Hands On House 1/2 Marathon Report - 2007

I had to add the "2007" tag since I actually did this same race a year ago... Today, I ran it 13 pounds lighter and almost exactly 20 minutes faster, finishing in 1:34:32... the official time had me 4 seconds longer, but it wasn't a chip-start, only a chip finish. Official results are here. Too tired for a cohesive report, so here are random thoughts:

1) I was tapered for this, so it's probably a good indication of true fitness... I'd been working really hard, so I used most of this week as a recovery week, cancelling my two cross-training days, and not doing any speedwork. This gave me a very fresh race to guage my fitness for the upcoming Harrisburg marathon.

2) I came in 5th out of 35 in my age group and 28th out of 351 overall - definitely a nice surprise.

3) Though my splits were mostly on pace, the 11th mile was disappointing, a 7:59 buried in mostly 7-7:20's --- and that 7:59 wasn't too very uphill, either. Hopefully, I have more stamina than that.

4) I ran with my mp3 player and loved it. Definitely doing it for the marathon.

5) I got beat by an Amish guy, running in khaki pants, a button down shirt and sort-of-sneakers that will never be reviewed by Runner's World. I congratulated him. Very impressive and something you'll only see in Lancaster County.

6) A ton of people ran in this one that I knew - my neighbor Tony (1:44ish), co-workers Eric (1:54) and Nate (2:02), Eric's wife (1:47 (4th in her age group)), my daughter's teacher, Anita (2:00) , my daughter's friend's Mom, Lori (1:37 - first in her age group) and Dave - a fellow I know from the Lancaster Road Runners Club (1:57).

7) Does this mean I could qualify for Boston at the Harrisburg Marathon? Well, this course was harder than Harrisburg, but then again, my Garmin said it might've been a tiny bit short, too, but either way - I'm close: the VDOT calculator pins my prediction at a marathon of 3:16:54 and McMillan puts me at 3:19. The Running Ahead one puts me at 3:17:04 --- all of which means I'm too close not to go for it, so 3:15 is the official goal for Harrisburg. All of that being said, the marathon is still six weeks and two 20 milers away and the training has definitely given me some wear and tear... it's going to take a little bit more luck to get me to City Island uninjured.

8) And finally - because I'm a VDOT nerd, this was my highest VDOT performance to date, a 48.12. Not much higher than previously, but impressive that I pulled it off in a long race, which I hadn't come close to doing before.

As far as shaving 20 minutes in one year, it's cool, but I really had no business running the race last year on 3 months of training, and I'm going on the record saying that I won't shave 20 more minutes in 2008. :)

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