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Great South Bay Half Marathon Recap

 

Time to talk about Saturday’s half marathon! I could hardly wait to tell you all about it. In fact, my mind was busy during the race taking note of the key points necessary for us to discuss so let’s get to it!

Great South Bay Half

How cute is the donut medal?!

Pre-Race Early Morning:

I leisurely ate breakfast around 5:30 am, drank water and coffee while perusing the internet, catching up on blog reading and ordered some new accessories for my Erin Condren notebook.

pre-race breakfast

I had a bowl of oatmeal with some peanut butter mixed in and brought the banana, packet of peanut butter and gels with me to race.

I noted that I was not at all nervous or thinking much about the race other than just being excited to get moving (Friday’s rest day can do that to me).

It was the coldest morning since June (49 degrees) and WINDY. Yikes.

Race Arrival:

Easy ride (like 20 minutes from my house), plenty of parking right at the start line which was basically the same exact area as the finish line, lots of porta potties.

I had over an hour until the start (they said to plan to arrive at 7:30 am so in usual fashion, I was early) but it was fine since I was able to wait in my car.

I ran some warm up laps but can’t really say it amounted to much other than letting me know I felt great and ready to run!

It was a misty rain outside leftover from the week of storms but nothing to complain about, the wind was more of the issue.

weather

The race literally ran along the water (hence Great South Bay Half Marathon) for the entire course. We got really lucky that the weather held up enough to not flood the route at high tide!

Great South Bay

What I ended up wearing: I wore what I planned only I ran with the Lululemon rain jacket on the entire time since it was misty, chilly and windy and made the last minute decision before leaving the house to wear my Pro Compression marathon socks instead of the low trainers to keep me warm, and in the event of rain and puddles, keep my lower calves from getting wet and cold.

Pro Compression

The race was set to begin at 8:30 am which is a late run for me. I had about half of my banana (no peanut butter) 45 minutes before the race so that I didn’t get hungry and put two Hammer Gels in my pockets.

The Race:

There were no pace corrals; it was a pretty informal start line which I was not expecting.

I positioned myself sort of towards the front of the pack but not really the front but I don’t think the middle <- great description right here.

I started out knowing it would be tight, telling myself not to push too much ahead and to just go with the crowd.

The first few miles held steady and comfortable. The pack opened up fairly quickly and I held with a few men for the first half of the race pretty consistently.

I can’t really say if it was windy at this point or even raining as I had my rain jacket on with the hood up and zipped tight framing my face.

I grabbed water from almost every water stop even though I didn’t really feel like I needed it. I promised myself that I would never skip the first water stop in a race again so I was really conscious of grabbing that first cup.

I started one Hammer Gel around the 4.5 mile mark, taking little bits every so often.

The first half of the race or so really went by quickly and the miles were totally uneventful. I was happy with my pace.

Around mile 8, we reached a turnaround point where, in my head, I said, “Okay, it’s now a 5 mile race, pick it on up!”

Uh huh, well, at that very same moment, the turn around brought us directly into the wind which stayed like a force against my face for the remainder of the race.

This is where I say out loud Uh huh again.

splits

I know I did the best that I could but my pace was dropping as clearly evident in the splits.

Was it the wind? Yes, for sure it played a part, but I really hate to blame it on the wind.

Another reason I believe that my pace dropped in the last half of the race was because I was kind of running on my own. I broke ahead of the guys from the first part of the race and was settled into my own little section of the route. I found this to be a problem because having more people around me helps to pace me and keep me moving quicker.

On my own, I was struggling to pick up the pace and, instead, I was forming my own comfort zone pace which felt much faster than it was (maybe that was the wind’s fault?).

I opened another gel around maybe the 9 mile mark? Not really sure. Maybe I had half of it.

MapMyRun chimed in my ear at the 13 mile mark to say 1:44 but its tracking was slightly ahead of the race course mile marks.

The actual last .1 of the race was so windy but I pushed as hard as I could, I swear it!

Official time: 1:47:42 (not adjusted which IS JUST NOT NICE!)

I like to think that my MapMyRun timing was accurate somehow which did put me right around my goal of 1:45.

It would have been awesome for the official time to be 1:45 but it wasn’t and that’s okay.

The race flew by in a jiff (do people still say jiff?) and I felt stronger during this half marathon than I have in a few years.

