Read the pace chart included in the Rock 'n' Roll New Orleans guidebook:
The whole thing - marathon and half - started at 7. As we covered the first mile, well BEHIND the sag wagon, we (briefly) considered throwing in the towel. The police were re-opening roads, and the only way we could find the course was to follow the trail of discarded sweatshirts and gloves. I tossed my feather boa on the road, having already cast aside all hopes of this being a fun run, and ran flat-out. With the roads re-opening, we either had to catch the pack or call it a day.
But the wave starts took a long time, and we knew we'd catch up with the walkers by mile 2 at the latest.
I flip-flopped between emotions. Confusion. Fury. Despair. Acceptance. Fury. Defeat. Humor. Fury.
(Do you notice a pattern here?)
Then I rounded a bend, and the walkers were in sight.
We crossed the 1-mile marker. I looked at my watch: 7:16.
Not only was I going to have a 3-hour half marathon time on the record (I resigned myself to clock time at this point) but I was going to blow up spectacularly by the end...
All those rules:
- You can't "bank time" in a race.
- You shouldn't go out too hard, you'll regret it later.
- Keep your pace steady and work on negative splits.
My 7:16 first mile of the course... the Rock 'n' Roll group thinks I ran it in 62 minutes. (My splits for the race are hilarious.) But I know I ran it in 7:16, and I would pay for it later...
... or would I?
(more to come, including a "real" race report, when I'm recovered from the race, 3-hour drive back home, and the day's calorie deficit.)
Do you have any "so late you might as well have stayed home" stories? Please share and help me feel better about this fail.
*Two points of note: 1 - Our hotel was less than a tenth of a mile from the start. We dropped by to watch the elites take off, went back for one last "potty break," and returned to find that everyone left without us! 2 - There was 1 other page in the booklet that listed a 7am start time, but the pace-group wave start timing chart (page 14 of the booklet) was so detailed, we never even saw the "marathon and 1/2 start at 7am" note on page 8. At least we weren't alone in our confusion! Our fault? Their fault? Both? You decide...