I ran on Saturday's (February 27, 2010) Cowtown Half Marathon. As usual I had all my gear inventoried the night before. I had plenty of rest on Thursday night (7 hours) and Friday night (5 hours). Thankfully this race was a local one and only 15 miles away. My running gear was the same except I added a hand held 10 oz. bottle filled with Gatorade and, for fuel I brought 2 packets of strawberry CLIF Shot Bloks electrolyte chews.
The drive to downtown Fort Worth was fine. I had arrived a little before 6:00 a.m. I had planned to park in the same place as last year, in the parking garage cattie corner from the Bass Performance Hall. It's within 2-3 blocks of the starting line and other race related stations. It looked like everyone had the same idea as it took more than 20 minutes to move a quarter of a mile to the parking garage. I parked in the 5th floor. After testing out the weather and since there was more than hour before the start of the race, I decided to dress warm. So I kept my windbreaker set, my gloves and knit cap on. I brought along a bag so that I could check in my windbreaker set.
After walking around and taking some pictures, I removed my wind breaker set stored them in my bag.
The Cowton's Half Marathon Finish line.
About 15 minutes before race start I checked in my bag.
I took my shok blocks and a chased it down with couple of drinks of water. I stretched and warmed up by running about 5 blocks down from the starting line and back. According to my bib I was assigned to start corral B. So I started looking for it. I found it just as the singing of the National Anthem began.
After a couple of minutes, the elite runners started from their "corral". Shortly after that corral B was let loose. As usual my muscles felt sluggish for the first 2-3 miles. I took a couple of sips from hand held bottle of Gatorade past the 3rd mile. It was nice to see youngsters out cheering the runners. Past mile marker 4 there were a couple of them begging the runners for "low five" as we went by. I was more than happy to oblige them.
In the middle of the running mile number 5 I hear my cell phone's GPS software sound the audible mile marker beep. I knew that it was too soon for that. It beeped several more times in a matter of 3-4 minutes. Past mile marker 6 I took off my gloves and threw them away in trash bin as I was passing the drink station. I also push the edges of my knitted cap above the top of my ears. I had finally started to warm up and feel the perspiration on my forehead. I took some more electrolytes, followed by several sips of Gatorade. The beeping from the phone's GPS continued until mile marker 8. So tracking my mile splits went out the window for those miles.
After mile marker 9 and several more sips of drink it seemed like the run was all mostly down hill. All under 8:00 minutes per mile. I avoided the brick street surface on Camp Bowie Blvd. by running mostly on the street's gutter concrete surface. That allowed me to keep a pretty fast pace through mile 10 and 11.
Halfway into mile 12, I saw a "mini" flash mob by the park, dressed as zombies and dancing to Michael Jackson's Thriller in the park, right before the 7th street bridge over Trinity Park trails. Over the bridge I noticed the trails where I had trained the majority of the latter half of last year. This was the first time that I have seen the trails from this vantage point. I had run in the Fort Worth's Runners Club Einstein 10K, the Mote in Motion Half Marathon, the Fort Worth Marathon and the Impossible Possibilities 5k races on these trails.
I take my last sip of Gatorade as continue into mile 13. I started feeling my legs getting heavier but I cruised in a little over a 9:00 minute mile pace through the finish line. My time for the 13.1 miles was 1 hour, 45 minutes and 23 seconds. I was just 9 seconds away from my PR. I improved by 4 minutes and 4 seconds from my second half of the year (Run the Line), and 5 minutes and 19 seconds improvement off of my first half of the year (Surfside Beach).
I cooled down around the finish line. There water plenty of water and volunteers. I took several pictures of the crowd and runners.
I cheered on the first male and female marathon runners to cross the finish line. I waited for Libby to cross the finish line so that I could take her finisher pictures. It was great to hear that she PR'd in this race by over 3 minutes. Congrats Libby!!
Chip Time: 01:45:23 (8:03/M)
10 miles (position, time and pace): 375 1:19:23 7:56/Mile
Last 3.1 (position, time and pace): 437 1:45:23 8:03/Mile
1. 7:02,83 7:02,83 1 mi 7:03 / mi
2. 7:31,77 14:34,62 1 mi 7:32 / mi
3. 7:50,43 22:25,5 1 mi 7:50 / mi - drink
4. 7:42,19 30:07,25 1 mi 7:42 / mi
5. 8:01,42 38:08,67 1 mi 8:01 / mi
6. 6:57,22 45:05,90 10 mi 0:42 / mi
??. 0:03,96 45:09,86 2 mi 0:02 / mi
??. 0:02,3 45:11,90 1 mi 0:02 / mi
??. 1:58,98 47:10,88 12 mi 0:10 / mi - drink and electrolites
??. 0:06,99 47:17,88 1 mi 0:07 / mi
??. 0:02,0 47:19,88 1 mi 0:02 / mi
??. 2:28,94 49:48,82 3 mi 0:50 / mi
??. 1:30,97 51:19,80 1 mi 1:31 / mi
8. 7:38,91 57:58,71 1 mi 7:39 / mi
9. 7:40,50 1:06:39,23 1 mi 7:41 / mi - drink
10. 7:52,81 1:14:32,3 1 mi 7:53 / mi
11. 7:32,5 1:22:04,9 1 mi 7:32 / mi
12. 8:10,93 1:30:15,2 1 mi 8:11 / mi - drink
13. 9:02,4 1:39:17,7 1 mi 9:02 / mi
14. 6:25,98 1:45:43,6 0.8 mi 7:53 / mi