Monday, 6 June 2016

Race Report: Traralgon Half Marathon

Thanks to White Line Images for the photo 

I ran my first ‘road’ half marathon in 4 years yesterday as part of the Traralgon Marathon festival, and it was probably the best race of the year so far, and was completely differently to how my half marathon went back when I was 15. Because that race wasn’t very good, I was still very young and I can’t remember much of it, I don’t consider that as my first half marathon; but I can remember that I walked a lot of it. As for this race, everything went to plan. I showed up to the start line 1.5 hours before the start which meant I was able to go for a nice 3km warm up jog, which was necessary as it rained, a lot.  
Just a bit wet.
At the minimum 20mm of rain, but at least it wasn’t cold! By the time I got to the start line I was feeling great, but still a bit daunted as I had no idea how I would feel during the race as my road experience is very small. My coach had told me previously to start the race slow, which I ended up doing thanks to a friend of mine; Brad. 

My running buddy for the first part of the race, Brad.
Thanks for the help!
Photo thanks to Mel Trease

He set a 4.30 pace and I stuck with him until about the 7km point and due to me feeling good, I decided to leave him (which we had agreed upon before the race, if either of us was slowing down then we could leave the other behind). I think this really helped me for the rest of the run as it kept me fresh for the later parts. The 7km point was also the point where we left the road and got onto the rail trail, and was why I put ‘road’ in quotation marks. I ran on the trail for about 7kms total and it was a hard slog. The rain and runners chewed it up into this muddy mess, which was soft underfoot (obviously) and the reason why I probably didn’t run as fast as I could have. By the half way point I was feeling great; running it in 47 mins, legs weren’t sore, wasn’t feeling tired, so naturally I decided to speed up. It turns out that was a bad idea, ran strong for about 2 kms, then hit a bit of a wall.
Finally found a gel that tastes good and is easy to digest,
I think I'll stick with this brand. Good effort Vfuel!
I had an energy gel at the 14km mark, which boosted my energy and was able to bring it home in the last 3kms, ending up with a time of 1:31:42. I loved the fact that I was able to negative split my second half by over 2 mins. I think going into my next half marathon I’ll start out a little bit faster, I don’t think it would hinder me too much by being a bit more tired at the halfway point, also if I am feeling good at the halfway point, I still wouldn’t speed up. I’d maintain the current pace, I’d much rather come home a lot faster in the last 5km. Overall though, very happy with my run!
Ended up finishing 23rd out 275 people.

 Also I’d like to make a mention to the huge support from my local running group. There were so many Sale and District runners running in it and it was great to have words of encouragement as I was running along, along with the high fives. Everyone should be very happy with themselves.
Some of SAD, well done to all!


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