Sunday, December 7, 2008

The City of Angels Half Marathon

Time for my last race before Houston - the City of Angeles Half Marathon!  I was hoping to beat my performance in SB - here’s my brief wrap up. 

Early morning...5:00am, ate some cereal, out the door by 5:30.  Parked at the LA Music Cent

er downtown, and was on the shuttle bus to Griffith Park by 5:45 am.  Sleepy.  Arrived at the zoo a little after 6:00....almost an hour and a half till race start - bummer!  Got my bib, ran into my good friend Kai from the trail runner’s club.  Started the race in the first wave - the 5:00-9:00 group.  Why not?  Kept good pace, but really needed to pee by mile 2 - so I had to spend 30 or so seconds in a porta-potty.  I was pretty pleased with my splits early on, and was worried about the hills impacting this, but I just shortened my stride, chugged up at about 10:00-10:30 pace and made it up on the downhill.

I started to get pretty tired around mile 10, but with just 3 

miles to go knew I had to keep it going!  On a steep hill at around 10.5 I actually walked for a few strides - not good!  Immediately got dizzy, so resumed running, slowly.  Good choice.

After mile 12 I really had no idea where I was at with my goal.  My goal for Houston is “officially” 4:30, but I’d really like to go for 4:20 if possible.  For that to happen, based on the McMillian calculator I’d need to pull a 2:03 half.  Now that’s averaging about 9:30/mile for 13 miles - pretty ambitious for me honestly.  I did know I was somewhat within that range, but the last half mile or so was in a tunnel!  So I had no GPS to tell me where I was at.  I did smell blood and really put the pedal to the metal that last stretch.  

I passed dozens of people in the tunnel and crossed my fingers the finish line was real close at the “light at the end.”  It was a few hundred yards around the corner, I again sped up as fast as I could - I saw the clock had just ticked 2:03 so I knew I was right in the pocket!  Crossing the line was great - I made it a point to make funny faces for all the photographers.  Stay tuned for those.

When I looked down at my Garmin I realized I had met my goal with near perfection.  Crazy - it read 2:02:59.  I was biting my nails waiting for the official results and was pleased that I was even a second quicker.  Took a nice long nap upon arrival at home....Next stop Houston.  Then I think I’ll try and break 2 hrs in a half early next year!

Here’s some boring technical data...

Official Time: 2:02:58 (pace average = 9:28/mile, HR average = 172)

Mile 1: 9:08 (HR = 152)

Mile 2: 9:38 (HR = 160)

Mile 3: 9:22 (HR = 166)

Mile 4: 9:19 (HR = 171)

Mile 5: 9:16 (HR = 172)

Mile 6: 9:44 (HR = 174)

Mile 7: 9:44 (HR = 176)

Mile 8: 9:23 (HR = 177)

Mile 9: 9:00 (HR = 175)

Mile 10: 9:46 (HR = 180)

Mile 11: 9:27 (HR = 178)

Mile 12: 9:31 (HR = 180)

Mile 13: 9:32 (HR = 186)

End HR = 194 (!)


1st half: 1:01:19

2nd half: 1:01:32

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Gut Check and News

It’s been an interesting 10 days.  Earlier this month I spoke with the Houston Marathon about showing “Running for my Father” in its hometown.  It’s on!  We’ll be showing the film several times preceding the marathon at the Expo in January.  (Details coming soon!)  Given this, I’ll be running Houston again. (!) I’m knee deep in training, and after my surprise performance at the SB Half I’d decided to try to and push it as hard as I can.

My cousin and I went backpacking last weekend...and it didn’t go so well.  Thankfully we had a happy ending, but it involved being rescued from the top of Mount San Gorgonio (11,499 feet) in a blizzard with the wind chill bringing the temperature down to -29’!  Long story short, my cousin Josh and I owe our lives to the San Gorgonio Rescue Team.  If you’re on Facebook you can read the whole story here...(btw, the pic at the top in the middle is me the morning after the blizzard rolled in...)  Also...the article written about the rescue...

Anyway, on Sunday my schedule called for 15 miles.  The fires in LA made the air absolutely unbreathable.  I paired up with my friend Billy (who had a 20 miler scheduled) who snuck me into his gym, where we proceeded to run for about 3 hours on a treadmill!  Miserable, but I ended up doing a “progression run,” where I go faster and faster throughout the run.  Arduous, but good for the training.

Today I went out on one of my many tempo runs... (warm up, go fast, cool down.)  I had 3.5 miles at tempo pace (the go fast part.)  After my 2 mile warm up I was feeling really crappy - the legs were not working...probably still recovering from my 15 miler.  After some thought and some advice from Billy I decided to give it a go.  .4 miles into the tempo part I ate it.  Big time.  Tore open my knee, elbow and hand.  Gnarly - pics of the hand and knee above...  Was this my excuse to stop?  After I washed the wounds in the nearby drinking fountain I decided to see the run through.  I got home after the run and felt good about myself.  Another run in the books, despite some obstacles.  Houston...60 days away!


About Me

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Film composer moonlighting as a runner, cyclist and triathlete