Wednesday, April 11, 2018


I can't believe it has been FIVE years since I last ran this race! Crazy. In 2013 I had a great race and ended up with my first sub 1:40! Looking back, it was actually my second ever half marathon. So much has happened since then! Anyways, I'm looking forward to going back. I had been meaning to do this race just about every year since and even signed up once but had to give my entry away to Alejandro. Finally, I'll be back in Corvegas and ready to rumble!

Thankfully the half marathon doesn't start until 9:30am. You hear that all other races? Quite the reasonable hour! Unfortunately, since Corvallis is nearly 90 minutes away, I'll probably be leaving around 7:30am or so. Still, could be a lot worse. The weather for race day isn't looking so great. Right now it is predicting showers and mid-40s for temperature. I'm sure it will be fine once we get going, but waiting around in that and the first mile or two might suck. Saturday is supposed to be dry and low 50s. That would have been perfect. There is still time for the weather to shift, but even if the forecast stays the same it shouldn't be too terrible.

When I looked up the course for this year I thought "Wow, it's almost exactly the same as five years ago!" until I realized we are actually running the course backwards from when I first ran it. So that will be interesting. The good news is that the finishing three miles now are generally downhill. Not much, 110 feet down over three miles, but hopefully enough to make a difference. Otherwise, the major climb remains in about the same place, halfway through the course, just going the other way. 140 feet over 1.2 miles. Not too terrible, much better than Shamrock, that's for sure. There's another hill of 100 feet over 1.5 miles, but not too much later after that. Hills of any significance are done after mile 9.

One of the major differences is that the race will START in Reser Stadium instead of end inside of it. It ends on the road right outside. That's kind of a bummer. It was fun to run down the ramp into the stadium and cross the finish at the 50 yard line. I'll miss that for sure. Don't know why they couldn't run us back into the stadium to finish. We're right there! And obviously accessing the stadium isn't an issue if we are starting there. Whatever. It'll be fun to be back either way.

As for my goals.. I am still not entirely sure what I am capable of. I know what a half pace should feel like, I just have no idea what pace that will be come race day. I did just do a tempo run last week and ended up at 8:36 over three miles. I'm pretty sure I can't maintain that pace over ten additional miles. The question is, how much slower do I have to go? Back in the day my half pace was usually just a hair higher than my average tempo run, so I'm right in that Holiday Half territory I believe.

"A" Goal: A new PAPR (post-arthritis PR)! This would be 1:56:33, or 8:53/mile or less. On a good day, I know this is possible. This would be pretty sweet and encouraging. My focus since this race has been building miles, not getting faster, but still, I feel like I should be faster after five months!

"B" Goal: 1:59:59 or less. Gotta be in "ONE"derland. This is 9:09/mile or less. I'm going to be pretty disappointed if my time starts with a 2. I was really feeling it during the Holiday Half and maybe Corvallis won't be my day, but dammit, I need sub 2.

"C" Goal: 2:06:17 or less. This is 9:39/mile. If I can't beat my Miami time from January then I quit running.

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