats:
Bib #5534
Overall Rank: 55 of 3227
Class Rank( M25-29): 11 of 175
Sex Rank: 51 of3227

Pace: 00:06:49

I placed 11th in my age division. I was actually trying for 10th. I missed it by about 15 seconds. I was happy, but a little sad too. Best ranking of a race ever!! Now I just need this performance done during a half-ironman race and I will improve my time.

I finished the race and was cold. I got a massage and was still cold. Walked around...cold. We took off pretty shortly thereafter. I wanted to stick around for others to finish, but it was just not the day. Nicole and I went to Starbucks as our treat for the day. The coffee...that we didn't spill...warmed us up. Nicole drove us home and nap time it was.

God was really looking out for me today. I didn't get sick, injured or anything else. I plan on being sore tomorrow and will take the day off. This has been such an amazing journey and I am very fortunate to have such an awesome wife to share my stories with! Thanks Nicole.


Tea said...

What a fantastic race!
For the most part, I was hiding out under the trees. I also figured that you were lined up in the front. (I was back with the 5:00 group).

I agree with the frozen fingers and toes. I was shaking all the way home.

I just knew you were going to have an amazing race. Coming in 11th is just AMAZING! (I bet Nicole liked the fact that she could sit in the car and wait for you).

Congrats! That is SO great.

Brent Buckner said...


Well executed and SMOKIN' FAST!

The Scott Family said...

fantastic time !!!

well done

ShirleyPerly said...

Congrats on an awesome race!!

I wish there was a way to predict what one's 1/2-mary time in a 1/2 IM should be based on a standalone 1/2-mary but it seems there are just so many variables ... Got to just keep tri-ing, I guess!

Duane said...

Congrats Eric!