My goals for the Prairie Fire half marathon have been ever fluid, to say the least. In January it was a goal race, but after 5 weeks off with tendon issue #1, I decided I likely wouldn’t have any great races this spring and eased back into training. Training went better than expected, progressed faster than expected (not necessarily smart!), and was uninterrupted for about 5 weeks, so I began thinking that I might just be able to run a solid half there after all, weather permitting.
Then tendon issue #2 occurred and I questioned whether I would even be able to run the race (I was already registered). I immediately stopped running when my tendon bothered me just slightly, and didn’t start back again until it felt 100% because I was so paranoid following the previous injury. This amounted to just 12 days off, which was much better than 5 weeks but still left me feeling soft and out of shape!
I immediately felt better once we turned around, but I could still tell it wasn’t going to be my best day. I’d initially hoped to run a huge negative split on the way back, with those miles in the low 6:30’s or high 6:20’s, but I could tell that wasn’t going to happen. At that point I hoped I could hang on to 6:45ish and finish 8 miles at tempo, because I was sure having thoughts at stopping at mile 6. But I was able to hang on for 8, fortunately! My second half splits were 6:42, 6:44, 6:44, and 6:39. Miles 5, 6, and 7 had declines that helped (running with Missy sure helped as well!), and the final mile I just gutted out and even sprinted in. I will note that Missy's Garmin splits we're faster than mine despite us running side by side the entire way, so I would like to claim hers for a little faster average! 😄
|This felt like a heck of a lot more than 119 feet!!|
Heck, really at this point it’s all the same even if I run in the low 1:30s (which is a definite possibility!), because it’s not going to be a PR either way. So my A goal is to finish strong and injury pain-free! We will see what the weather does too – this race is super flat but Wichita is ALWAYS windy and often painfully so. If it’s not 70 degrees it will be better than last year! Last year I had a tough race there, as the wind was gusting up to 40 mph and I had an awful side cramp during miles 7-10. I was racing for place, not time, due to the weather conditions, and really had to fight for 3rd female (the eventual 4th female and I passed each other back and forth several times, and I took 3rd by less than 10 seconds while listening to her hometown crowd cheer for her to overtake me). I ran just over 1:30 for it, which was really disappointing because I was nice and fit then, so it will be ironic if I can beat that this year but I am going to try!