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I am cursed when it comes to race day weather. If you read Tuesday's post, then you know Dana and I were rained on a bit during th...

The Long & Short of Rock & Roll Nashville Half Marathon

By 5/05/2016 , ,

I am cursed when it comes to race day weather.

If you read Tuesday's post, then you know Dana and I were rained on a bit during the Rock 'N Roll Nashville races. 

Luckily for me, the rain had mostly passed by the time I started the half marathon. I didn't, however, dry at all during either race. When I finished running the half, I was still a sopping wet mess. Being a sopping wet mess created some problems. Chaffing problems. Fun times. 

I will say that Nashville really upped their spectator and on-course cheering squad game this year. I would daresay that it's in the same ballpark as DC's spectators, and if you've read this blog for any length of time then you know how much I adore DC's spectators. Way to go Nashville, your efforts on the course really paid off and made the course more enjoyable. 

I didn't have a time goal for this race. Having just run the 5k, faster than I planned to, I knew that I'd be tired, and the last 5k of the half would be my choking point. I've never run more than 14 miles before, so running 16.2 was going to be a PR in itself.  So let's get on with the recap.

Dana covered our pre-race fun in her post {HERE}. Lightning, rain and crowding under awnings made for a 40-minute delay to the start of our 5k, which led to both of us getting a bit chilled. Luckily, the 5k was the perfect warmup. I did go out to fast. I had planned on sticking to a 12 m:m pace, but instead we settled around an 11 m:m. It didn't feel like I was working. That was the comfy pace I settled at. I was so happy that Dana kept pace. My official 5k finish time was 35:02. Not a PR, but not anything to sneeze at, considering I didn't push myself at all. Also pretty awesome and something I don't know if Dana realized was that we finished in the top 50% of 5k participants! I also finished in the top 100 for my division. I don't know that I've ever done that before. Such a great race and day for so many reasons. I will mention that Dana and I are in the same division, so she also has the same bragging rights as me.

  • OVERALL1075 / 3100
  • DIVISION97 / 247
  • GENDER581 / 2117

So after the 5k, we had to book it back over to the start line. It was a mile away. Nothing like adding another mile. 

I got to my corral with plenty of time. I think they'd just released corral 25 when I got to the starting line. My corral was 32, so I had more than enough time to catch my breath. The weather decided to cooperate finally. The rain stopped, and it gradually got nice and warm. 

In my corral!
Mile 1 - I ended up at the very front of my corral, and took off at a nice pace. I called the hubs after I cleared the loud speakers. I waved frantically at Mom and Dana as I rounded the bend onto 4th Ave. Still chatting with the hubs as we turned onto Demonbreun St. I got off the phone with him just before we turned down 7th Ave. It felt nice. I was warm from the 5k, and just taking my time and enjoying the sights. We were following almost the same path we had for the beginning of the 5k. 11:55 pace

Mile 2 - Just chugging along. I felt good. I people watched as I ran along. The spectators were in full force and they were awesome. Cheering and hoisting signs. It was lovely. Hey there's the naked statues. I'll be seeing those again. We're headed towards Music Row. Really I'm in nirvana during this mile. It really couldn't get better. 11:58 pace

Love the Belmont banner!
The guys leading the
blind runner are pretty
awesome too! 
Mile 3 - What a nice straight mile. We're still running down Music Row. RnR had St. Jude banners everywhere. It was nice to see them. There is so much energy on the course. It's pretty awesome to see the relentless line of runner ahead of me. There aren't any gaps in the runners yet. I just keep chugging along. 12:52 pace

Mile 4 - We've entered Belmont University territory. I snap a pic in honor of my brother-in-law. Belmont is his alma mater. I know I'm slowing down, but I don't even care. I'm enjoying the sights too much. The race doesn't need to be rushed. 12:40 pace

Mile 5 - We're chugging through the neighborhood around the college. Spectators are out and cheering us on. This bit was dead last year, not so this year. The residents are out in force, and it's lovely. 13:41 pace


Selfie at Mile 5!
Love my new
"May the sparkle
be with you"
headband
Mile 6 - We're still chugging through neighborhoods and rounding around Sevier Park. I know we're getting close to the commercial district again. I'm still just enjoying my slow, even run. 14:13 pace

