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U-City 10 and the 2010 GO! St. Louis Half Marathon

April 14, 2010

I had 2 races that I really wanted to PR this spring – The U-City 10 Mile and the Go! STL Half…

Back on March 28th I ran the U-City 10 mile.  This race is a lot of fun and the perfect tune up for the STL Half.  Last year, the conditions were cold and wet (snow), but I had a blast and ran perfectly.  This year it wasn’t quite as cold, but it was still wet.  There was a light drizzle for the duration of the race, but it didn’t stop me from running a 1:22:56.  Beating my prior 10 mile personal record of 1:25:13.  My strategy for this race was to run the first mile in 9:00 and then see what happened after that.  I literally didn’t decide to go for it until after mile 1.  The U-City 10 mile course is an up and down course, so I did what I could on the uphills and hammered the downhills.  My strategy worked.  Here are my splits – 9:03, 8:28, 8:40, 8:19, 8:05, 8:27, 7:50, 8:04, 8:21, 7:47.

One PR down.  Could I do the same at the STL Half?

The STL course is a beast.  The U-City course has a number of short, quick hills with one long climb coming back up toward mile 8-9.  The STL course has a number of LONG hills with a few shorter hills thrown in for good measure.  It’s tough and add in the fact that the temp was nearing 70 degrees by time I finished, I had my hands full.

Again, I started out with a 9:00 mile to get warmed up and then picked up the pace and pushed any hills that I could.  Miles 1 -6 are fairly easy with one tough little hill by Purina.  Mile 1 – 6 Splits: 8:54, 8:39, 8:37, 7:54, 8:07, 8:08.

Shortly after mile 6, crossing Market and making a turn West on Olive, it all changes.  The hills start.  At mile 10, the turn around to come back downtown for the finish, I was right around 1:25.  My goal was 1:50 and I knew it was going to be close.  Mile 7 – 12 Splits:  8:15, 8:21, 8:25, 8:29, 8:32, 8:59.   UGH.  Hills and heat are not a good mixture.

After reaching the top of the final big hill by AG Edwards on Market street, I checked my watch and saw 1:43.  Oh boy.  Fortunately the rest of the run was downhill and I managed to dig deep and push it to the finish.  Last mile – 7:54.  Finish time:  1:50:14.  Yeah!!! PR #2 and I beat last year’s time by 6 minutes.

Running nearly as fast as I could at mile 13 and dodging at least 2 people that were down on the ground being attended too, I did still manage to see my family that had come out to support me.  I gave as much of a wave as I could muster and breezed by.  It’s so wonderful to have support there for these races.  Seeing my wife multiple times during the Chicago Marathon was awesome and provided much needed pick-me-ups throughout the race.  I can’t thank my family enough for being supportive in my running adventures.

After the race we stuck around downtown and went over to the City Garden.  The kids (and I) had a great time kicking around in the water.  The cold water felt amazing after the run on my feet!   Running a Half, setting a PR, and then getting to spend time with my family and our good friends, the Calverts, made for a terrific day.  SIDE NOTE:  Dustan set a PR too!

My BG numbers were  good during both of these races.  In both occasions I was a bit high 200+ around the 3-4 mile mark, so I gave myself a small correction, so I could take a GU later on to provide some much needed fuel.  This approached worked well and I ended up around 140 at the finish both times.

Well, it’s back to Tri training and time to turn my focus to the bike.  My first outdoor Tri (with an indoor swim) of the year will be next Sunday and my first big open water swim will be at Carlyle in May for an Olympic distance Tri.

I’m calling the first quarter of my year a HUGE success!

One Comment leave one →
  1. Lorraine permalink
    April 20, 2010 12:41 pm

    Great job Gary! Congrats! So nice to hear about you enjoying time with your family too. 🙂

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