First half marathon diary: The race has been run!

Happy Monday!

Saturday was race day. Before then...

Oh boy. It's really real now. #rocknroll #savannah #halfmarathon #running

A photo posted by Josh Shear (@joshuanshear) on

Anyway.

It was fun, and that's about what I have to say about that. The video has a lot more in it. Some notes:

Time. I trained for 2:20 and came in at 2:21:12, in the top 4,000 of about 25,000 registered. So, right where I expected.

My friend Kelle, on the left there, ran 15 half marathons in 2015 to recover from an injured foot. More accurately, she got her boot off in February and finished her 15 by the first week in November, so basically eight months of running races. Photo by her hubs, Glenn.

My friend Kelle, on the left there, ran 15 half marathons in 2015 to recover from an injured foot. More accurately, she got her boot off in February and finished her 15 by the first week in November, so basically eight months of running races. Photo by her hubs, Glenn.

Weather. When I finished it was about 75 degrees with humidity hovering around 90%. It was hazy through most of the course. Apparently this was hotter than they expected — they wound up shutting this down early. In race PRSpeak, that's what they mean when they say they "diverted runners along the course." That is, they diverted them to the finish early. I really didn't think it was so bad out; I'd been training in 90-plus percent humidity all summer with another 20 or more degrees on the thermometer.

Water issues. The water stop at the halfway point (in the half) stalled me for a full 45 seconds. There were lots of cups out, but no water in them. By the time I got to the water station around 9.5 miles, they were out of water, and were handing out ice cubes. I wound up carrying a paper cup full of ice in one hand and a handful of loose cubes in the other hand for a good half mile. I guess if there's a next time, I'll carry my own water, much as I hate how that feels on my shoulder.

Overall experience. I had fun. For as challenging as the training was, and as challenging as it was running in a crowd the whole way, it was a fun race. I'm not sure I'd want to travel for a race unless I really knew what I was doing in the location. Maybe I'll make this one an every year or every other year event.

More:

» A runner died during the half. He was 35. The family didn't want his name out there, and we don't know any of the circumstances surrounding his death. I saw three people in ambulances between miles 11 and 12 and another five runners down along the route, so I suppose it shouldn't be too much of a surprise we lost someone.

» UPDATE: A second runner died after getting home.

» You may have already seen this floating around Facebook, but one of Savannah-Chatham's finest helped a runner across the finish after he fell a couple hundred yards shy of the finish line. An EMT cycled behind them and helped him immediately after he made it across.

What's next for my running. While, like I said, I found running with the crowd difficult, I did enjoy the distance, so I'll keep a few long runs a month in my repertoire. I'll likely set a goal for 2016, like 1,000 miles, or something along those lines.

What's next for the running diary. It will go on hiatus until there's something new to say, so probably for the rest of the year — but it'll be back when I'm ready to log some miles again.

Sweaty Josh picture of the week (I'm the one in red crossing the finish line):

IMG_1273

First half marathon training diary, the last few steps

These are the last few steps of my final training run before race day Saturday. Couple of slow 4-milers this week (lots of traffic, actually, so fast four milers, with lots of 30-second breaks), and now we just have to not get hit by a car for 40 hours or so and we'll be ready to roll! Thanks for being here with me the last five months. More after the race! Full journey here.

First half marathon training diary, Week 22

Happy Monday!

Hooray for taper week. Really. I needed the break. We're now under a week until race day. We'll have a couple of jaunts of four or so miles and then...well, it'll be here. We have a nice relaxing day with friends on Friday, and we'll line up with the 2:20 folks as the sun is coming up on Saturday, and off we go for a couple of hours.

I haven't decided exactly which I'll listen to during (and yeah, I realize there will be plenty of music on the route), but I have a few Joe Rogan podcasts lined up. Maybe I'll save the one with the iceman, Wim Hof.

We'll see you on the other side. Good luck to all y'all who are running alongside us.

Links

Me on Runkeeper
More running diary
Rock 'n' Roll Savannah
Training schedule

Stats

Miles logged last week: 18.57
Time logged last week: 3:08:45
Weeks until race: 1
Weight: 146

This post is brought to you by Shroom Tech Sport, my pre-workout of choice. No caffeine, no shakes, no weird warm feeling coming over you. Just some extra drive to get you through.

