Who is Ted?

I'm the father of two beautiful daughters and an amazing wife. For fun, I enjoy the long hours of seemingly endless suffering that endurance sports (mostly running, cycling and triathlon)provide. During my "down time" I'm an avid beer snob and self-described gourmet chef (in other words I like to burn things on a stove or grill).

Saturday, December 1, 2012

2012 Rock Canyon Half Marathon Race Report

The RCHM runs along the Nature Center Bike Path from City Park to the bottom of the Reservoir and back.
 Don't let the title of this post fool you.  I am writing a Race report, because technically, this was a race.  That said, I did not "race" today in any traditional sense of the term.  This is because I have been working on the Maffetone training method which requires that I keep my heart rate (bpm) below a certain aerobic threshold (in my case around 140).  Today that was quite a challenge, but I managed to do just that for the most part.  The race also set the stage for continued training and endurance development during the next 3 months.  I felt great the entire race, and I know I'm ready to start slowing extending the amount of time that I'm out running in the coming weeks.  It's been a while since I've done this format for a race report, but I'm going to do it as a top-five countdown.
A look at my HR throughout the race. 
#5- A new personal record (sort of): Note that it says personal record, not personal best.  In fact today was the slowest half marathon I have ever done.  In a funny way, it was rather difficult to do this.  There were numerous times where I would have liked to just take off, and pick up the pace, and at times I had to check myself as I would notice both pace and heart rate creeping upwards.  I've set a goal to just go out and enjoy a race in the past, but I usually wind up chucking that approach and racing anyway.  But today it was kind of cool that I didn't.  Here's hoping all of my restraint on the trail today, will pay dividends down the road in a few months.  The other thing about running slower was that I really enjoyed the run and relished in each moment of it.  Usually towards the end of a race, I start to count down the miles and tell myself that there's only a few more to go.  I start to focus more and more on getting to the finish line.  That wasn't the case  today.  I just kind of rolled along through the each of the miles and before I knew it, the race was almost done.
Garmin Training Center Data
#4- A well run event:  On the way to the race this morning, I figured out that this was the fourth time that I've run this half-marathon. It also happened to be my third half-marathon this year.  The mark of a well-organized race is probably that you don't even really think about race organization before, during, or after the race.  That's how it was today.  I didn't think about the quality of the event, the course, the aid stations, etc, because they were all done well and with no complications.  I've done about a dozen events this year, and been in attendance at two others, and this one was among the top three as far as organization goes.
#3- Extra energy:  Today when I finished the race, I felt absolutely fine.  I'm a little sleepy now, but I think that might have more to do with the 2 beers (Belgian Black Porter, very good!) that I enjoyed at Shamrock's post-race with my Irish Biscuits.  I had so much energy in fact, that when I got home, I took my "new" bike down to the store to buy groceries for dinner.  It's nice to run an event like this and not feel so completely spent at the end that there's no energy for anything else!  I'm looking forward to "stretching" my endurance in the next few weeks as I contemplate the CPTR for May (more on that idea later).
#2- Camaraderie:  I normally don't take a race to be a fully social event, and I've gone to so many races by myself that I often don't interact with many of my fellow runners. Today, as I was taking my time, I had many opportunities to visit with other runners.  I was also able to do a lot of "people-watching" which is always entertaining at a race.   Even better, there were six of us from the family that ran today, plus many friends and acquaintances.  Pretty cool to see how many folks we know that embrace the running lifestyle!
Finisher's Medal
 #1- The Weather:   This was the best part of the race simply for the fact that conditions for this race were absolutely miserable a year ago.  I normally wouldn't rank weather as my #1,  but in 2011, the weather was literally the "polar" opposite of today.  Last December we ran with temperatures in the upper teens to low twenties and a brisk wind that was saturated with snow which blew sideways across the race for nearly the entire time.  Much more of an ordeal.  There are times when a snow-filled run can't be beat and it certainly makes one feel like a bit of a bad-ass to be out in the elements, but the contrast today was nice too.  It was a great treat to be out there today in warm weather, running in shorts and a t-shirt to boot!
This was a great way to start the month of December off and I look forward to doing this race again (although I don't know if it will be next year or not?).

Final Results: Closer to the back of the pack but still ahead of the nearly 6 billion people on earth that didn't even show up to run today.

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