Yesterday was the Carlsbad Half Marathon, and I had a good race. My previous best half marathon time was 1:53:52, and it was also done at Carlsbad. This is a good race for a PR since it's flat (see elevation below) and the weather is usually perfect - a little chilly. This year I set a new PR, 1:48:12 which is more than 5 minutes faster!
I'm very happy with that performance for a number of reasons:
- I was nervous about PR'ing because I hadn't run well in the weeks leading up to the race
- I kept my heart rate lower than in my previous PR
- I am 25 pounds heavier than I was when I set my previous PR.
- I negative split a running race, possibly for the first time ever!
Having a lower average HR means I was working less, and I could tell. I was getting pretty tired - but I never had that "oh shit, I want to quit" feeling. It was definitely a struggle - but a controlled one.
The body weight is also impressive. Not that I've put on 25 pounds (how the hell did THAT happen?) but that despite that handicap I was able to run faster. The research says that every pound of weight roughly equates to 2 seconds per mile. Using that as a guide, I should have been running 50 seconds per mile slower. I in fact averaged 8:16 min/mile, which is 25 seconds faster per mile! This gives me hope, because it indicates that I am a better runner now than I was two years ago, and I know the extra weight will come off.
On top of all that I negative split the course! I never do that. I typically go out too fast, die, then limp to the finish line. My splits yesterday are below, if you want to see all my data (I can't imagine why you would), it's all online in Training Peaks. You'll note that the elevation is horrifically inaccurate - that's because I ran with a Garmin 310XT which is known to be a huge P.O.S. when it comes to elevation. Stick with your 305's people.
On top of my own performance, KT also set a personal best (and qualified for New York!) and the weather was perfect for a run along the ocean. We said 'hi' to a lot of friends in the finisher's area, including my coach who was just as excited as I was! Aside from a little nipple chaffing, ok a LOT of nipple chaffing, it was a pretty good day. Now I'm off to find my cycling legs again!