Sweaty Josh picture of the week

12191854_10153782386214923_1725672682509825633_n

First half marathon training diary, Week 21

Happy Monday!

It was a physically taxing week, getting the rest of the furniture into the new place and such, but still managed to keep race pace for a 13-miler on Saturday, and really wasn't quite four minutes slower for the week over last week. I do need to clean up my diet for taper week and race week, but that'll be easy enough now that we're in the new place and not driving back and forth at least once a day, trying to squeeze in meals (and sleep) where I can.

I made the final long run before race day as close to race day as possible, sending a backpack to work with my wife, getting up at are-you-kidding-me o'clock, riding my bike to where we'll park our bikes, walking to the start line, and getting started, well, about 15 minutes before race time. I didn't run the course, but I did get distance and time.

Links

Me on Runkeeper
More running diary
Rock 'n' Roll Savannah
Training schedule

Stats

Miles logged last week: 26.41
Time logged last week: 4:28:22
Weeks until race: 2
Weight: 149

This post is brought to you by Shroom Tech Sport, my pre-workout of choice. No caffeine, no shakes, no weird warm feeling coming over you. Just some extra drive to get you through.

Sweaty Josh picture of the week

IMG_1379
Had a chilly morning this week, we did!

First half marathon diary, Week 20

Happy Monday!

Well, with a visitor in town over the long weekend, we kinda ate a bunch of junk food, but I ran faster and managed to maintain just under 150 pounds, which is my goal for race day. The move is almost done, I have one more long run before the race, and I'm excited to hopefully just cruise on toward race day!

Links

Me on Runkeeper
More running diary
Rock 'n' Roll Savannah
Training schedule

Stats

Miles logged last week: 26.41
Time logged last week: 4:24:45
Weeks until race: 3
Weight: 149

This post is brought to you by Shroom Tech Sport, my pre-workout of choice. No caffeine, no shakes, no weird warm feeling coming over you. Just some extra drive to get you through.

Sweaty Josh picture of the week

12115982_10153761501159923_1323964219141197398_n
One of my favorite local beers for recovery. Who cares if I finished running at 10:30am?

First half marathon diary, Week 19

Happy Monday once again, friends!

On we march. I skipped a rest day this week, but I'll make up for that over the weekend. I made sure I kept my long run to the scheduled 12 miles, though. Best run of the week was four miles that felt like a light jog but came in under 38 minutes, which is about 75 seconds faster than race pace.

We're also in the process of moving, so my resistance training this week has been lifting boxes instead of weights. Things feel a little different, but we're doing all right, apparently.

With the prescribed 20-week training schedule, I would have a taper week this week and then it would be race day, but I started early enough that I'll get a couple of 13-mile runs in and get comfortable at race distance, and then a taper week.

Hope you enjoy your week!

Links

Me on Runkeeper
More running diary
Rock 'n' Roll Savannah
Training schedule

Stats

Miles logged last week: 26.18
Time logged last week: 4:30:31
Weeks until race: 4
Weight: 149

This post is brought to you by Shroom Tech Sport, my pre-workout of choice. No caffeine, no shakes, no weird warm feeling coming over you. Just some extra drive to get you through.

Sweaty Josh picture of the week

11219679_10153743950079923_5888598099198371833_n

First half marathon diary, Week 18

Happy Monday once again, friends!

Well, this was an odd week...I wound up having to buy new sneakers, which is awful five weeks ahead of a race, but they're nearly the same as the ones that my toes finally poked through. It was really humid early in the week, and my 6-mile run really was terrible (I actually stopped after 2.5 miles and had a little heart-to-heart with myself and went out and ran another 3.5).

Then Saturday came. I got out early to try to beat the majority of the rain, and I planned what was supposed to be a 12-mile route really poorly. At 10.5 miles, I realized I either had to start running around the block, or just extend it, so I went ahead and extended my route, finishing at 13.2 miles — just a smidge past race distance, and I finished in 2:18:41, almost exactly at my predicted race pace, which was to be 2:20. So, we'll get a couple more in, but I'm comfortable at the distance (I still managed to do some laundry and work a full day afterward). Yay!

