Wednesday, April 29, 2009

My First Half Marathon Race Report, part two

Here is part two of my OKC Half Marathon race report. There are a few pics here and a few other details and thoughts about the race.....

Me and my buddy Adam, after the race.

Above: Running Briefs, Fair Weather Runner,  Adam, and me.

I had a nice meal at Spaghetti Warehouse the night before the race. I met fellow bloggers/runners/Kansans Fair Weather Runner and Running Briefs, who were running their first marathons, and my friend Adam, who along with me was running his first half marathon. . 

Yeah, this massage on my calves after the race felt incredible.  I think I could have stayed in the massage tent all day.

The run started/ended at the OKC Memorial, the site of the OKC bombing. Above and below are a few pics of the memorial. It is very touching/emotional to think about all the lives that were lost in this senseless bombing.

Above is the race on TV. The race was televised live on local TV....a church next to the Start/Finish had it playing live on a big screen TV. The church also provided free pancakes, sausage, drinks, etc all day to the runners...since all the roads are closed on Sunday AM anyway, they have church on Sat night, cancel their Sunday church service and encourage all their attenders to serve and minister to the runners and families that day. My kids had a fun time with their inflatables, tatoos, face painting, coloring contests, games etc. Pretty neat that the church does this I think.

A pic of the family at a fountain near Bricktown, the night before the race.

Lesson Learned
As I mentioned in part one, the biggest lesson I learned in my first half was about being properly hydrated. How do i know I was dehydrated? Well, there were two times during the race when I got weak in the knees and light headed...I actually thought I was going to pass out one time and had to sit down for a couple minutes to try to get my strength back. Then after the race I drank 3 bottles of water, 2 bottles of powerade, 1 bottle of orange juice, and 2 milks within 30 minutes, and then an hour later I had a large cherry limeade from Sonic...I couldn't pump liquids into my system fast enough......the thing I wish I had known before was that apparently you're supposed to over-hydrate in the week/days leading up to the race, which I didn't do (didn't help, either, that I didn't drink anything before the race).......also, talking to some other runners, I guess when it's hot you're supposed to drink the gatorade instead of the water, because it contains sodium, and I didn't know that or do that runner said he takes salt packets from McDonalds along and takes one every 4-5 miles to keep his sodium intake going. By the way, the post race meal was Carl's Jr hamburgers, and I ate only a few bites, then we had pizza for lunch and tacos for in that one day I had three kinds of fast food meals, which I never do...

Split Times

As embarrassing as this is, I'm going to post my split times.....

mile 1=902---started strong, felt good
3=855---cruising along
6=955---still felt pretty good up to this point
7=1118---started getting light headed/weak kneed here, about mile 7.5
9=1241---light headed and dizzy again
10=1255--horrible calf cramping started here
13=1506---yeah this is the mile when I really tanked
.1=1548---struggling to cross the finish line

My 2:34 time wasn't as fast as I had hoped for (shooting for 2:15-2:30), and I really think I could have hit 2:15 if I hadn't had the calf cramping, but I am glad I finished, and the 13.1 miles is the farthest distance I've ran......hopefully next time I'll hit 2:15 or better.....I still got a PR since it was my first race of this distance though.....(one funny side note, the first thing my son said to me when I got finished was "what took you so long?"...the little stinker)

50 States Club

I met two guys who are shooting for the 50 states club (running a marathon in all 50 states) was from Georgia, and one was from Michigan...the guy from Georgia plans to run 12 marathons this year, and the guy from Michigan ran 15 last year, including Alaska....I can't imagine what these 50-staters spend on these races with airfare, hotels, entry fees,'s got to be we were talking about running, the guy from Georgia made a good point, I thought...his teenage son is really into basketball, like a lot of teenagers....everything is basketball, basketball, basketball.....his son runs too, and he has been trying to sway him to become more of a runner and drop basketball, because the odds and percentages are much more in your favor to get a scholarship for running/cross country than for basketball.....maybe I'll try to get my kids involved in running, if it means it could help pay for their college someday........


Jess said...

I was gonna say that you probably weren't so much dehydrated as you were elctrolyte-deprived. Certainly, it's wise to drink plenty of water int he days before a race like that, as well as avoid dehydrating things like alcohol, but a lot of runners need some electrolyte replacement while on the course.

There's lots out there (any "ade," GU, sport beans, Shot Bloks, Nunn tablets, etc); you just have to experiment with what works best for you and what sits okay in your stomach.

Again, congrats on your first HM! You did an awesome job!

Ashley said...

