Wednesday, July 25, 2012

2012 Rock 'n Roll Chicago 1/2 Marathon Race Report

I had originally signed up for the Rock 'n' Roll Chicago 1/2 Marathon last fall when my intention was to also run the Chicago Marathon in October as my fall goal race.  When registration rolled around in the early spring for the marathon, I opted against it just to try and save money and do a less expensive, closer race.  In the end, I'm glad I did that because I got into the NYC Marathon , which is probably the most expensive marathon in the U.S. ($255 for registration?!?); however, I wanted to do another fall marathon so I could attempt a PR but just found out I probably didn't chose wisely since the Akron Marathon is rather hilly.  Anyways, I was still planning on this 1/2 marathon in Chicago to see if I could possibly PR.

My training has been going great lately (knock on wood) and I feel better & faster than I have in years.  I ran my fastest 5K in almost 10 years last month and have been hitting some great mile repeat times.  I absolutely love progression runs and have found that maintaining low 7:00 pace has become relatively comfortable.  My goal was to break 1:40 in this race and I knew if race conditions were perfect, it would definitely be doable. 

When I left the hotel at 5:15 AM, it was already humid so I knew the race would be tough just from that perspective.  I was excited to see my training pay off though and really went out there and gave it everything I had.

Arriving at the start in Grant Park

Todd & I pre-race

Hanging out in corral B right before the start

Oh wait...check out this close-up of the previous photo....please note the guy in the center with his butt cheeks hanging out of his green daisy dukes.  Yeah, I got stuck running behind him for about a quarter mile and couldn't handle it

There were about 15,000 finishers but I have no idea how many actually started the race

The Stats

5K: 23:02 (7:25 pace)
10K: 46:35 (7:30 pace)
10 Mile: 1:15:57 (7:36 pace)
13.1 Mile: 1:40:14
Average Pace: 7:39

Females (25-29): 28/2207
Females: 90/8998
Overall: 490/14881

I didn't meet my goal of breaking 1:40 but considering the humid conditions and the lack of gatorade at every fluid station (they alternated between water & gatorade every 1.5 miles so in reality, they only had gatorade every 3 miles), I was really happy with how I did.  Since we were running through downtown Chicago and through the underpasses, my garmin got messed up between mile 2 and 3 so I didn't really have accurate splits.  My mile 3 split was supposedly 5:54 and beeped well before the actual mile marker.  I think this happened to a lot of people because I could hear a lot of watches beeping around the same time as mine.  For this reason, I only have my first two mile splits (7:21 and 7:43) and had to rely on the splits from the race.  Despite the heat and my dehydration (I already had goosebumps around mile 4), I only went from 7:25 pace at the 5K to 7:39 at the finish.  Definitely not a negative split but still pleased with it.

I'm somewhere in this pack around mile 2

Around mile 7 & as I ran by Todd I told him the second half of the race "wasn't going to be pretty" but I still hung on for a decent time

A closer view

Post-race smiles

Hanging out in Grant Park afterwards

This race was my second fastest 1/2 marathon and 1:02 faster than the half I ran in February with more ideal conditions (1 mile loop course that was completely flat and colder temps).  I went from averaging 7:47 pace in February to 7:39 pace on Sunday.  I really gutted it out in Chicago and although I was disappointed I couldn't have run 15 seconds faster to break 1:40, I'd say my training is paying off!  


lindsay said...

Congrats! A sub-1:40 is totally do able. The heat is definitely a factor! Don't count out a PR at NYC, it's possible :)

Not So Newlyweds said...

Congratuations!! Wish we could have seen you!

Ashley said...

awesome girl!! and good seein ya at whole foods :) sorry I didnt chat more, I was trying to keep up with the beer tasting line lol.

Hey, I have a question for you too actually, my friend signed up for the 2 week thing at PIA and she saw a groupon the other day. Can she buy the groupon even though she did the 2 week class thing? Thanks!!