Our first official half marathon… Without anything else before it

So this weekend we did our first official half marathon. The Cowtown in Fort Worth. We say official because even though is not the first time doing the distance its the first time we do it as a stand alone. Our previous time was we did it was after getting off the bike and riding 56 miles during our first Half Ironman. So we were looking at it a bit differently.

We had been adding up a lot of miles during our Ironman training, so we weren’t worried about the distance (to some extend) we did a long run last Saturday and we put 11 miles in, felt pretty good and also gave us the confidence boost we needed for a 2:00 or even a sub 2:00 half marathon.

We started our weekend by going to the expo to pickup Puli’s package as he for some reason wasn’t included in our team’s roster (more like a user error). Saturday was pretty busy, not much training on our schedules (a 20 minute recovery run) so took advantage of it and did a bit of catchup with things at home.

Bib numbers and race belts ready

Sunday started at 5:15, woke up to get ready eat some light breakfast and bundled up, it was a cold morning at 37-deg so we knew it was going to be cold. Some our teammates were coming over to the house at 5:45 so we could carpool and avoid taking 3 cars with the typical race day traffic, probably the best idea.

We got to the start, met with the coach, stretched, warmed up which was more like trying to stay warm overall and headed to the corrals. We all started together. Saw each other for the last time crossing the start mat and Puli took off.

From Puli’s report:
The start was crowded, passed a lot of people and pushed a lot more at miles 1 and 2 than I wanted and was actually negative splitting which was something I didn’t want to do. That was when I told B (girl from the team running with me) that we shouldn’t be trying to negative split or keep up with her sister, so by mile 3 we had found a nice 8:26 pace which we were able to keep for a while. By mile 6 which is by the Stockyards we checked and I knew then we were possibly going to hit our sub 2:00 goal, she had a 2:00 I had a 1:50. After the stockyards we knew that was the turn into Downtown on Main St, driving through that almost every day I knew what were up against and it wasn’t pretty. Seeing the Court House from the distance made us keep our easy pace so we could attack the bridge. When we got to it we just said “here we go let’s get it over with” and we got at it. Thinking all the hill repeats we have done over the last few months were paying off, but at the top of the hill it was when the legs were starting to feel the miles. Saw J (another teammate volunteering at mile 9 aid station) and he yelled at us to let us know how far it was, we emptied what we had left in our bottles and refilled at that one. Cruising through Downtown was fun, considering I walk it almost every day running through it was different. It was also a bit colder as the buildings were keeping the sun and the wind was tunneling In between them. We saw a few people. Actually “run” into a friend doing the ultra so we chatted for a few blocks and then we came to the split (half to the right and the full and ultras to the left) we made our turn and headed on Lancaster back on the home stretch. By then I had told B we only had 5k to go and our time was still pretty good, however my legs were starting to feel it. I slowed down a bit and just ran behind B for a while, by mile 12 we were side by side again, by 12.5 or so B started to get further ahead because I was slowing down, I was at 8:35’/mi then, still a good pace but that was all my legs had in them, I saw her make the turn into the finish line and then I came along, finish time 1:52 @ 8:34’/mi avg. not a bad effort for the first stand alone half. Got my finishers medal a bottle of water and then went back to the finish line to wait for Res, saw K come in and she told me Res was right behind her, so I spotted her pink hat and I knew she was home.

You can see Res and her pink hat
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