I had a good race. I set a new PB by 55 seconds with a time of 2:20:21. My time in August 2006 was 2:21:16. That 55 seconds may not seem like much of an increase, but when you include the time spent in walking breaks, my performance today was even better than the 55 seconds. In 2006, starting with mile 9, I took one-minute walking breaks every mile, 4 minutes spent walking. Today I took 30-second breaks every half-mile, 12 minutes spent walking. My speed today was fast enough to get the 55 second PB and to overcome the approximately 4 minutes lost due to having more walking breaks today. I credit the walking breaks with my completing the race today with a new PB and with my feeling fine during and after the race.
Here are my mile splits.
Mile 1: 10:48
Mile 2: 10:36
Mile 3: 10:30
Mile 4: 9:31 (down a long hill. I tried to keep a constant pace but did speed up a bit)
Mile 5: 10:07 (down the remainder of the long hill)
Mile 6: 10:47
Mile 7: 10:25
Mile 8: 9:53
Mile 9: 10:48
Mile 10: 11:59
Mile 11: 12:21
Mile 12: 11:51
Mile 13: 10:40
One of my goals was to keep a uniform pace, and I did that. You can see that during the last 4 miles, I became tired. I've been running weekly 13 mile long runs for about a year at a pace of 11:30 - 12:15 or so. I'm not used to running a pace of 10:30 or so, and that pace took its toll. My next half-marathon will be in October at the World Senior Games in St. George, Utah, and I have six months to get used to the faster pace, as well as to keep my ability to run 13.1 miles.
Considering everything, I'm very satisfied with my performance this morning. I went out and maintained a pace a bit too fast, but I probably had a higher average speed than I would have had if I had gone out 15 seconds or so slower.
As soon as I can find the results online, I'll post my ranking in my age group of 70-75. If I had run this half last year, my time last August and today would have put me in second place.
I think I must look pretty old, because a lot of runners, as they passed me, told me to keep it up, that I was an inspiration to all of them. One girl told me that when she is 71 she hopes she can still walk, much less run.
The last half mile of the race was through the Gateway shopping plaza. Spectators were lined up solid on both sides cheering us on. That was nice of them to do that! I've always run smaller races, and I enjoyed the excitement, noise, and adrenalin rushes of this bigger race.
The weather was almost perfect! Temperature in the low to mid 40s (F), cloudy, no wind, low humidity, and no rain.
Here are two pictures from the race. In the lower picture are Ben my friend from Westminster College in Salt Lake, me, and my friend Bruce from Las Vegas.