Run The Reservoir Half Marathon Race Review

This race review is brought to you by the letter “H”.  ”H” is for Hot, Hell, Humid, Hard, Hilly, Humbling and Humility.    I have officially achieved a new personal worst in the half marathon and I am now questioning whether I will be ready for NYC in November.  But let’s start at the beginning…

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On Saturday my husband took the little man to see his mother so I could rest up for the half marathon.  Well, that didn’t happen.  Neighbors were making a whole lot of noise and not even ear plugs helped out my situation.  No biggie, I can sleep at night.  Um yeah, that wouldn’t happen either.  Little man woke up at 10pm screaming and wouldn’t go back to sleep unless I was holding him.  I spent midnight to 5am on the couch in a half-sitting/half-laying position. Not that comfortable.

L and I woke up at 5am on Sunday morning, got ready and drove to my parents’ house.  The half marathon is right near their house so they agreed to hang with the little man while I was running.  I dropped L off and got to the start area with about 45 minutes to spare.  Parking and packet pickup were easy and around 830am, the runners were called to the start.

This is where trouble began.  The weather at 830am was around 75 degrees with 90% humidity.  I was already sweating but was happy it was at least overcast…for now.  The race was supposed to start at 830am but it didn’t, it started at 845am.  I hate when races start late.

With a ready, set, go, we were off.

Mile 1 (9:40) – I went out too fast and decided to slow down

Mile 2 (10:10), Mile 3 (10:11), Mile 4 (10:25) and Mile 5 (10:37)

The sun came out and it started getting really really hot.  The half was sponsored by United Water so each mile had a well stocked water station.  I drank two glasses at each aid station, I was THAT dehydrated.

As soon as you crossed the Mile 5 mat, the trail section of the half began.  For the next 2.5 miles, the run was over a loose, rocky trail.  Trail running is hard and my mile times definitely reflected that.

Mile 6 (11:23), Mile 7 (12:26).

Finally back on the road, I tried to get my stride back.

Mile 8 (11:08), Mile 9 (12:05).

Right after finishing Mile 9, I hit a wall.  The heat, humidity and sun were getting to me and my fingers and hands started to feel tingling and I was getting a bit nauseous.  Not good at all and I started walking.  If the race wasn’t a giant 13.1 mile loop, I probably would have dropped out at this point.

Mile 10 (12:37), Mile 11 (13:23).

Mile 10 and Mile 11 were around a huge field and in FULL SUN.  I felt like I was going to die.  At this point, I didn’t see any runner around me running, everyone was walking.  This race was getting the best of everyone.

Mile 12 (14:50), Mile 13 (14:12), .18 (1:55).

In the last couple of miles, I ended up running .2 and walking .1.  This was the only way I could get my body to move forward and finish this disaster of a half marathon.  I finally crossed the finish line in 2:35:15 for a minute mile pace of 11:51.   It took me over 43 minutes to finish the final 5k…not good at all.

After a couple more glasses of water and a banana, I got in my car and headed to my parents’ house.  I wanted to cry and I kept questioning myself about NYC 2012.  I don’t know whether to chalk this bad race up to just being a bad race or do I accept that NYC might not be in the cards for me this year? I’m not going to rush to any decision but I am going to overhaul my training program.  I will explain all that in another post.

The good news is that my 1st postpartum half marathon is now behind me.  I’m no longer nervous about the distance but I do have tons of work to do.  Getting back after baby is hard and with your lifestyle changing also, it makes it even harder.  I now have a time benchmark (horrible time benchmark) to work off of and I can only get better from here. :)

As for the Run the Reservoir Half Marathon, would I run it again? – Nope.  NJ in early September has horrible weather and the race didn’t start on time. I also didn’t like that a lot of roads weren’t closed and cars were whizzing by the runners.

Have you ever run a half marathon that you wouldn’t run again?



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7 Responses to Run The Reservoir Half Marathon Race Review

  1. Pingback: North Jersey Half Marathon Race Review | runbakerace

  2. Pingback: September Running Wrap-Up | runbakerace

  3. Danielle says:

    First off, good for you for not tossing in the towel!! Secondly–you are so right–everything you k we about racing or training changes post baby….it’s hard to find the confidence some days for me but I know I’m a better mommy for plugging ahead.

    As for not doing another half–I prob wouldn’t do the Worcester 1/2 again… It was hilly and in my opinion had logistical errors that make me say–yeah I think I will pass for next year.

  4. Pingback: 9 Weeks To NYC Marathon | runbakerace

  5. Katie says:

    I ran the race and it was my worst ever! Where do I begin?? I’ve never seen so many people walking at the end. Between the humidity, rocky course and random hill at Mile 12 I think (felt quite dizzy at that point), it was a nightmare. I’m running NYC as well and spent the better part of Sunday analyzing what went wrong. I think the weather, the “challenging” flat course and the blazing sun were all factors. November has to be better. Best of luck!

  6. Katie says:

    I ran the race too and its so nice to hear that I’m not the only one who felt this way. It was my worst half ever! I’m also running NYC in 2 months and spent the better part of Sunday analyzing my time. I’ve never seen so many people walking towards the end. The humidity and the hills toward the end were brutal. I’ve never felt so lightheaded toward the end of a race. November has to include better weather and crowd support for all 26.2. Best of luck!!

  7. Brittney says:

    Aww, that sucks that the race was so hot and awful. Good for you for sticking with it and finishing though, I think that’s pretty inspiring. I’m gonna guess that all those factors just caused you to have one bad race, and that it doesn’t mean you can’t still have some good races, including NYC if you still want to do it. I’ve been lucky that most of my race days have always been good, but I’ve had my share of awful training runs, and definitely questioned my capabilities based on those. I think it’s kind of a crapshoot based on all sorts of factors…

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