Great pics - you're really TALL! That or everyone around you is just really short. ;)

For hydration, have you ever heard of S-Caps or E-tabs? They are electrolyte pills that you can get at any running store or GNC. They are basically just tablets with sodium and potassium to help keep your electrolytes balanced when you're running. I always take a couple the night before a long run and again the morning of. I put a few in my fuel belt the day of my HM, but it was the belt got wet and the capsules disolved, lol. Anyway, something to look into for the next time.

Great race report - awesome job completing your first half!! :)

Shannon said...

Awesome Pictures, I didn't get to tell you Congratulations!

Julie said...

Great job on the finish, the conditions were BRUTAL! Of the 45 people on our bus trip, not a single one hit their goal time. So just finishing is an accomplishment in itself!

Sodium & electrolyte replacement is key when you're going to be sweating a lot, I like the Succeed caps.

RunToFinish said...

i wish my parents had encouraged me to run more, i wouldn't have gotten chubby!! well maybe i played a lot of sports...and drank a lot of soda

ShirleyPerly said...

Way to gut things out in tough conditions! A hot race is never easy but, yes, good hydration and taking in some electrolytes helps, as does training in heat to get acclimated to it (FL is a good place for that :-).

And being a 50-stater myself, I would say the traveling and racing can be expensive but does not have to be. Most of my airline tix and hotel stays are free because my husband travels a LOT for work and accumulates freq flyer & hotel points up the wazoo. I know some 50-staters who combine their work traveling with their marathoning and/or just drive to many races and stay with friends. Since there's no time limit to completing the circuit, some people just do 1-2 marathons a year which isn't much more costly than what other non-50-staters do. Come join us!

Missy said...

Calf cramping, yep, another sign, need more salt:) Everyone here is spot on, hot days, stick with the gatorade and don't totally flood your system with water leading up to race day. You'll wash away all your electrolytes! Pee needs to be light yellow. If you're peeing a slushy, you're dehydrated (or not going at all).

I hammer fluids at the end of hard race or workout too.

Marci said...

COngratulations Oz!! I agree with Jess...likely electrolyte deprived. Either way it was your first HM, so be proud and don't let a "time" ruin the amazing accomplishment you achieved!

Chic Runner said...

Ahhh ozzie. There are so many good lessons learned! :) It's a lot different than running a 5k or 10k. Great job on completing your first 1/2. Definitely check out nuun (electrolyte water) and hydrate more next time. :) You'll for sure get that goal time next race, and I know I've told you before but your family is so stinkin' cute! :)

Fair Weather Runner said...

you will hit your goal next time, you should think about doing the wichita half in sept. it always seems to have great weather conditions. those conditions on sunday destroyed everyone's pace. NICE WORk! Like the pictures, hope you share some of you crossing the finish line.

by the way, you have such a great family! your wife is fabulous and you have the best behaved children. you're blessed! are you all doing the river run together?

aron said...

you will definitely get your goal next time!!! electrolytes are a big thing with running ESP when its hot! at least you know now :) start testing out different sources during your training for the next one. congratssss again!

IzzyBubbles said...

I second Beka's comment on your family! They're troopers, especially to come eat at the Warehouse on Sat. night with all of us! Your boys are totally cute.

Oddly enough, I think we had similar HM experiences, mile 7 was where I started to really suffer in mine and completely went downhill. I think there's a learning curve to these things. What I did for the entire week before OKC was drink at least 2 bottles of Gatorade a day (along with as much water as I could stand), and on race day I drank only the Powerade for the first several water stops and eventually started taking Powerade AND water once we got past the halfway point. And I had my Gus at every 4-5 miles on top of that.

The Tri Runner said...

Congrats on finishing your first half marathon. That is awesome!

Be careful, half marathons are a gateway race because soon you'll want to run full marathons.

joyRuN said...

Sweet pics! Yeah - it's tough to get a good race in that heat.

I think I read somewhere that best time for hydration is the week leading upto the race.

TiredMamaRunning said...

Again, great job, Oz-the things that didn't go so smoothly later in the race are things you can easily correct next time out so it's always a victory when you have little things you know to do differently the next time.

I don't use S-caps for anything but marathons (used the pre-race pack before MCM and Eisenhower), but I do use Nuun capsules in my handheld for all summertime long runs....they're fairly tasty and really do help keep the electrolyte balance in check.

Candice said...

Great thoughts on everything. I guess that's why they say that your first marathon/half goal should just be to finish. It's hard to know what to expect the first time. I was a bit ashamed of my time for the marathon, but I know next time we'll both hit those goals! Now we have some practice under our belts:)

Candice said...

Oh, and that's hilarious what your little boy said to you at the finish. Haha!

Mark Berry said...

Oz, great pictures and really appreciate the analysis. It sounds like more hydration and better pacing (holding back) at the beginning and you could easy hit your target. Thanks for sharing - it keeps the rest of us thinking about what we can do (without beating ourselves up!). Mark