Another Hilly Half

Monday, May 12, 2014

Run my 4th Harpers Ferry Half Marathon this past weekend. I'll make this a short report because I've written about it before (see link at end). I won't repeat anything except to say it's a *very* hill course. Here's a pic comparing it to the HMs of Frederick and Baltimore - check out that red line:

This year, due to illness , I was only able to eat 800 calories the day before the race. Despite this, I had a good race - actually ran faster than last year finishing just a hair over 2 hours. This reinforces my belief that eating the day (and morning) before a race is one of the least significant aspects of race prep (if you've eaten properly during the rest of your taper).

One thing I did differently was to drink a LOT of water during the race. At the start, I listened to the RD warn about hyponatremia. So of course, I was a bit worried but it was hot (70F). I figure that people suffering from hyponatremia must really be overdoing it!

I also consumed gels on the course, something I haven't been too keen on in the past. Last year, I only had 1 gel. This year, I had a "Double Latte" at mile 6 and another at 11. I already knew that PowerBar gels taste horrible so I slammed them down as quickly as possible. Still not sure if it was the sugar or the caffeine but I finished strong.

Despite what I just said, I did take a brief walk break during a giant hill at 12 and another at 12.9 that's incredibly steep. It's a bit frustrating to walk so close to the end. But these hills are killer when you're so close to exhausted and I had walked them every year. In fairness, I must explain that *everyone* around me walked these same sections, too. I was not passed.

Also dumped a cup of water on my head and shirt. (Hope the aid station volunteers found that amusing.) Had never done that before but it was soooo hot.

My race report from last year:
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Late seeing this but I enjoyed reading it. I like the graph comparisons, that is pretty neat. I have been using Honey Stinger gels on the long runs and races and I don't use the amount they say to use either. I do feel that they help me though if I use them timed out right. I need water afterwards, they make my mouth too goopy and that I don't like.
    Thank you for inspiring! Happy running!
    1411 days ago
    That kind of elevation would make me turn and run the other way emoticon .

    Congratulations on an emoticon race!

    emoticon on pushing yourself to the limit.

    It is rewarding to beat your own time on the same course. emoticon
    1468 days ago
    Thanks for the stories! I remember shinnying down the Appalachian Trail down Weaverton Cliffs. If you didn't have black toenails by then, Weaverton would give them to you.

    Congratulations on your run.
    1469 days ago

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    1470 days ago
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