Churchill’s 50th Half Marathon 2017

I’ve got a new shirt color for my running clothes rainbow… purple!  I’m liking this shirt, it fits really good.  Also love the medals this year too.  On the back is the Toledo Roadrunners logo.  Walt Churchill himself even handed me the medal when I crossed the finish.  But lets not get ahead of ourselves…

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For the Toledo Roadrunners, the Churchill’s half marathon is one of the large club events – right after the Glass City marathon in terms of promotion and involvement.  The race actually used to be a spring event, and in 2013 they changed it to be the premier fall event.  This year is the 50th annual event, and in honor of that I thought it would be fun to wear my 46.5th event shirt (and I am easy to spot in pictures!).  The weather was looking chilly for the race, so we all were flip flopping on outfit ideas up until it was time to leave for the race.    Obviously in Ohio we run in the cold a lot, but this was the first race in below freezing weather and I’d like to be appropriately dressed!  I ended up wearing a short sleeve t-shirt, with warm arm warmers but started out with a long sleeve shirt as a top layer for the first 6 miles.

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I am happy to report that I dressed well!  I was comfortable with my selections, and didn’t even want to take off my gloves during the race.  Race temp was 25 degrees (feels like 16!) at the start.  At the end it was closer to 30 degrees.  Two fun things about this race 1) it’s a point to point race, so we have to be bussed to the start line.  I think it’s the only race around here that does that.

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2) we all get to wait inside a high school for the race start.  That’s the BEST because we can meet friends, sit around and chat, and if you choose to use the *indoor* toilets, it’s warm and there was no line just 5 mins before the race start!!

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Run Toledo Ambassadors out in full force!  (actually, a few of them didn’t make the picture)

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Large group from Moms/She Runs This Town too!  AKA, we all wear grey to run in the winter!  😉

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I don’t have a lot to report about this race.  I was hoping I’d get a sub 2 hour finish, only because I really fell short of that hoped goal at the Columbus half marathon a few weeks ago.  Mind you, I wasn’t actually going to be “racing” to make this goal happen, but I wanted the day to represent where my training and paces have been lately.  I can still run sub 2, can’t I??  I know I’m in no PR shape because I haven’t been training hard, due to hamstring tendinopathy issues, which I still feel are holding me back.

Anyhow, back to the race.  I had my playlist all set, and pretty much ran the race on my own.  I did run into some friends early on, and was happy to see they were on their way of their own goals of sub 2 hrs.  They have been training hard for this race all season!

Around mile 8 I thought I heard people calling my name.  I had to think about that for a while because I didn’t have a personalized bib, or was my name on my shirt somewhere?  Why were people yelling “Lisa”?  So I took a look back, and sure enough, it was someone from Moms/She Runs This Town!  She had a little cheering station.  That was a fun surprise!

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I am happy to report I felt decently strong going up the hills on the course and didn’t need to walk them.  Although I did take a few walking steps at the top of the toughest hill section, but it’s all good, I went back to running after that.  On the way to the race I remembered I had removed the “elapsed time” field on my watch (I didn’t have it during the Columbus half), so I added that field on my watch.  I had elapsed time and average pace on one screen.  But for some reason, the numbers are displayed differently when there are 2 fields vs 3 fields, and I couldn’t figure out what it was telling me.  In my mind I needed around a 9:00 mile to get a sub 2.  That may have been slightly incorrect, but I knew I needed to be somewhere close to 9:00. Was it 9:10?  I wasn’t even sure!  So as my overall pace slipped from an 8:47 to a 9:02, I was thinking my goal wasn’t going to happen.

As I got around a half mile to the finish, I asked a group of ladies that I was approaching if we had hit 2 hrs yet.  Very lucky for me, her response was “no, it’s only 1:54”.  Then I realized it was another friend from the Moms group.  I was excited to see her!  When I heard that response, I started thinking “Oh yeah, this is going to happen!  I have TONS of time to get to the finish line.”  I started calculating and came up with some sort of 10 mins left or something crazy like that.  Then after recalculating I realized I really had only enough time to keep the current pace I was going and MAYBE make it.  Yikes, I had to get a move on it!  I mustered up the last bit of energy I had left, forgot about the angry glutes and hammies, and started booking to the finish.  Yep, “booking” meant running maybe an 8:00 pace, really NOT very speedy, but it sure seemed like it!

