Based on my pre-training and what I did at Miracle Miles, plus my little/big injury, I thought I'd start conservatively with a 10 minute mile. This was my longest race, with Miracle Miles being second longest at 15k.
The weather was perfect at about 45 degrees, much cooler than the hot training days I had. We arrived at Lake Eola about 45 minutes before the race started. I drove there bundled up, but left the car with my shorts and a long and short sleeve shirt on. After about 30 minutes of warming up, I was able to take off my long sleeve shirt and placed it under a tree, next to other runners clothing to keep it company.
I lined up at the 10 mile pace sign and even though I planned the 10 minute mile start, I felt like I was going too slow. The crowd was pretty thick for me to go any faster without weaving in and out too. I played it safe the first few miles, but was glad to see by mile 3 I was already below a 9 minute pace without much effort. I wasn't even planning to reach that pace until the half way point.
Everything was going very smoothly. I didn't feel any discomfort and my IT band was not even a thought. Occasionally I would body sense and relaxe my legs, which helps greatly to relieae any tension I tend to hold in my inner thigh (abductors).
At the 2.5 mile mark I passed a coworkers house and was happy to see her standing there in her winter jacket and bedtime sandals cheering me on. I had to wave at her cause she seemed lost looking into the waves of runners
Around mile 5 I heard some lady runners talking and one of them asked "Does this make me look fat?". I had to lough out loud at that one.
I thought I saw my wife's cousin around mile 9. I was a bit confused to see him there and I think I confused him cause I made eye contact with him and waved smiling. I found out later it wasn't him. Maybe I was going delirious :)
There were a few times I thought my legs were getting heavy, but then realized I was going up some minor incline. After those, it was smooth and easy again.
At mile 10 I started to pick up the speed and started the interval timer on my watch, which was set to 2 minutes followed by 1 minute. I did 2 minutes faster and a slower 1 minute. After doing that for mile 10 and 11, I was getting side stitches so dropped down the intensity a bit, which you can see in my times below.
Overall I was very happy with my pace and time and can't think of where I could have done better. I might switch my intervals though and do 1 minute fast, followed by 2 minutes normal pace.
These are my splits for the 12/4/2010 OUC Half. I meant to split at 13 miles and didn't:
I averaged an 8:26 pace and finished in 1:50:36. You can find me at number 63 in my age group. Looking at the final stats, I calculated I came in the top 40% for my age group 30-34, which was 63 out of 149 runners. 37% for male overall with 431 out of 1153 runners. 26% overall with 607 out of 2308 runners. Not bad for my first half. I'll probably work on my speed a little more with some interval runs and try to get rid of those side stitches.
Lastly in this post, I'd like to thank my company for having flex time that allowed me to fit in extra morning workouts and to come in to work a little later than usual (I did make it up at the end of the day). And my wife for allowing me to use up part of our weekends for those long runs.
Next stop is the Disney Half this January 8th, 2011.