Race Recap: Surf City Half Marathon

So this is another late (but only by a month!) race recap. Also, I basically copied it from my Instagram post. I wish I could add some nuance or a fresh take to this recap, but I have to get to the gym before it’s too late. Anyway, if you don’t follow me on IG, then here’s the recap!

Is it possible to PR and reach a huge goal (go under 1:50) and STILL be disappointed? Cuz that’s what happened to me! I blame my parents. Ha. Anyway, it’s not a particularly hilly course, and I felt like I trained to run a low 1:48, so my time of 1:49:44 kinda annoyed me. Oh! And I finished 22/646 in my age group so not too shabby.

Surf City IG

* Miles 1-2.5 – I tried a slightly more aggressive warm-up to get my first wind out of the way. This seemed to work well because instead of feeling like I was dying to keep up with the 1:50 pace group in the first couple miles, I felt pretty comfortable and wished we were going faster.

* Miles 2.5-5 – This is the only real hilly part of the course. Most of my miles are done in a very flat area, but the past couple months I did a few hard hill sessions, and I got through this fairly comfortably.

* Miles 6-9 – If I had felt great at mile 5, then I was going to go for it and pass the pacer. I felt good, but I didn’t feel like I was being held back or anything, plus there were some other factors that had me make the decision to just hang with my pace group (see below).

* Miles 10-13.1 –After talking to a few other runners who’ve run Surf City, it’s a deceptively difficult course. One, it is packed, and unfortunately the course narrows at certain points, making it difficult to pass. I expended a bit of energy trying to look for openings in the crowd and bursting through to get past people. There were also jams at the water stops, and for the first time I actually yelled at a volunteer (I feel terrible! But she was so hesitant and moving the gel from one side to the next, I finally yelled “Here!” I made sure to smile and thank the rest.). The other factor is the heat. Every year the weather is almost always hot, and it’s a late start (7:45 am). As you can see from the photo, which was taken on the back stretch, the last 4.5 miles consists of changing elevation on black top run directly into the sun. I’m guessing these factors contributed to me not being able to floor it and finish stronger.

Surf City 2018

One awesome thing that happened is that I didn’t carmp until mile 12! No matter how many salt sticks I gobble, I always crap at about mile 10, but this time my calves held on until mile 12. Plus it was nothing that a slight change in my running form couldn’t manage. I credit the nuun electrolytes that I’ve been faithfully taking the past year. Specifically, it’s the nuun Vitamins, and I just put one tablet in my water daily and it takes care of all my electrolyte needs.

This race turned out to be the most evenly run half marathon I’ve ever done! I had one faster mile and three slower miles — and even these weren’t huge swings — but every other mile was pretty much within 5 seconds of my final average race pace.

Am positive I have a faster half in me, and I can’t wait to take on Mountains2Beach at the end of May. But first…Boston!

Official Time: 1:49:44
Pace: 8:22
Age Group (50-54): 22/648
Women: 268/5863
Overall: 937/9970

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