It was a great weekend of running. I made a trip to Naperville for work and came in a few days early since there were a few races I wanted to try out. The first was a the Naperville St Patty’s Day 5k. Initially, I had planned on taking my time on this run and just having fun since I had my half-marathon on Sunday. Well, I guess I am just too competitive to do that. I spoke with coach on my way to Chicagoland and he said to go for it since I would have all day to recover for Sunday.
I met up with some coworkers prior to the race for our pre-race photo. I took off and was feeling great. I ended up coming in at 22:20, a PR improvement of 1:36. I was wanting to break the 22 minute mark, but my first mile was a touch slow to make that happen. I ended up with 7:30, 7:16, 7:01, and last .1 at 6:23. I think if the course was straight and not out and backs with going around cones, I may have been able to break that 22 minute mark.
Sunday was the Half-marathon in Bolingbrook. I came into this race thinking if I came in the 1:53ish range I was going to be happy (PR was 1:57 and change). About 3 miles in, I was feeling good and clocking mile paces in the 8:20s and feeling awesome after Saturday’s race. I was running in stride with 2 others, Rochelle and Micheal. I turned to them and asked what they were shooting for and they said in the low 1:50 range. So we were in this together. The mile marks kept on hitting the 8:20 range and I was feeling really good. I didn’t seem stressed at all and my HR was running in the 150s and was staying steady. I kept with the pace with them. We ended up passing the 1:50 pacer at about mile 10/11. I was doing the math in my head like every other runner does in a race. I had 5k left and was at about 1:35. I knew if I kept the pace, I would be able to break the 1:50 mark. Goal was readjusted from 1:53ish to break the 1:50 mark. With about a mile to go, Michael broke off and took off. I took off as well, but couldn’t keep the pace with him. Once I hit the 13 mile mark, I could see the finish line around the corner. I high tailed it in the last .1 and ended up crossing the line with an official time of 1:49.13. 1:50 wasn’t on the radar coming into the day, but I was able to keep the pace with the help of others and we made it happen.
I’m now in the final stretch with the Nashville Rock n Roll Marathon about a month away. I was thinking if I come in at 4:10 in Nashville, I would be happy with the hills there. Today, there were some good elevation changes and thinking that the 4 hour mark is going to be the new target to hit next month.
Everything stayed in check with the Crohn’s and didn’t have the fight the bathroom gods. Someone asked what I use for fuel while I run since I have Crohn’s. Everyone is different with how they react to different types of fuel. I personally use Nuun in my water bottle and will take in a packet of Huma Gel about every 5 miles. As far as carb loading, I always eat a sleeve of Fig Newtons the day before. Yes, a whole sleeve. It’s a lot of carbs, but it works for me. In the morning before my long run, I will eat either a bowl of oatmeal or a bagel with peanut butter on top about an hour or so before my run. I’m feeling awesome right now and increasing my calories as I am going to have some 20 milers over the next couple weeks.