Black Diamond Half Marathon

Part of the buildup to each marathon is doing a few races to prep for the main event. With 4 weeks to go until Louisville, KY, I put myself into the Black Diamond Half at Nolte State Park. It was a great morning – sunny and cool – the organization of the event was good and pre-race check-in went smoothly.

What didn’t go smoothly ? Well, my pre-race preparations… On Saturday I was up in Snoqualmie Pass biking with a friend on the Iron Horse Trail, taking in the glorious mountain air and scenery. We felt surprisingly good after 32 miles. Sooooo, we decided to hit the Puyallup Fair and walked the length of that a couple of times, watched a loud concert and then went wine-tasting. All that on an energy bar, bag of nuts and 20 oz of Ultima. Finally, pre-race bedtime was not until 1AM. Every rule violated.

The race was awesome ! I found myself concentrating on the right pace, drinking easily on the run. By the time I was at mile 3 and mile 5, I realized I was maintaining a good sub-8 min pace and it didn’t seem to be hurting me at all. I was amazed at how well I handled the 2 or 3 good sized hills. The only disappointment was the surprise once-around-the-lake trail run when we returned to the park. I thought I was done but nope… that extra 1.2 miles was hard mentally.

I powered into the finish and stopped my watch at 1:39:18, one of my fastest times for that distance. There goes all my training and pre-race prep theories…

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~ by John Rankin on Sep 25, 2006.

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