Sunday, September 14, 2008

Run #84 Race Report: Chicago Half Marathon

Date: September 14 at 7:30 am
Place: Jackson Park (like 5 minutes from home, YAY!)
Mileage: 13.1 miles
Time it Took: 2:55:36 (official chip time)
Pace: 13:25
Miles this week: 19.1
Miles this month: 22.1
2008 Goal: 486.37

Thoughts/Comments: I will add more to this later, but to those of you who have not experience the rain that we have had in Chicago for the last three days, I'm not sure if I will be able to adequately explain what it was like to run in the driving, pouring and windy rain for 3 hours. I'll write more later, it's been a long day.

Ok, so I didn't lay out my clothes and gear the night before. Not sure why, other than the thought that "I've done this so many times, how can I get it wrong?" I get up nice and early, around 5:30, still contemplating what time I should leave, since the race start line is only about a mile away. So I get ready, only to find that my favorite long distance Wigwam socks are nowhere to be found....Oh there they are! IN THE WASHING MACHINE. I can't run in wet socks now, can I? (Ah, life's funny little way of foreshadowing.) So I threw the socks in the dryer and figured 20 minutes should be fine.

So I leave the house and drive about 3/4 mile up the street and park. I wasn't about to walk in the rain. Who wants to be soaked even before the race starts? (Ah, life's funny little way of foreshadowing.) During this short drive I get phone calls from Lou and Sheena (I work with her). So off I go to the start line. It was raining but not too bad. The race field was PACKED. Wait, is it raining out here? Aren't some of your basements flooded? I met up with Lou after a few phone calls of "I'm right behind the 2:20 finish sign (wishful thinking)" and "Do you see the guy waving the purple umbrella?" Sheena called and said she couldn't make it through. While standing in the field of runners, I realized that #1) Forgot my i-pod. and #2) Forgot to charge my Garmin Forerunner and it was dead before it even found a satellite. (Note to self: Prepare the night before. Even if you don't think you need to.) Nice job, Lindy.

And we're off! The start line was right at the Statue of the Republic in Jackson Park, which is a bronze replica only 1/3 the size of the French original. Purty gal, ain't she?
Miles 1 through 5: I feel like complete crap. Puddles. Stepping. Squish. Squash. Legs aching. Knee. What. The. Hell. Am. I. Doing. Out. Here. Lou kept asking me "you ok?" and I felt like I was slowing her down. Some idiot, as in every long race, says "Only 11 more miles to go!" BITE ME. Around 3 miles I saw Jill, a friend and fellow runner cheering along side the course! So we come out of Jackson Park and do a short turnaround loop on South Shore Drive, pass a street sign that reads "LAKE SHORE DRIVE", and I hear some guy (also running) saying to his companion "I wonder when we're going to get on Lake Shore Drive." He says "No we're not." And I said "Yes we are. We just looped on South Shore and when we turned, we came onto Lake Shore Drive." He said some crap about the outer drive, and I'm all like what is this guy talking about? Look at a course map, fool! I don't know why I was so annoyed and irritated. Maybe b/c it was pouring down rain. Maybe b/c I was having trouble keeping up with Lou? I don't know. Around this time, I relieve Lou of her duties and sent her on her way, as I decided to walk for a few (more) minutes.

