Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Lowcountry Trail Half Marathon Recap and Future Plans

"The more I train, the more I realize I have more speed in me." - Leroy Burrell

Not much has been happening since my North Face race in late September.  I recovered well from the race, and I was back running within a couple of days.  Two weeks after the race, I decided to run in a half marathon.  Just to be clear, my first love is ultra running and that is what I focus on. I don't run many races shorter than the 50k distance; however, I was lucky enough to win a free entry into the inaugural Low Country Trail 1/2 Marathon on Johns Island and couldn't pass up the opportunity to run in a new area.  Plus, this race gave me the chance to see how fast I could run a trail half marathon. Since this was a last minute decision to run this race, I had not done any half marathon specific training but figured I might be able to finish in a decent time.

After a brief warm up on the course, I quickly realized that the course was going to be slower than I thought due to thick grass and sandy trails but nonetheless I wanted to go out hard.  After coming through 2 miles in 11:30 I knew I wouldn't be able to sustain that pace but I still continued to run hard without holding back.  Naturally the part of the course in which we ran twice was the most difficult due to the thick grass. There was also a lot of twists, turns and roots which made me slow my pace down - but I wouldn't expect anything less from a trail race.  I was ecstatic to see 1:23:19 when I crossed the finish line.  All in all the course was awesome. It was well marked with every mile noted with a sign so you knew where you were on the course at all times.

Going out 'balls to the wall' for this half marathon made me think about trying to run a fast 50k. Being so close to Charleston I think the Mad Marsh 50K would be a perfect course to set a fast 50k pr.  I am hoping I can find the right balance of speed work and mileage over the next couple of weeks to put a good race together. I have come up with a plan, and pending any injuries, I think that I'll be able to achieve my goal.

Beyond that, I am thinking about running in the Lookout 50 miler in December. I heard it is an awesome race to compete in.  I think I am most excited about the Delirium 24hr race in February. I am intrigued by the thought of running for 24 straight hours to see how many miles I could log in that time frame.  I will be making my decisions about what races to compete in for the remainder of the year and early next year very soon. I look forward to testing my new strategies and seeing what this 29 year old body of mine can do.

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