Sunday, January 25, 2009

Manhattan Half Marathon

Time: 117:00
Distance: 19 mi.
Course Map

Target: run comfortably at target marathon effort (and a little faster), hopefully beginning around 5:40 effort and average 5:35 (~1:13:10)
Race: 1:12:19 (5:31 average) for 6th place; ran controlled and even effort throughout

Splits:  Loop 1 - 5:38, 5:44, 5:25, 5:43, 5:37, 5:21
Loop 2 - 5:31, 5:34, 5:21, 5:40, 5:31, 5:16
Loop 3 - 5:25, 33 (5:31 average)
Full Results

Nick, his friend Nat and I got up early in Brooklyn to trek to Central Park for the first race in the New York Road Runners Half Marathon Grand Prix. The NYRR put on a half marathon in each borough in New York City throughout the course of the year, beginning with today's race in Manhattan. While we were treated with beautiful sunrise, it was shy of 20 degrees F out with moderate gusts of wind.

Race morning in Central Park, by fellow runner ECWC

While my legs were a bit stiff throughout the race, due to the cold, after warming up in the first few miles it wasn't too much of an impediment at the pace we were running. I ran pretty much exactly the way I was hoping to, keeping the effort very under control early and then slowly dropping the pace to a faster, but comfortable clip. While the splits were all over the place, due to the hills in Central Park, I dropped the effort fairly evenly, running 33:28 for the first lap (5:35 pace) down to 32:53 for the second (5:28 pace). Luckily I had company throughout the race, as T. Patrick Hynes of the Greater New York Racing Team and I figured out that we had fairly similar plans for the day. We led a chase pack for most the race and picked up many of the people who fell off the leaders in the second lap. He and Victor Vientos, who ran with us for a while, kicked fairly hard at the 13 mile mark and I didn't really give them a run for it. I was having a great day and wasn't going to jeopardize it by threatening my tight right hamstring on such cold day. I finished feeling aerobically comfortable and with my legs in good shape. The "cooldown" was rough, though, as the cold seized my legs very soon after finishing.

The start of the race at 8 AM

Nick and Nat also had good races, and we were in good spirits (despite freezing again) heading back into the subway. The only thing I missed out on today was practicing taking some GU and water while running hard because, well, it was just too damn cold.

More: NYRR Manhattan Half Marathon VideoNYRR Photo Gallery

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