Sunday, August 16, 2009

Race Day - AFC Half Marathon 2009

Got my HALF MARATHON TRIPLE CROWN MEDAL and it looks pretty cool!

Now, as for my AFC half performance. Well, pretty abysmal, as I expected (see previous post):
Overall:2031 out of 7021 Finishers
Men: 1400 (almost double that of LJHM) out of 3257 finishers
M 25-29: 224 out of560

Finish: 1:58:00 Pace: 9:01
Tag Time:1:58:00
Gun Time:1:58:40

Before I go about describing the events that led to the above disaster, add "staying up all night on the night before the race" to the list of wrong-doings I had mentioned in my last blog post :)

Overall, I am not too disappointed, though. Over the last 4 months I went from, feeling confident about a sub 1:45 finish on this race (this confidence was right after LJHM) to all the way down to not being able to run all of it :). I don't really regret all the wrong-doings either, because I've learnt from a few of them... and the others? well.. they were to much fun, to not do :)

I'm too groggy to type out the full race report right now... so, it'll have to wait till I "robot walk" myself to a shower and some food ;-)

PS: Just realized that all my bib numbers have the numbers 3 and 4 in them.... will have to make some sense of that, as well.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Mental Run!

The AFC half is this Sunday and it's been a while since I updated anything here. Browsing over past posts almost makes me feel like the training I was doing for the first two halfs this year, was something out of a different life (and although, it didn't seem too disciplined or rigorous at the time, it sure as hell does seem so, now, considering my AFC training!):)

Well, this ones going to be nothing short of interesting. I've done everything wrong this time...

1. Ignored a tender tendon right before the La Jolla Half (Heck, I thought I had hit my foot on a lab bench) and ran the half like I couldn't care less (well, at least I didn't do too bad!).
2. Took a long break and went on vacation, right after the La Jolla Half, with no running and lot of junk food binging.
3. Returned and attempted long runs without a slow build up (worsening an already sore tendon)
4. Had to stay off running to avoid limping while not running... until I figured that changing my running style helped "disguise" the tendon issue... yeap... this lead to experiments with forefoot striking.
5. Experimented with forefoot striking with a bad tendon, except the experiments were anything but that (they were more like through and through 10 milers, while what I was supposed to do was intermittent forefoot runs within the main long run :)
6. Overcompensated for the Tendon and agitated the IT Band in the process (yeah, that arch enemy of mine made a comeback after 2 years).
7. (And, final nail in the coffin) - Went camping the very last weekend before the half (instead of running and checking out the course) and did one 7mi hike on Sat and a 10+ mi (3)peak bagging hike on Sunday... and got rewarded with a nice blister on the right leg (hey, I had to balance out the ITB and Tendon issues on the left leg, right?:P)

So, here we go... there's no way I'm bailing out of the AFC (There's that Triple Crown Resolution I made earlier this year, remember?)... so, yeah... this one's going to be a veeeery interesting race and a test of mental strength just as much as of physical (or maybe more?)

PS: Wish I had a half marathon version of the T-shirt that reads "Why couldn't Pheidippides have died at mile 20" :)