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Thanks for taking my picture Alan!! (ps, Alan did pretty good.  1:36 finish, aligned with his training lately too!)

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As I started down the finish chute I caught a glimpse of the clock… 2:00.  OH MAN, I missed it.  Crap.  Then I hit the finish line and stopped my watch.  My watch said 1:59:58.  Woot!  Maybe I did get my goal after all.

We headed over to the post race tent.  We had fun catching up with all of our friends, eating some delicious (and hot!) ham & bean soup, cookies and of course, beer!  The brewer brought along their Glass City Glory beer (remember that story?, I named that beer!!).  Yum!

OMG, it’s “my” beer!

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Cheers!!

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When’s the best time to wear your Boston jacket, which never matches anything?  Whenever you are with a bunch of other runners!  Go team purple & orange jackets!!

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Teehee, what’s my friend Chris thinking back there?  LOL!  (“mmm, excellent beer…”)

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And I even caught race director Todd off guard.  Nice pictures Lisa!!

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I found out that I did indeed have a finish time of 1:59:56.  Yahoo!  I’m happy with that.  Seeing all of my friends achieve their goals makes me want to set some new (reasonable, obtainable!) goals for Glass City half marathon in the spring.  I’ve already got a PT appointment scheduled for next week in hopes of getting stronger and all recovered by the time training starts again.  Goals, people, goals!

So there you have it – my 6th Churchill’s half is in the books.  Not my fastest, not my slowest.  But always a good time, well organized race.  Thanks to all of the volunteers and TRRC members that make this happen!

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Q:  Are you good at figuring out numbers when you run?

This is just another example of how I do not excel at that!!

Q: Do you wear a lot of a certain color when you run?

Q:  What did you have for breakfast before your last race?

English muffin (we were out of bagels) and a fig bar for me!  

 

15 Comments

  1. Wow! So cold there! Congrats on getting the sub 2 you hoped for! Awesome job! I’m definitely not good at figuring numbers when I run. I rely on my watch too much lol.

  2. Huge congrats on your sub 2 and sorry again that I didn’t get a chance to chat before you took off! Talk about cutting it close! lol.

    I started off following Richard, since he said they were going for 2:20:00. But a half mile in they were running at 9:30 min/mi and I cut back because I knew for me it wasn’t sustainable.

    First half of the course isn’t as flat as I had heard!

    I had my paces all figured out, or so I thought. Even at 2 hours and 11 miles I was pretty set. Then somehow I completely lost my mind and couldn’t count to save my life.

    Nikki, so thankful for her, took a flat out, peanut butter, butter, and a few dark chocolate chips to make a delicious breakfast about 2 hours before the race. Different from my normal pre-race meal, but was tasty and filling!
    Dan Clark recently posted…Churchill’s Half Marathon RecapMy Profile

    • Hey, I told you there was one big hill a few miles into it! That one is long. Did you happen to see the people dressed up as unicorns passing out cookies at the start of the path to the park? I was tempted to stop for a cookie break!

  3. Drew Pearce

    Seems like every time I have run a marathon, in the last 4 or 5 miles, my brain cannot comprehend math. I look at my Garmin and try to calculate my finish time and I am always WRONG! All the blood is in the legs. As for color, I wear whatever can pass for clean. I have a friend who would love your purple shirt. She still regrets not running Boston in 2015 because the jackets were purple. She qualifies every year but only runs it occasionally. Pre-race meal is always oatmeal, banana, and a cup of coffee. The advent of single serve oatmeal cups has made race day breakfast a lot less of hassle if you are out of town.

    • I think Boston should offer a classic blue/white jacket, and then also put out a special edition jacket each year. Just think, they could make even more money on those jackets! I would have bought a classic blue over my 2015 purple jackets!
      Agreed – those oatmeal cups are so handy!!

  4. Congratulations!! You got that goal :) That is a pretty nippy race, it is always so tricky trying to get the layers just right. I like your idea of warmers with the short so you still feel loose moving.
    It is awesome you had a cheer section and warm place to wait to start – sounds like a a very fun event!

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