In short-the Lawrence Half Marathon was a great race all around. Challenging yet fun.
In long-we headed to Lawrence with Stephanie around 6:30ish. It was such a nice, easy drive down K10 to get to Haskell Indian Nations University where the race started and finished. The weather was slightly cool as we headed to the start. I wore shorts, a short sleeved shirt with a long sleeved shirt over it (a throw away) and some gloves. I think the temp was around 52 degrees at the start with the sun starting to rise.
As we headed to the porta potties there wasn't much of a line yet. We noticed they were decorated. Decorated porta potties? Yep-from the sponsors. Something I haven't seen before. Since I had my choice, I went into the one decorated in pink-from some runner girl company. Inside it had balloons (pink and white), they had pink stickers galore, kleenex, an extra 4 pack of t.p., hand sanitizer and air deodorizer. If you can make a porta potty fun...this was it.
As we lined up, I kissed Doug and left him and Stephanie about midpack as I trapsed to the back of the pack. I think the race got started on time as the horn sounded. On a side note-they did not have chip timing and I think it took me almost exactly a minute before I crossed the start line and was off running.
The course was beautiful. Lawrence has some amazing older houses that we ran by along with the cute excentric houses such as the purple house with the purple fence with a flower garden painted on it. We ran through town, down Mass St (the main drag in Lawrence), through parks and up through the Kansas University Campus. Now that is one amazing place. The buildings and halls are stunning along with the tulips that were in full bloom today in the warmth of the sun.
The course was challenging with a lot of hills including Mount Oread at mile 4. I call it the Holy Hell Hill. A smart thing they did was to have a water stop placed at the bottom of the hill so I grabbed my water and took a short walk break up part of the hill. Once I topped the hill I could see the whole world. This was the most spectacular part of the course.
It warmed up more then it has on any run I've been on in a long time (actually since January at the Disney World Marathon). It didn't seem to be much of a factor for me and I faired pretty well. At about mile 7 I realized I had been running pretty well and steady. At this point, I determined I was going to try to finish up the rest of my miles under a 12 minute per mile pace. I kept a very close watch on my Garmin and did just that! Whoo Hoo!
Mile 01 11:10
Mile 02 10:44
Mile 03 10:52
Mile 04 11:22
Mile 05 11:50
Mile 06 11:07
Mile 07 11:01
Mile 08 11:04
Mile 09 11:31
Mile 10 11:47
Mile 11 11:46
Mile 12 11:44
Mile 13 11:57 -Thanks for running me in Steff-otherwise I may have seen a 12 minute mile!
I averaged an 11:24 and my Garmin recorded 2:29:42. I'm sure my official race time will be around 2:30 or 2:31. I'm happy with my time-considering mom being in the hospital and I had not been eating right (or really-eating at all). After the race there were all kinds of post race goodies: chocolate milk, orange juice, yogurt and tons and tons of homemade brownies, cookies, muffins and so much more-it was a great spread. While I had some oj and choco milk, we waited to see if Jenny placed and she did-2nd place in her age group! Way to go girlie! Doug finished in great time but I think he was a little disappointed as he didn't meet the goal he set for himself. I'm certainly proud of him. He's really bumped up his intensity of running lately and is doing great. Steff also had a great run. After Jenny received her bling we stopped by Chipotle to get our free grub-another great goodie from the race.
All in all...a great challenging race, great weather, great volunteer support (tons and tons of volunteers), beautiful course and great grub afterwards. I'll be looking forward to completing this race again next year.