Links

Me on Runkeeper
More running diary
Rock 'n' Roll Savannah
Training schedule

Stats

Miles logged last week: 27.29
Time logged last week: 4:48:04
Weeks until race: 5
Weight: 151

This post is brought to you by Shroom Tech Sport, my pre-workout of choice. No caffeine, no shakes, no weird warm feeling coming over you. Just some extra drive to get you through.

Sweaty Josh picture of the week

12118887_10153735806664923_2156903833354218443_n
Gak! Did I accidentally run 13.2 miles?!

First half marathon diary, Week 17

Happy Monday once again, friends!

Well, last week I thought I'd jumped in speed, and while my shorter runs this week were slower than last week, my long run was 31 seconds a mile faster than last week. I'd been finding my long runs dropping by a few seconds a mile every week, but this was a big jump, and I actually wound up averaging about 5 seconds faster on the week than I did last week.

This was my final scheduled recovery run. My mileage will fall off by a couple of miles for the rest of the training, and my rest will increase. I will have a week that I'll be moving my training up a day, so I may get a short 1- to 2-mile run in so as not to rest three days, but if I do a lot of walking (likely), I might just skip it.

We're 6 weeks out from the race, and I'm getting excited for it, starting to plan the month leading up and the day. I'm thinking, as I write this, that I should change my long run routine a little bit, so that it mimics race day a bit. Right now, I get up, get dressed, pack a bag, drink some water and coffee and take a pre-workout, drive about a half hour and get out of the car running. Race day will be more like a 5- or 10-minute drive, but I need to be parked 90 minutes before race start.

Anyway, onward! Have a great week!

Links

Me on Runkeeper
More running diary
Rock 'n' Roll Savannah
Training schedule

Stats

Miles logged last week: 28.88
Time logged last week: 5:05:16
Weeks until race: 6
Weight: 153

This post is brought to you by Shroom Tech Sport, my pre-workout of choice. No caffeine, no shakes, no weird warm feeling coming over you. Just some extra drive to get you through.

Sweaty Josh picture of the week

9-26-run

First half marathon diary, Week 16

Happy Monday, friends!

Something got into my legs this week. I was on the road 24 minutes and change less than last week, while my distance was only down 0.14 miles. And that's while missing a day off.

I did eat a lot more carbs this week than normal. I've started having a peanut butter and banana sandwich (or two!), and I'm eating more rice. I wonder if that had something to do with speed and stamina.

This was the first week that when I finished my long run, I had some muscle cramping. It was the first time I crossed the 11-mile mark, and the first time I crossed the 2-hour mark, and maybe I have to remember to cool down and stretch a little more than I usually do. Normally I just have a Gatorade and get on my way.

Anyway, 11 miles, and I feel like if you told me I had a week, I'd be able to push out another couple of miles. Onward!

Links

Me on Runkeeper
More running diary
Rock 'n' Roll Savannah
Training schedule

Stats

Miles logged last week: 28.41
Time logged last week: 5:03:05
Weeks until race: 7
Weight: 155

This post is brought to you by Shroom Tech Sport, my pre-workout of choice. No caffeine, no shakes, no weird warm feeling coming over you. Just some extra drive to get you through.

Sweaty Josh picture of the week

12011282_10153702268474923_1744573537190510390_n

First half marathon diary, Week 15

No video this week. We'll get back to them next week, though!

Happy Monday, friends!

Great week. Now that I've acknowledged my 5-6 miles problem, I made some mental preparations to deal with it. And then I changed my route for my 10-miler at the end of the week and it went really well. I don't know when the last time I ran a sub-9-minute mile, but my recovery run was much faster than normal.

My schedule changes the next few weeks to accommodate work and the holidays, but I'm going to aim to keep a rest day before my long run. It means I lose a rest day this week but gain one back in two weeks.

Links

Me on Runkeeper
More running diary
Rock 'n' Roll Savannah
Training schedule

Stats

Miles logged last week: 28.55
Time logged last week: 5:27:16
Weeks until race: 8
Weight: 156

This post is brought to you by Shroom Tech Sport, my pre-workout of choice. No caffeine, no shakes, no weird warm feeling coming over you. Just some extra drive to get you through.

Sweaty Josh picture of the week

2015-09-12 13.13.58