Sunday, March 25, 2012

Rock CF Half Marathon Recap

Today was an awesome day!  
Short story: half marathon PR by 11:17 :)
Time: 2:22:36
Pace: 10:53
Age Group: 50/64
Overall: 699/834
Feeling: LOVED IT and felt strong the entire race physically and mentally

I ran this race last year and really liked it.  It's held on the small island of Grosse Ile where we essentially run the perimeter of the island.  I first read about it in Runner's World last year and contacted the Race Director, Emily.  She's 30, suffers and Cystic Fibrosis, and is doing amazing things to raise money for research for CF.  She puts on a great race and today was no different.

I got up pretty early, got to the island in time for a good parking spot, picked up my packet with ease and was ready to rock and roll.  I ran into some friends and chatted it up to kill time.  I also briefly saw Megan and Stephanie, which was super fun!  I met Stephanie last year at this race and it was great to see her again this year, pregnant belly and all :)  of course, I didn't take any pictures...

Right on time we were off and I was working hard to reign it in.  I wanted to keep the first few miles in the 11min/mile and then plan to pick it up a bit each mile until 11 where I'd take off.  The beauty of this race is that it's as flat as a pancake.
We run hills ALLTHETIME in our running group so it's incredibly rare to run on flat land, which was nice.  I felt GREAT, kept it reigned in, and followed my loose plan perfectly.
I was impressed by the water stations - every 2 miles throughout the race.  I skipped the first one as it was less than 2 miles in and I didn't feel like I needed it and then at mile 4, I passed the water on accident and then there was only powerade offered.  I'm not a big fan of any liquid other than water while I'm running, so I passed again and waited until the 6 mile water station to get a swig.  It worked for me :)

As we made the turn on the north end of the island and ran back south on the west bank, I was gradually picking it up and feeling great.  What I loved about this race is that I kept my head in it the entire time and felt great physically.
I fuel with cherry sports beans on the run and carry them in an old mini m&m container.  It's perfect for carrying my race fuel, keeping it handy and popping the top as needed to have a couple on the go.  It's so much easier than the plastic bag they come in.  The down side - to other runners - is that it rattles like a maraca the entire race.  My running buddies are totally cool with it as they are used to it, but in races, I always wonder who I'm annoying as I go.  Either way, it's a great conversation starter :)

As the mile 11 and 12 markers came and went, I kept picking it up and when the finish line was in sight, I TOOK OFF!  I've never had a 'kick' before in any race, so this was nice to pick it up at the end.  I saw a friend of mine and his wife as I was coming around the final part on the HS track and picked it up faster than I ever had before.  I had known since mile 10 or so that I'd PR no matter what, but once I crossed the line and looked at my garmin, I was ecstatic!  PR by over 10 minutes :)
The medal is really cool and overall, I LOVED this race.  It is definitely a race I'd like to do each year.  I do have family that live on the island and I head straight to their house after the race for a delicious home-cooked breakfast :)  Does it get any better than that??!!  NOPE!
Now it's R&R with compression shorts and socks  :)  Only 5 more weeks until my next half!


  1. Yikes - 11 minutes!!!!! that's awesome! No wonder you love this race speedy! Nice job! I like the medal. Much nicer than last years.

  2. Wicked PR. Congrats! I'm so doing this race next year (you sold it with "flat as a pancake"!

  3. Very nice job. I ran this race as well, and agree with you that it was a well run operation. Congrats on the PR, perfect course for it.

  4. that is so awesome, congrats on a huge PR! Glad we got to see each other for a few. I love this race as well - such a great course. i'm definitely planning to do it next year too

  5. WOW!! Great job Rose! A PR by over 11 minutes is fantastic!

  6. I couldn't believe out of all those people at the start line that I saw you! So awesome. Too bad we didn't get more of a chance to chat.

    The medals and shirts were much nicer this year.

    I noticed your Garmin says 13.21. My friends had the same distance, my dad's had 13.23 and I had 13.30! so techincally, we ran slightly faster! :-)

    Congrats on the PR!!!

    1. Yeah, I figured I don't run the tangents and add on more distance. But I like the way you think about how we ran faster :)

  7. If you think that was flat, you should train with ME. I thought the course was a little too hilly yesterday ;) They weren't huge hills, obviously, but there was enough of an incline to make my feet feel heavy. It's fun to read someone else's perspective of the same race.

    CONGRATS on your awesome PR and such a great race!!

    1. Bummer I missed you but, yes it is funny to read someone else's take on the same race. It just goes to show you you're only racing against yourself and you're all in your head :)

  8. Grats on the PR! 11 minutes is fantastic. I really enjoyed the course, running the water was great and the weather was perfect. As a side question, how are you able to pull the individual elements out of your Garmin results page?

    1. After my garmin uploads automatically to the training center, I upload it online at There, I can pull up different reports and take a screenshot of them. Good luck.