Phedippidations World Wide Half Marathon Race Report

please excuse the lateness in this posting. I was originally going to do an audio clip to submit, but that fell through and I have been busy with work and the family…

My World Wide Half Marathon challenge starts out with me getting everything I needed together on Friday Night. I made sure that my bag was packed, I had all the electronics that I would need for the run. My wife was out of town, so I was making sure that I had everything so that when the babysitter showed up, I could be out the door and off to my race start.

I didn’t get to bed until 1:30am and the kids woke me up at 6am. I tried to have a race morning like any other. Peanut butter bagel, coffee… it’s just that I also had to make and feed the kids and so my concentration on my run wasn’t quite up to par. I packed the car with all my gear and I was ready for the babysitter.

FINALLY, she shows up and I am out the door. I knew that I wanted to take pictures of at least the race start, so I went to the Kroger right near the race start so that I could use the bathroom and get a camera. (Had I been smart, I would have gotten some gatorade in bottles – I had brought my own carb drink though). So, i grabbed a disposable camera and headed to race start.

It was cold in the morning, but I figured that it would warm up enough that I wouldn’t need it and so it was time to suit up. I strapped my iRiver to my arm. I was recording the whole run for a podcast and so I needed that piece of equipment. Next was my car key. Tied that to my waist.

Next were to safety pin gels to my shorts. You know… safety pin. I can only find ONE safety pin. Oh geez, I only have ONE safety pin? I usually have like 8 or 12 in the car. Well, it didn’t really matter because I could not find my gels to save my life. After a couple of trips to the trunk. I abandoned looking for the gels. Great. Just great, I wasn’t going to have any carbs to eat. crap.

I grabbed my mobile phone, its holder and a roll of 5 quarters and place the money and phone in the holder. There is a vending machine at Volunteer Landing to get some drinks other than water.

Finally, I had my Vibe MP3 which I was going to carry so that I could listen to Episode 65 of Phedippidations, the Crowd Support episode at the halfway point. So that had to go somewhere. Plus there was the camera. Where was I going to put that?

I ended up putting the camera in my waistband, only after carrying it didn’t feel to good as I had to carry my water bottle.

I was about 15 minutes late getting going and I was not very happy. I was having a hardtime with the camera and the MP3 player. I dropped the camera, a couple of times. My car key was poking me wrong. I couldn’t get my iRiver and Mobile Phone holder to play nicely with each other. I was ready to just give up and turn around.

Then, I put the iRiver on my waistband, Moved my Mobile Phone and quarters around on my arm. I Slipped the Vibe MP3 player and headphones around. Finally, I was impeded by the crap that I was carrying.

Next, I had to make an on-the-run strategy decision. I had a 16.9oz bottle of carb drink. Should I ditch it now ad save it for later, seeing that I would need the carbs later. OR do I keep it with me so that I don’t get a big drop in energy level.

I decided that I would drop it off at the bridge so that I would have some carbs for the last bit. They might not help me, but a perceived placebo effect may work. So, I get to the bridge on Third Creek and I drop of the sports drink… wondering if my plan of leaving the ONLY carbs I had was a good idea.

Even though I had mapped out the course, I wasn’t sure where the real mile markers were. I did have certain areas pre-selected as points that I would hit the lap on my watch. The first point was leaving The Wooded area of 3rd Creek and going into Tyson Park. I was running a 9:26 mile pace. WHAT?! 9:26… that is WAY TO FAST! I needed to be on a 10:00 min or so pace. Slow Down Terry.

There were a few runners along 3rd creek and none really anywhere else. 3rd Creek is a nice greenway and it very popular. Neyland Greenway, my next leg, is much more industrialized and leaves you exposed in many section. As I entered the transition from 3rd creek to Neyland, I was going at a 9:30 pace. It wasn’t hard… after all I was podcasting, but I still needed to slow down! I had almost 10 more miles to go.

Neyland greenway terminates at Volunteering Landing which is a boat dock, events area, scenic walkway, and more. There are vending machines and at the very least, a water fountain. So, I went to the Pepsi machine and tried to decide what I would get. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to try to defizz a Pepsi or go for the sweet-sweet lemonade. I go for the lemonade.

The machine would not take all my quarters… Oh, it took a quarter all right and wouldn’t give it back to me! Bastage! Now, I was really sunk. I now didn’t have enough money to try the other machine on the other side of Vol. Landing. Note to Self: Don’t bring $1.25 to a machine that costs $1.25, bring at least $2.50.

NO GELS!! NO CARB DRINK! Oh… the trip back is going to be painful. Really painful. And now I was really hungry.

For some reason I did not hit my watch at the turn around point to capture the split. I did put on the crowd support episode and started to listen to that. For those of you who don’t listen to Phedippidations, Steve had asked the listeners to submit audio clips of themselves or others cheering the runners during the challenge.

Lsitening to this episode was awesome. People had gotten their kids to cheer… had named runners by name … it was awesome. I had submitted a couple of clips of “You Might Be A Runner If…”, Mal James (A race director) had listed a technique that some professional atheles used in races. Paul in Okinawa had him and his wife cheering the runners in Japanese which was right at the time that I was back drinking my carb drink that I have hidden. When I entered 3rd creek (maybe 0.3 miles earlier) I was running a 8:27 pace for the my time 3rd creek and I so my distance average was a 9:01 pace.

I finished in 1:57:44 which was an overall 8:52 pace. I had not missed any carbs on the way back. And had run close to a 4 minute negative split (ran the 2nd half faster). I had predicted at race start that I would run a 2:16 and at the half way point a 2:09 half marathon time.

I was extremely happy to finish, to participate in this world wide event as a runner and the excitement that I had as being able to be a race director for this race. I had made a collage of pictures of my race and what I saw during the race.


(you can click the picture for a larger view)

About planet3rry

I'm a husband, father and runner in the Knoxville area. I love the way that running makes me feel and how it has changed my thinking. I am always looking for the new PR whether in the 5k or the marathon