Monday, June 24, 2013

Slacker Half Marathon

I ran the Slacker Half Marathon on June 22, 2013.  I had a great race.  A PR of 1:26:28, taking almost 5 minutes off my previous PR of 1:31:16 in 2010 at Mickleson Trail, SD.   I got 2nd in my age group and 18th Overall and 18th male.

Slacker has always been one of my favorite races, it is so much fun. This was my 4th slacker.   From Loveland Ski Area down to Georgetown.  2500 Feet of Elevation drop from 10,800 down to 8,500 Feet.  I have not raced it since they paved the bike path where it used to be trail, it made for a faster course.   It was just a perfect day, all the way around.  No wind, sunny but not too hot, I was feeling good and got into a fast pace and held it the whole way.  I was aiming for a 1:30 (6:52 pace), but felt good running closer to 6:30 pace.  When I reached mile 9, I felt I was going to break 1:30, so anything else was gravy, so I pushed a bit and passed a couple of people.  I was expecting to slow down some, but it never happened (unlike the Platte half).  Mile 12 was my fastest mile, with a 6:11 split.

I thought a sub 1:30 would get me an age group podium finish, but I was surprised to get in the top 20 overall.  When I got to Bakerville a course marshal pointed at me and said 21.  I didn't know what he was talking about, since the watch time was close to 40 minutes.  Then I heard him say 22 to the person behind me and realized I was 21st.  How could that be, there were so many people ahead of me on the bike path around mile 1.  I had cruised through them.  After that I passed a couple on the frontage road and then the same guy was at mile 10 in Silverplume, pointed at me and said 19.   A guy passed me at the water station and I never passed him back, was gaining at the end but he finished 3 seconds ahead of me.  We passed 2 runners on the way to the finish.  1 guy ended up being in my age group and got 3rd, only 30 seconds behind me.
Feeling Good on the Frontage Road at Slacker Half

Start of Slacker, Loveland Ski Area.  Running downhill and into the sun on a great Colorado Summer Day.
It was one of those special days where everything clicks and feels so good.  Dennis Likes this.

I gave Kate Bjerke a ride to the race.  It was her first half marathon and her 2nd race ever (a 5k before she had children).  On the way up we saw two big horn sheep battling on the side of I-70 on the shoulder of the road.  I've never seen that , that close before.  Amazing, you could hear the horns crashing as we drove past.   We got to the race really early, got our bibs and on the bus with no problems, got there with over an hour before the race starts, which is the way I like it.  While we were standing around talking, I saw Diane, from the somewhat picked team a couple of years ago.  She recognized me and then the 3 of us hung out before the race, her first race since having a baby last year.  It was fun sharing the experience of Katie's first race, she ran a 2:08 and her family met her at the finish.   Diane ran a 2:01, we waited at the finish for Kate.

Slacker Mile 12 Just before Georgetown, still feeling strong and new it was a PR day.

After the race I was so happy.  One of those rare moments where you surpass your best expectations and feel so good about everything.  I enjoyed the post race and the podium for that brief few seconds I was up there, you never know when you are going to get that back.

Slacker Finish.  1:26:28, so Happy to Break 1:30 and have a huge PR

Garmin Watch Data for Race

Slacker Half Marathon Results

2nd Place in Age Group, on the podium with a medal.  What a great day.

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