Race Report: 3M Half

January 19, 2014-3M Half Marathon

20th anniversary of the race.  I believe this was my 4th time.  3M was my first half.  3M is also my standing PR (2012).

Expo

I didn’t go.  I’ve been before.  It’s small and uninteresting to me.  They allow packets to be picked up by waiver (which I love), so my mom got mine.

Swag

I am pretty much going to whine every year until they start giving full size boxes of band-aids again.  It’s still the best swag bag you can get.  Tons of 3M products.  Sandpaper, tape, safety glasses, wrist brace, towel, earplugs, post-its, hand sanitizer, medical support wrap roll, a sample pack of band-aids, super glue, electrical tape.  And the tech shirt. IMG_0614[1]

Course

My standing PR is on this course.   That was 2 years ago, which was the last time I ran the race.  They changed the course last year again but changed it back to the 2012 course.

It’s billed as flat and fast.  I thought it was in 2012.  In 2014 it didn’t feel flat at all.

The course offered water and sports drink about every 2 miles.  In the middle our friends at Clif (parent to LUNA) had gels.   This year the course also had baby pools on the course to throw your wrappers in!  I loved that.  I only take gels at water stops, so I never have to worry about littering.  The Clif stop unfortunately wasn’t near water for at least another mile.

There were actually protesters at the start and midpoint of the race.  Apparently 3M kills forests.  Last time I checked, so did every other company in the world.  The only thing I worried about was they were on a bridge over the course at the midpoint, I am glad there was a cop watching them, I didn’t want anything thrown on me.  And  I am pretty sure their pre-printed signs were not recycled!  Hypocritical much?

Post Race

The new trend in Austin is to have food trucks come and sell you food after the race.  I don’t run with money and I also don’t throw any in my drop bag.  Just as well, I almost never eat post race food anyhow.IMG_0648[1]

There was enough at the finish for the average runner.  Bagels, bananas, oranges, and chips.  I took a banana, an orange, and a bag of HEB brand Doritos.IMG_0675[1]

Race Report: Shiner Beer Run

I will first say, had I been not letting work rule my life, this race would have been a lot easier.

We left for Shiner on Saturday afternoon.  Headed straight to packet pick-up at the Brewery.Image

Then to the hotel, got settled in and ready for dinner.  Back to Shiner to eat at Werners.  It may be a good restaurant, but it wasn’t on Saturday night.  We have 2 overcooked steaks, burnt appetizers, and dry chicken.  Plus they were out of sweet potatoes and ranch dressing (which made half our table very sad).  We still had a great time, even if the food wasn’t great.

After dinner, we headed to Buccee’s to get beer and dessert.  Since i’m a old lady, I went back to the room to finish my book and try to wind down.  Unfortunately I did not wind down. Then around midnight I couldn’t stop scratching!  Either I had an allergic reaction to something in the bed or something was biting me.  I had to take Nyquil to knock myself out to get sleep, which I hate to do.

Race Day

I actually slept later than I usually do.  Got dressed and headed to the lobby for breakfast, then loaded up in the car and headed to Shiner.

The start was crowded.  Narrow street with 500 5K people and 1000 half marathoners.  We barely made it through the massive portapotty lines before the start!  The first mile was pretty congested.  I tried not to waste too much energy bobbing and weaving.

The course was ok, I didn’t mind it, but it wasn’t terribly scenic.  Beginning and end were at the brewery, miles surrounding those were residential.  The bulk of the race was really rural, including a mile of unpaved road with big rocks (so not used to that!).  It was definitely not flat.

It was pretty warm and very humid.  Luckily the sun went away, or we’d probably fared much worse.  Everyone finished in once piece 🙂  Jenn completed her first half, YAY!Image

Dan didn’t get there in time for my finish 😦  How many halves have I run?  He’s never seen me finish a half.  The ones he did attend, he didn’t make in time.  HUMPF.  I even finished exactly at 10:20 am like I said I would.

My time was ok.  I knew it wouldn’t be a PR, it was too warm and I’m not trained up for it.  I am happy with what it was for the conditions and having run last weekend too.  A little bitter I didn’t win an age group beer stein, just because they were so cool!

