My cold came and went in three days. But it only stayed away for one. Then back for two very fluish days (last weekend), a slow recovery and a couple of 8M runs on Wed & Thurs to try to get myself in some sort of condition for the Half Marathon I was signed up for today.
I didn't actually feel fully recovered even Thursday, but my runs went well and I was pretty confident I could maintain an 8:00 minute mile pace for my goal of 1:45. I knew sub-1:40 was out of the question, even fully healthy, since that would require running a 7:30 pace; which is about what I did at the two 10K runs I ran in the last month. And those were real struggles!
But I also remembered that often Olympic racers in various events do surprisingly well when coming off a layoff. And we have a saying that too much tapering is better than too little. So I felt pretty confident, but hardly doubt-free.
The race also gave me a chance to see Ronny & Lori's new house and spend some time with them. And they ran in the race also.
I came in 14th overall (out of 208), first in my 50-54 age group, finishing in 1:38. My pace was almost exactly 7:30 (the flat, fast course was about a quarter mile short of a true half-marathon). After running the first two miles at my planned 8 mile pace I found my speed picking up to around 7:20. I tried slowing down, but 7:20 felt good so I decided to give it a go. I still took my five planned brief walking breaks.
At 7:20 I was blowing past folks from mile 3-13. The last two miles were really hard, but that's what you expect. In my 10K four weeks ago, at the same pace, the last four miles were really hard. So, if I stay healthy, I should be able to qualify for Boston (I need a time under 3:45) at the marathon in three weeks.
Ronny finished in 2:13 and Lorelei in 2:32, which are pretty good efforts considering they just started training seriously about two months ago.
This was only my second half-marathon. The first was in San Diego, 1999, and was the first time I had ever run such a long scary distance. My time there was 1:42 or so, but it did have a big hill at the end.