Sunday, June 01, 2008

Half Marathon Round-up... (cripes this is a long post)

The home-made healthy pizzas were great last nite! Just what I was looking forward too. I got to bed at about 9.30pm, of course had problems actually getting to sleep but I'm guessing I was out to it by 10pm. At 2.15am, heartbroken, distraught, drunk little brother called me for big sister advice. I didn't get to sleep until well after 3am, then the alarm was off at 4.45am. I felt terrible before I'd even started! :)

Conditions - Bit cool. It was still dark when we started, really overcast.

Bang, gun went off. Donna (training buddy) and I took off, yes, just a little too fast. First km done in 4.37. We headed straight out to the breakwater, as due to popular demand, the windy route along the beach was done at the front end of the race, which was a lot better than having to struggle with it when feeling really ratsh!t.

Uh,oh... legs aren't feeling very good at all. Quads tight as rocks, breathing through the roof. Into the 3rd km and chest is tightening up, heart was going insane that I was a bit worried. Slowed the legs a touch, although it's hard to make yourself slow down...

3kms, Donna's cruising, about 50m ahead, I just cannot get my legs to move. That was the last we saw of each other!!

From there it just got worse for me. Into a strong headwind for a few kms, and tried to keep the pace but the legs weren't liking it at all. Felt like 2kg ankle weights were strapped on.

By 8kms, it was all over. I was way over the time I needed to have been at, and there was no way I was going to be able to do negative splits at the back end of the race!! 'Just maybe', I thought, I could come good and still do it. Do I surrender now and enjoy the run, or bust it to the point of discomfort like I currently am, and give myself every opportunity'. I did slow the legs, only they got faster again to that max happy-discomfort spot.

By now it was raining as well, nice and cool, but slow drizzly rain that the wind blows into you. It never stopped. Donna in her bright shirt (thanks D, just so I could see her from the great distance!!), was nowhere to be seen. Just way too far ahead.

11km got the GU out. Psychological edge, anthing was going to help. 'Just get to the end, you're past half way'.

15km saw I was gaining on one of my fellow road runners. That's always a bit of a booster although it is the worst feeling to have someone pass you. And trust me, I had MANY of them today.

18kms, I'd overtaken him - giving him encouragement along the way (how I got words out I'm not quite sure) - and another girl who earlier overtook me at 5kms. (Still people are overtaking me though, so it's bittersweet).

19kms, knew there was NO way I'd reach my goal unless I did sub 5min kms for the last 2.1km... Also developed one of my infamous crippling stitches. Ran most of the rest of the race one armed, other arm pressing on the stitch. I may just make the low 51 mins...

20- 21kms - didn't dare look at the clock, I'd rather not know.

21kms - as fast as I could for the last 100m. (gotta make it look good over the finish line) ;)

21.1kms - 1.53:11. Disappointed. Absolutely shattered after run, had to hunch over, couldn't talk to anyone. Although my lovely supportive clients tried to talk to me, I couldn't even comprehend what they were so saying. Except to say "can't (deep breath) talk." Didn't even see my other half, who was right in front of me. My legs are aching, they've never felt so bad. I feel drunk, swaying, need to sit down. I was so depleted of everything. Will I pass out, crap can't do that in front of clients ;P

It just wasn't my day today :) I knew that from the first few kms, the body just didn't want a bar of it. Donna did AWESOME and I hugged her in excitement when she told me her news - 1.48:20. She smashed our goal!! And did say she kept waiting for me to join her... oops :P She shouldn't have run so bloody fast then ;)

I'm absolutely shattered still. I have never pulled up this bad from a race before... ever. My whole body is aching like I'm ill. My legs are heavy as logs. My feet are just caning in the arches, I can't actually walk on them yet. I came home and crashed for a few hours, and I still will tonight. Haven't got my ravishing appetite yet... what's going on there. I think my body's in shock.

I feel as though I've had my peak this year. The 17km race in April I did way faster and felt fantastic through the whole race. By the 8km mark today I was already slower than the pace I did in that one. I felt better and pulled up 10x better after the 28kms four weeks ago. I think had the half been 6 weeks earlier, I would have cracked the mark. So much long training for so long, the body's on the downward 'i want a break' spiral I feel :) I have been going hard at it weekly since November last year.

So what's next
'Unfortunately' I still have the GC half in four weeks time!!! So there's still some long-ish stuff in training, but there's nothing I'm going to be able to do in four weeks. The hard yards are done already, just need to keep the legs turning over. I will speak to coach about how I've felt the past few long runs and see what training we should put together this next 4 weeks. A few of my fellow road runners said today already "you'll go heaps faster in the GC one then". We'll see. I won't place any pressure on myself as that takes some of the fun away. I want to enjoy the atmosphere and the run!!!

What I can do better
- Watch nutrition a little more the last week leading in. Food for optimum performance, not pleasure, and no using 'I'm running a half, I'll need the energy' excuse...
- And following on from that, I need to get my body fat down, less to carry, faster I can go. I'm not being unreasonable, but it is a little higher than I'm comfortable with at the moment. Lean, Mean, Running Machine is the goal!!!
- Unless there's been disaster or another break-up, turn off my phone, so I don't get calls :P and can have a real sleep!
- Don't place too much pressure on myself
- Warm up better
- Don't go out too fast!!!!!!!!!!!!! But you just can't tell me that ;P

So that's that. I'm still in a comatose state, I really need to chuck a sickie tomorrow, what will the boss say ;) I'm not being a wuss, if I feel like this tomorrow still it won't be safe for anyone. Mentally and physically exhausted!

Hope I don't sound like a sore loser, I was disappointed only because with all the training I've done, I should have been able to crack the 1.50. I only knocked 4mins off last year's time, which was my first half so I went in blind - not knowing what I could pull out. 4mins over 21.1kms isn't a lot... I took 2m30s off my 10km time 2 months ago!

BUT I still have a NEW PB!!!! So I'm happy with that! I can only go better next time, and that's always the goal - CONTINUAL AND NEVER-ENDING IMPROVEMENT!!! :)


Lyndsay said...

I loved hearing your run down of the run!

And umm... you were 4 mins better than last year, and reached a new PB, all on half a nights sleep??

Fan-bloody-tastic I say! Congrats to you, girl!! Woo!

Kek said...

Stress and disrupted sleep aren't the best ingredients for a PB. But you still did GOOD, don't lose sight of that.

Andj and M said...

Hi Selina,
That is still an awesome time! and Kek is right - not the best lead up of a night. I do know exactly how you felt thoough - I have been there with legs feeling like that and it is awful. Good on you for making it through to the end.
Personally I think that I would be quite chuffed with a 4 minute improvement! AND you have GC to look forward to and see if you can do it under the exciting conditions of such a big event!

Kristy said...

Great job Selina...Sometimes I think we are too hard on ourselves...I think you did a great time and we all have those bad days with the legs.

I hope you are feeling better tomorrow.

Doris's New Beginning! said...

Wonderwoman *singing the tune*
Wow is all I can say - I never have and will be a very big ask for me to even think of running something like that. Simply amazing!!! You were fantastic.d

Shar said...

Don't be so hard on yourself Sel. No sleep, wind and rain will not help your time AND you managed to do a PB!!!

Hop eyu feel better soon and your energy re-emerges.

Shar x

Hilary said...

Congratulations on a fantastic effort!! Despite the fact that you're not 100% happy with your results, I think you are a bloody champion~! :)

You deserve a big rest after that!

Hilary xx