Um, donuts at the finish line…

Entenmann's Donuts

Overall thoughts:

I would absolutely choose to run this race again. I have always wanted to run this half, it just never worked in my schedule due to falling on the Jewish holidays or my son’s birthday (his birthday is tomorrow!!).

Fun fact: My father used to run this race when I was kid and he still talks about it as his favorite race course. By the way, he once finished LAST for this race but I can no longer joke about that. Finishing a race is a really big deal, no matter how slow or fast you go. It’s never easy and it’s a huge accomplishment.

As for my finish time, it’s my second best half marathon to date (I have run 8 total half marathons).

I like that my first 7 miles were really consistent. I normally start out faster which is something I tried to keep myself from doing and was successful. I actually wanted to start out even slower but I didn’t so there’s that.

I feel that I tapered really well for this race. My legs felt fresh and ready, not fatigued at all.

What’s next?

Of course I have the race bug full force at the moment. Although another half marathon is what I currently searching for as I type this post, I am not seeing any local until January. I did find a 10K for November so I have a feeling I will be registering for that race! I do like a 10k, more than I used to actually.

Thank you to everyone who reached out via comment, email and instagram wishing me luck and checking in to see how the race went. You guys are the best 🙂

Saturday's half marathon recap! #greatsouthbayhalf #racerecap #running #halfmarathon… Click To Tweet

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How was your weekend? Who else ran a race? A long run? Any run? Tell me about it!

Least favorite weather condition to run in? Definitely the wind!

Best thing you ate all weekend?

 

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  • Jessie October 5, 2015, 6:01 am

    Congratulations Mama! You did fantastic. I think it’s very special that your father used to run this race as well. It’s like a race you pass down in the family. Perhaps one day your son will do the same? 🙂

  • Lisa @ Running Out Of Wine October 5, 2015, 6:29 am

    I hate runs like that where the wind hits you at the halfway point! You still did awesome and the first part of the race really shows that you are in PR shape. You should definitely run another one soon!
    Lisa @ Running Out Of Wine recently posted…Route 66 Marathon Training Week 9My Profile

    • The Cookie ChRUNicles October 7, 2015, 8:47 am

      Thank you! I think so too. I felt real good in the beginning, the pace felt comfortable enough to maintain. I am looking for a local half, I just don’t see any!

  • Susie @ SuzLyfe October 5, 2015, 7:23 am

    Here in Chicago, that is pretty much the story of our lives, and so I just about always plan my runs out to go into the headwind first. Obviously you couldn’t do that here. BOO. Also, not adjusted? That’s a bummer. But at least you had a good, strong race and got donuts!
    Susie @ SuzLyfe recently posted…Chicago is a Splash Zone and Headache Induced RestMy Profile

    • The Cookie ChRUNicles October 7, 2015, 8:46 am

      I so hate running in the wind! Worst weather condition for me when it comes to running.

  • Gretchen | Gretchruns October 5, 2015, 7:53 am

    Great job Meredith! That stinks about the wind, especially for the final few miles. I did my last long run yesterday and I had the same situation of heavy wind at the end. I hope I won’t have that during my race..I might cry! Way to hit your goal!!
    Gretchen | Gretchruns recently posted…Weekend Recap: Happy OctoberMy Profile

    • The Cookie ChRUNicles October 7, 2015, 8:45 am

      I hope you don’t have the wind either for your race. I hate running in the wind.

  • Michele @ paleorunningmomma October 5, 2015, 8:42 am

    If I’m not running a fall marathon this sounds like a great half! I like running along the water and my first marathon was along the Jersey shore. Worst conditions for me are definitely sun and heat. I hate waiting for a race to start in the cold, but I run those races so much faster.
    Michele @ paleorunningmomma recently posted…NYC Marathon Training Week 12 RecapMy Profile

    • The Cookie ChRUNicles October 7, 2015, 8:45 am

      I am so behind on comments and with the site screwy for the last few days, I can’t even tell if I responded to this one of yours lol. This was a great half, I definitely think you should plan to run it if you aren’t training for a marathon. I much prefer the fall races for the cooler weather, for sure.

