"In spite of the brutal course and poor organization at the race, I pulled off a PR!"
How I did it: I followed Hal Higdon's intermediate training plan (more or less) and trained for 12 weeks before the race. I knew it was a hilly course, so I trained some on hills - but I was still unprepared for the largest hill on the course, which was more like a mountain. It was seriously intense!
The race was not well organized, so even though I got there in plenty of time, it took ages to park, parking was far from the start line, and then when I finally got to the start, I discovered there were only two gear check lines for 3500 participants - and not enough portapotties either. I ended up standing in the gear check line until about 13 minutes before start time. No time for the portapotty line, so I ran off to a private area of the mall and peed in a gap in the bushes adorning the front of a closed bridal store. Hope they don't have security cameras.
Feeling much lighter, I made it to the start line. The pace runner went out way too fast, more than a minute under pace, and I made the mistake of sticking with him for the first mile. After that, I ran my own pace. I was aiming for 1:45. The hills at mile 7 and miles 11-12 were brutal. The first was long and steep; the second wasn't that steep but was even longer and seemed it would never end.
It was not my most comfortable race. My left psoas was hurting from the first mile and I had a blister on my left foot from pretty early on. I was in a world of pain for the last 5-6 miles but I pushed myself and I broke my PR out of sheer determination.
Preliminary results show me as the 239th finisher with a chip time of 1:47:53.2.
EDIT: Final results - #238 overall, #14 in my category. Chip time as above. Pace 8:14.
Resources: Hal Higdon Training Program
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