Mile 7 - I pass by the Frothy Monkey, where Dana surprised me last year. Man, this area is really nice. I must be high, because nothing is really bothering me. Maybe deciding that I don't care about time has enabled me to just solely enjoy the run. 14:27 pace

Mile 8 - We've wound ourselves back around Belmont, and the college kids are out and dressed in costume. Unlike DC, the college kids are not handing out alcohol, but they are handing out enthusiasm with gusto. They're dressed crazy and whooping and hollering. I do pick up my pace a bit. 13:37 pace

Mile 9 - We're headed back towards downtown, and the scenery is starting to reflect that. My legs are feeling good, but I've miscounted my gels and I'm going to have to go back to eating one per mile until I'm out. Way to be good at math, Heather. My legs are starting to feel a little heavy, and I start slowing my pace a lot. At least the naked statues are back, and my phone dies. No more music. 14:02 pace

Mile 10 - Salt packets were offered at the end of this mile, and I should've taken advantage. It was getting very warm, but my clothes were still sopping wet, and I didn't feel warm. I am incorporating more walk breaks into my routine, and that's helping my legs feel less tired. We're running through The Gulch. That's an unpleasant name, but the Elvis with a bullhorn is pretty amazing. 15:05 pace

Mile 11 - I decide that I'm power walking until mile 13. My legs are in agony, and my chest is starting to feel tight. I need salt. I know I need salt. There's Gatorade ahead, and I take advantage. I work my legs, by using more of my stride. I need to keep going. Why is my chest tight? WTF? I should maybe think about a medic tent, but they ask questions, and I am going to finish. Hey look! Oranges! They ran out of oranges at this stop last year, but they have boxes and boxes and boxes of oranges still. They're the best oranges ever. I don't even like oranges, but these oranges are amazing, and my chest stops feeling tight. It's the oranges. The oranges are magical. 16:38 pace

Mile 12 - Still walking. Don't care. Enjoying the sights. How did I not notice this huge wall along Bicentennial Park? How did I not notice this huge park last year? Man, I missed a lot. I should go back to the Pathway of History and actually visit it. I'm trying to keep my pace faster, but my legs are screaming. They're so tight. From my hamstring down to my calves. Are they cramping? Are they just exhausted? More Gatorade ahead. Yay! 16:03 pace
Done! Where are
the showers?

Mile 13 - Engine 9 was on an overpass cheering on the racers, and the train was still there, or maybe it was a different train, but he was still blowing his horn for us. That still brought a smile to my tired, sweaty, salty face. We've hooked back up with the marathoners. They're at mile 17, and they have so much more energy than the pack of half marathoners I'm with. We're all walking. We're plodding along, but an enthusiastic marathoner urges us to finish strong. It makes me smile. I think about running, but I know those demon hills are coming up. They were apart of the 5k course. Stupid hills. They have placed out amusing signs for these hills. They still make me laugh. I'm not going to run until I only have .1 miles left to go. My legs don't have a lot left in them, and I'm going to leave it out here. 16 miles run. This crap is no joke. 16 miles is a long, long way. 16:08 pace

Mile14 - Ok, so this is my .10 left. I pick up my pace. Move legs, finish strong. Act like you've done this before. Come on, that's it. There ya go. It's hot out here. When did it get hot? Just around the corner and you're done. There it is. No dumb arches. Just the finish. Hallelujah! 10:58 pace

So here are my official race results:

  • FINISH TIME3:08:33
  • EXPECTED TIME2:45:00
  • 5 KM39:43PACE12:47
  • 10 KM1:22:05PACE13:13
  • 10 MI2:17:44PACE13:47
  • PACE14:23
  • CHIP TIME3:08:33
  • CLOCK TIME03:57:51
  • OVERALL15584 / 18119
  • DIVISION1758 / 2013
  • GENDER9707 / 11696

These results are not nearly as impressive as the 5k one, but considering this was my longest run ever, I am not embarrassed by these. These are a base line. I can only improve from here.

After the race, my legs loosened up. I made sure to get more salt and stretch. I felt good the next day, if a bit stiff in my hips and feet. Nothing terrible or surprising. I can't believe what a better time I had at this race than last year. They were night and day experiences, and I'm so glad I got to run with my baby sister.

Oh before I forget, we got matching shoe jewelry!


Love! Ok well I hope you all enjoyed the review, and I'm going to be taking at least a week off before winging my training for a month or so. My next plan doesn't start until June 28th, but that's another post.

Cheers!

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