Sunday, May 6, 2012

Whiskey Row Half Marathon

Up to six weeks ago I was training for the Whiskey Row full marathon. I had three 20's accomplished with 2 of those being on hills.  I was feeling prepared coming up on the final stretch when at track I strained my left hamstring.  Over the past six weeks I had massages, ART and did lots of strengthening exercises.  I successfully ran 14 miles last weekend (jumping from 0 to 4-6 miles to 14 within two weeks is not recommended). The question still remained should I or shouldn't I run the full?

I pondered numerous things that I blogged about and on Tuesday realizing it was more important to have a positive experience than the bragging privilege of running a full.  And not only any full but the Whiskey Row full, one of the toughest, hilliest marathons.
Whiskey Row takes place in the pine trees up in Prescott, Arizona starting at elevation 5280 and goes up to about 6400.  Some of the local residents come out and one couple handed out bananas to the runners.

My goal for the Whiskey Row Half was to get to the finish line UNINJURED and to accomplish that I was going to walk the steep hills.  I implemented my first walking hill and felt awkward knowing I wasn't tired but it was more important to not strain the hamstring.  From miles 4-6 I felt like I was doing more walking than running.

Mile 1 was a nice, easy pace. It was fairly crowded and my 9:03 mile was a perfect pace.
Mile 2 had some mild hills and I was surprised with an 8:44
Mile 3 yep, starting the hills 9:38
Mile 4 more hills 9:42
Mile 5 dang with was steep11:01
Mile 6 and yet more hills 10:46
Mile 7 was the final uphill to the turn around point and then we started downhill 8:47
Mile 8 was all downhill and to have our friend Gerald be proud I ran this strong at 7:32. I want to give a shout out to Ari, who posted on my blog and I when I saw a lady with "Ari" on her shirt, I knew it was her.
Mile 9 I was still flying and wondering if I was pushing too hard for the middle of the race. After all, it is still work to run downhill and you can wear yourself out running downhill.  7:36
Mile 10 John caught the edge of a cone, turned his ankle and went down.  I stopped, helped him up and walked with him a bit.  HE SAID to go on and he'd walk it in.  I bring up the point HE SAID for me to go on because he's now complaining how I abandoned him injured in the race. 8:55
Mile 11 9:08
Mile 12 I stopped at the water station and told them about John and he may want help. 9:10
Mile 13 The final mile and I was tired and walking that had nothing to do with the hills.  Even the last 400 I had to walk some.  8:36

I am utterly pleased to have finished the race with a 2:01:22 and uninjured. I am SUPER glad that I didn't try and attempt the full marathon.  If I was as tired as I was at 13 miles, a full 26 miles would have been truly, truly miserable. And although the hamstring has some minor tightness after the race, I am healthy and happy.

Happy Running!


Running Through Phoenix said...

Great job LBR!

Ari @ Ari's Menu said...

Thanks for the shout out!! That course was ROUGH! I had to walk a lot of it, but mile 8 was freaking awesome!!! You did AMAZING!! Super inspiring!!

Christy said...

Great job!! And great time, especially for that course elevation (I have seen it)!!

Lesley Looper said...

Congrats on the wise decision, sound race strategy, and solid finish! Another half in the books-woohoo!