Who looks ready to run?
Who is first off the line?
Who has their game face on?
That's Will Rosling!
The finish line is in sight
Finishing up the Spring for Kids 2K
Cheering on his friends
That's my boy
I've been trying to race a little less this year...well except for those 5 races in January...
New Year's Day triple - It started with the Capitol Mile. I had run sub-5 minutes last year, so figured I should be able to do that again. I never really considered the fact that my Garmin said the race was only 0.96 miles! The race was different this year...they got the distance right and by the halfway point I found myself in the lead...last year I had people to chase down, which I prefer. I ended up getting passed by 3 guys on the way back, yet still managed to win the Open Division! Needless to say, I did not break 5 minutes (5:08)...but I think I ran about the same pace as last year...maybe slightly slower. So after a bit of a disappointment, it was over to Gary and Shandi's for the Hangover Run and Beer Mile. I had won the Hangover Run last year, so I had to run it again to defend my title. I figured my main competition would be Sean Meissner, but I had just beat him in the Capitol Mile...I thought maybe he was saving himself for this race. I really like this race...it's a flat 3K on a mixture of surfaces...it reminds my of high school cross-country. I ran about the same time as last year, which was good enough for the win. OK, maybe Sean is saving himself for the Beer Mile. This would be my first ever Beer Mile...I knew I could run fast, but how was my beer drinking...average at best? I did do one practice round with the Old Gunslinger a day or two earlier. It didn't go real well for me...he drank his entire beer before I even had mine opened! Luckily this beer mile was using a keg and glasses rather than cans. I wasn't the first one off the line, but I was able to catch up to the leaders on the first lap. From there I didn't really have any trouble getting the beer down or keeping it down. I was a little surprised at how easy it seemed. In the end the race was a lot closer than I realized, but I had won. I couldn't believe I ran a sub-7 minute mile...my first thought was do I have another beer to drink or lap to run? And what a crazy feeling afterwards...I went from feeling fine right after the race to totally buzzed in minutes...it was weird. It took awhile, but I sobered up headed home. Good photos here.
Cascade Half Marathon - I went back and forth on whether I would run this race this year. In the end there were two main reasons I did...I've got a streak of now 8 consecutive times running the race and I had to try to avenge a terrible race last year. I was really defeated by the weather last year and it was going to play a factor this year too...but this time I was ready for it, mentally.
It wasn't as bad as it looks... (photo by Mick Evans)
At a minimum, I wanted to break 1:20:00. I was running about 6:00 minute pace and doing just fine until about mile 5 when I got too close to the edge of the road and rolled my ankle pretty bad. The problem was I couldn't see the edge of the road with the snow! At first I thought I might be done, but I walked it off and recovered pretty well...probably lost 30 seconds at the most and was back to the same pace as before in the next mile. Things continued pretty well until probably about 10 miles...I felt like I ran out of gas and my hamstrings were starting to tighten up. From there it got a little ugly, but I did what I could...leaned into the wind...and success, I hit that minimum goal...1:19:59! I'd like to give a superbad shoutout to Kristin, Roger, and Tonya for their PR's in less than ideal conditions!
Roaring River Half Marathon - I had planned to run the Napa Valley Marathon in March, but the race filled literally hours before I was going to sign up. I was a little disappointed, but the good news was now I could spread my training out over a longer period of time (new target = Eugene Marathon) and fit in some more races! This race was just 5 days after Cascade, so I took it pretty easy during the week and felt like I was ready again to run something in the 6:00 per mile range. I started off with Jason Hawthorne and we watched a couple other fast guys take the lead. We were all well below 6:00 minute pace and I remember thinking I was going to pay for this later. We basically headed north for the first half of the race and south for the second half...right into the wind...and it was really blowing that day. That coupled with starting too fast led to a major crash for me...from about 9 miles on back was a real struggle. I thought I might still have a shot at breaking 1:20:00 since I had banked so much time with the fast start, but nope...1:20:34. Not a great run (positive splits), but the course was nice...just would have been nicer to run on a nicer day.
Zena Road Run 15K - Tonya is training for the Eugene Marathon too, and we got to run this race together. It has been around forever, but I had never run it. I knew it was hilly, but I had no idea. Sorry, Tonya. The good news was that it was an absolutely beautiful day.
iRun for Kids 10 Miler - Just ran this race today...I was hoping for something around 57 minutes and ended up running 57:24. Plug that into the race time predictor and you get a marathon of 2:40 and change...I'm in the ballpark. I've got one more big test before Eugene...the Corvallis Half Marathon...maybe sub-1:16? I don't know...I've heard there are hills. Hopefully April will culminate with an epic Eugene Marathon so I can "retire" from road marathoning.