Saturday afternoon Jessica and I made the 4 hour drive to Tyler, Texas to participate in the Tyler Rose 1/2 Marathon. It was a really nice drive through parts of Texas that I had never been...and of course we were excited and chatty so the drive went by really fast. We pulled in to Tyler and went straight to the racing site so we could get familiar of where we needed to park and how far it was from the hotel. After a dinner of hamburgers and french fries we were in bed and asleep by 9:15.
We woke up the next morning and it was 45 degrees which is quite chilly, considering it was almost in the 100's last week. I knew that the weather was going to be a challenge for me. Running in colder weather is always easier, but I feel like I did the majority of our training in humid hot weather here in Austin. Every year it takes me and my legs a bit to get used to the change from summer to fall, and even fall to winter.
We headed over and picked up our packets and did the bathroom thing and a .65 mile warm up. Before we knew it, it was almost time so we parted to find our pace groups. (I ran with the 1:40 group, and Jessica ran with the 1:50 group.) I found my group easily and at 8am we were off.
Our pace group soon kind of separated off and we were a group of about 8 people total. There were only 2 women in the group, myself, and another lady. From mile 1 to 8 is was easy breezy....up and down rolling hills staying right on the heels of the pacers. (The pacers were kind of cool, they were these two guys who were just cruising so awesomely consistent) Here is the elevation profile per my Garmin....
Then...this is when the wheels started to shake...I got a side cramp...from mile 9 to 10 I had to slow down because my side was KILLING me....I tried everything and it just wasn't going away. I started to fall behind the pacers and would catch back up with them on the downhills. Around mile 10 is where I pretty much couldn't catch back up to them. My legs were DEAD....They just weren't working. I kept the pacers in my line of sight but at that point I knew I wasn't catching up to them. I told myself I could only do what I could do and I pushed on best I could. I have never had this issue where my legs just wouldn't cooperate. It was so frustrating because mentally I felt fine. No hip pain, no foot pain....
As you can see my splits there at the end were just crap.
As I turned down to the finish line I sprinted in and I was SOOO happy to be done. My final time was 1:40:48. A PR of almost 11 minutes from my last half! 60th overall and 2nd in my age group. I felt like crap though. I just kept moving because every time I stopped to stretch my inner thighs and calves were cramping.
Jessica came in at around 1:56...super proud of her, she said she had a great race!
We hung around for awhile and they had some problems with the timing and didn't have our official times, so we decided to leave so we had time to go back to the hotel and shower before our 4 hour ride home. All in all it was a great trip and the race was well put together. And we got a great tech shirt and look how cool the medal is!
I should be super happy as my time goal for this race was 1:45 and I came in almost 5 minutes before that.....but something went wrong in the last miles of this race and I just can't get it out of my mind. Did I not drink enough water? I ate part of my shot blocks almost every 2 miles and had sweedish fish...this is the way I have fueled before and it's always worked. Was it the hills? Was it the cold?? The area where I got the side cramp still hurts today, and I have never had a side cramp quite that bad.
One of the best things about this race was the support that people gave me because I was wearing my Team Luke's Locker shirt. High fives, well wishes, pats on the back....people absolutely love Luke's Locker and had nothing but nice things to say. It made me VERY proud to be running on their team!