Miles 5 through 9: The rain was no longer bothersome at this point. I was wet and there was nothing that was going to change that, other than finish the race. So I just ran and when I felt like walking, walked for a minute or two at a time. Jill was out there again, standing in the rain, waiving and cheering like a maniac! Me like screaming maniacs that yell me name.
The field was thinning out here in the back. I see some skinny chic shuffling along with some big ol dorky headphones (??) and then as I come up along side of said dork, IT'S SHEENA!!!! So we chatted a bit, and shared a few words of encouragement, and then I went on. Next I came across MM, Lou's main squeeze. (LOL...I used to love it when the Fonz would introduce his #1 chic as his "main squeeze"). Now what in the heck he was doing back here, as his pace is a 7:30, I knew something was not right. He was running with his cousin in his first half marathon race. Awww, cute. But I guess his cuz' had a tough go of it. I left them and went on my way. YES! THE FIRST AND ONLY TIME I CAN SAY I PASSED A 7:30 RUNNER!
The turnaround wasn't far ahead now, so I started looking for the Lou-ster on the other side. When I saw her, i screamed my head off and she waved and asked if I saw MM. I hooked my thumb over my shoulder and pointed to those two losers behind me. HAHAHAHA I'm kidding.
Miles 10 through 12: Once I hit 10 miles I knew I would finish, and under the course 3:00 time limit, but it would be close. Since the marathon on May 4th, this was my highest mileage to date, but oddly, I was feeling ok. Not great, but ok. It's always weird to me when the body and mind stop protesting the insanity of a long run and just go with the flow. I like that "zone." During these miles, there were still a few stragglers on the other side of the course and I noticed police and buses picking people up. Damn that! That lit a fire under me and I picked up my pace to a wild-n-crazy 11:55 or so. I figured, as long as I make it back to The Museum (in the South Shore neighborhood "The Museum" is the Museum of Science and Industry and the last major turnoff street,) they can't make me get on that bus! So I hustled it on up to 57th Street and breathed a sigh of relief.

Miles 12 through 13.1: I'm gonna finish! I'm so undertrained, but I'm still gonna finish! As I turned I approached the 63rd street beach in all its familiarity with many morning runs having started there, I knew how close the finish was. Keep. Going. Keep. Going. YOU GOT THIS ONE. There was Jill yet again!!! Crazy girl, don't you know it's RAINING OUT HERE? So I turned the corner onto Hayes (63rd Street), that finish line seemed a long way. And I made it across.
4th half marathon. PW (Personal Worst), though this same half marathon last year was my PB (Personal Best). I dont' care, I'm glad that I finished under those awful conditions and questionable training readiness. It's not an excuse for my performance, it just.....IS. It is what it is, ya-know-whut-im-sayin?
The moment I stopped running I was cold. Shivering cold. I was soaked to the core. In the only moment of doing something right with my gear, I had my cell phone in a ziploc bag. I caught up with Lou and we shivered together under a tent while we waited for her people.
The icing on the cake was the medal. Below is a picture of last year's medal on the left, next to this year's medal. You probably wouldn't remember, but last year I blogged about the crappy crackerjack box prize they dared to hand us as a medal!
p.s. As of yesterday (Wed), my shoes are still wet.


Roisin said...

Touchez, Lindy, touchez! But still...that was the wettest, drippiest, most miserable walk/bus/train ride home ever!

Lindy said...

my shoes are still completely soaked. what a miserable run. but dammit all who had the guts to show up and run are officially HARDCORE!!!!

Lou said...

I need more information... and I think almost everyone showed up. Maybe like 4-5K didn't. I was expecting 10K not to show.

Jaime said...


Lindy said...

I will do a race report by tomorrow. I just pulled 2 all-nighters in a row with a short 3-hour nap. However, 500 cookies baked, decorated, packaged and delivered. DONE!

Yay for me!


Brown ButtahFly said...

Hey Lindy (aka B-Kay)

It's me Miss V from EP, I found your blog through Summer's blog. how have you been? YOu continue to be an inspiration, you and Summer. I don't know how you did it in the rain, but you did and I'm proud of you. I will also save your link in my blog so I can visit frequently. I guess I can consider myself back from my vacation, I let life get in the way of my runining goals but I'm back to continue on, take care.

Jaime said...

where are you? its been a while since you posted

RBR said...

Nice job powering through crap weather and the highest mileage to date on your knee! I still would like to see the medal. Is is it better? worse? Inquiring minds want to know!

I am sorry about Chicago. Maybe you can do the Pig again?

Betsy said...

Ooh, I have advice for you! Crumple up newspapers in wet running shoes and wait overnight. The next morning, they will have dried out.

Probably they've dried from the rainy half marathon, but for next time!