  • Jamie October 5, 2015, 9:11 am

    No long run over the weekend – decided to be crazy and run 15 on the treadmill Thursday… cray cray. Best thing I ate – pizza obviously! Congrats on a fabulous race… running in the wind is no joke. Hope you have a fabulous Monday! 🙂
    Jamie recently posted…The Rain Can StayMy Profile

  • Amanda @ .running with spoons. October 5, 2015, 9:54 am

    I’m glad that the weather was okay for you and that you ended up having a good race! I was totally thinking about you Saturday morning and hoping you weren’t drowning in torrential downpour 😛 I have to agree about the wind, though — definitely the worst weather to deal with.

    • The Cookie ChRUNicles October 5, 2015, 2:07 pm

      So sweet of you to think of me and text to check in on me. I am rather glad I didn’t have to deal with downpours and the wind. That would have been too much for me!

  • Sara @ Lake Shore Runner October 5, 2015, 10:31 am

    Way to go Meredith! I honestly think wind is the hardest weather element to run in. I would take rain over wind. Way to go! Your race recap makes me want to start running/racing again but I know I still need to give my body a break.
    Sara @ Lake Shore Runner recently posted…Friday Favorites: TGIFMy Profile

    • The Cookie ChRUNicles October 5, 2015, 2:06 pm

      thank you 🙂 The wind is the worst if you ask me! You will know when it’s time to come back to running, in the meantime, you are loving spinning and enjoying your workouts.

  • Alyssa @ RenaissanceRunnerGirl October 5, 2015, 12:07 pm

    Congrats on your finish! I was wondering how it turned out for you Saturday with the drizzles still coming, but even though your overall pace climbed, you handled it well. I did my half-on-a-whim yesterday and the weather was PERFECT, but unfortunately I was not feeling so great. I did find it really fun to run a half in my hometown, just wish my stomach wasn’t giving me trouble!
    Alyssa @ RenaissanceRunnerGirl recently posted…Ridgefield Pamby Half Marathon Race RecapMy Profile

    • The Cookie ChRUNicles October 5, 2015, 2:05 pm

      Ugh, that’s terrible to not feel well, I have to go read your recap ASAP

  • Shannon October 5, 2015, 1:33 pm

    So glad the weather was [somewhat] decent for you, and you were able to run it!
    Shannon recently posted…Very Vegetable SoupMy Profile

    • The Cookie ChRUNicles October 5, 2015, 2:05 pm

      thank you, I really can’t complain. I felt great and the weather was fine enough to run the race. We are lucky it wasn’t canceled with the crazy weather we had been having.

  • Sarah @pickyrunner October 5, 2015, 2:16 pm

    So glad you’re pleased with how the race went!!! You did a fantastic job and I’m really glad it wasn’t cancelled and that the conditions were okay… minus the wind. Plus you ran a fantastic time. I would run any race with desserts/dougnuts at the end. Except I’m never hungry after a race so I’d probably hoard them for later.
    Sarah @pickyrunner recently posted…Training 9/27-10/3My Profile

  • Laura @ This Runner's Recipes October 5, 2015, 2:26 pm

    Congrats on such a strong race! You ran in that wind so well and should be proud! I’m really glad that the storms held out and you were able to race.
    Best thing I ate this weekend was a the bagel after my race. A hot toasted plain bagel with cream cheese is extra, extra delicious after a long run.
    Laura @ This Runner’s Recipes recently posted…Managing Race Day Nerves {Marathon Monday} + Portland Training Week 18My Profile

    • The Cookie ChRUNicles October 7, 2015, 8:40 am

      Thank you 🙂 The way you describe that bagel makes it sound so heavenly. Glad you enjoyed it!

  • Ash Diamond October 5, 2015, 3:31 pm

    Huge congrats on a great race! You did wonderfully considering the wind and weather! I’m hoping the weather holds for Brooklyn RNR this weekend!
    Ash Diamond recently posted…Virtual DateMy Profile

    • The Cookie ChRUNicles October 7, 2015, 8:39 am

      The weather is looking decent for Saturday, am drizzle I think? I wanted to run RNR on Saturday but it wasn’t working out for me this year. Best of luck to you! Let me know how it goes

  • Suzy October 5, 2015, 8:01 pm

    Ahhh I was hoping that wind would have gone away for your race. That blows. Ha! K but seriously, the wind is the worst race condition everrrrr and yes, go run another one pronto! In a jiff. You’ll kill it.
    Suzy recently posted…Anxiety: Part Five of a ZillionMy Profile