I didn’t indulge in the beer and bbq at the end, none of it was very gluten free friendly.  Instead, we ate at Black’s BBQ in Lockhart.  It wasn’t free, but it was good and I had more options.  Plus the last thing I wanted right after running was bbq.  3 hours later, it sounded more appealing 🙂

Good weekend, although it seemed really short.  It was my first time to do an out of town race with a group and we had so much fun!  I think Dan even had fun with people he didn’t know 🙂  I can’t wait for the next one!

Race Report: Houston Aramco Half Marathon

June and I around 5 am, pre-race.  Wow, my bib belt really cuts me in half!

Course:  Reminded me of Dallas, lots of potholes and un-even.  I started in the “A” corral with the half marathoners.  Within the corral, there was suggested areas for paces.  I started behind the 1:45.  The start was on-time which was fabulous. It was so crowded, pretty much to the split for the full and half.

The weather was the best distance weather I think i’ve ever had.  Caution low was the best thing I saw all morning!

Crowd/music/cheering:  Was good in spots.  Wasn’t as high energy as I would have thought.  I didn’t hear much music at all.

Aid:  Very hard to move in and out to get water and/or Gatorade.  Streets seemed to be narrow in the aid areas.  Guess I have been used to courses with aid on both sides of the road.

Swag:  packet was full of useless stuff, as are most.  The race shirt was ok, but then again, I hate white shirts.  Finisher shirt was nice (although also white) as was the medal.

Here I am with my running buddy AK, who somehow found me twice on race morning.  She found me afterwards and ON the course!  I lost her during the race, which was fine, I don’t race with anyone.  We ran 3 miles together in Dallas (she slowed down) and a little over a mile on Sunday (she sped up).  I think she finished around 1:40.

I did well in the race, despite having issues sleeping because of my gluten issue the night before.  I didn’t really feel it was a strong race for me mentally or physically, so it must have been the perfect weather that allowed me to have my 4 second PR.

Facilities:  Port-a-potties at the start had no toilet paper in 1 section which was sad.  Bag check was quick and easy on both ends.  Everything post-race was inside which I LOVED.  And it was well organized and spacious.

Refreshment:  I guess for most people, it was probably awesome (sponsored by HEB grocery).  For me, not so much.  They had bananas (which is all I usually want).  The rest was gluten-laden: prepacked snackfoods, biscuits and gravy, breakfast tacos, etc.  They did have a nice area for the drinks with coffee, cocoa, sodas, chocolate milk, water, HEB sports drink, etc.  Needless to say, I only got a banana, which I did not eat (I had one as my first breakfast).

There were also additional booths outside the food area that had Honey Milk and HEB creamy creations ice cream.  Tempting, but I know how that story ends, so I avoided it.

There were probably a million bananas, i’m not even kidding.  Like 5 LONG rows of them!  I thought that many bananas was beautiful, it’s my #1 post-race food.

B1: banana, GF bar
WO: half marathon.  Gel, water, gatorade on course.
S:  mini rice krispy treat, turkey jerky
L: Harvest chicken salad, apple, almonds
S: cooked carrots, cinnamon, and coconut oil
D:  Mighty Fine bacon-jalapeno cheeseburger without a bun.  Brought it home to have on half my cheddar-jalapeno GF bun (because I forgot it at home).  Still haven’t brought myself to eat a burger without some sort of bun.  Dan and I shared an order of fries (which I ate most of before I could grab a photo).


S: Perfect Fit Gluten Free cookie, chocolate chip.  I’d never tried that flavor before, not really a fan.

I graze a lot after races, because I am not really hungry (this is really the ONLY time this happens), but I know I need to eat.  I wasn’t hungry at dinner, but it was necessary.  If you are wondering how many Weight Watchers Points Plus this was (~62).  And no, that’s not unusual for me to do 1 weekend day a week. No deprivation here.  I have at least one really high day a week and have for the last five years, it’s what works for me.

If you are wondering how many calories I burn running a half, not as many as you’d think.  Roughly 850.  I’d venture to say that most WW members would earn more than that.  I have a low RHR and a low burn, I roughly burn 65 calories a mile.  Most people burn around 100 per mile.  Based on that, most people would burn over 1300 calories in a half.  Calories burned has ZERO to do with why I run.

I’d consider the race a success, but it wasn’t one of my best.  I’m still proud of my effort even if it didn’t feel like my best.