Janesville Half Marathon Race Report

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This topic contains 11 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by  ed 11 years, 6 months ago.

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  • #6642

    Peter
    Member

    Since there seems to be a plethora of race reports today, thought I'd add mine. The race was a goal of mine back in May when I decided to sign up and run Twin Cities marathon, and the date was 22 days before TCM, so I thought it would be perfect timing. I ran a lot of miles (averaged 61 per week the past 12 weeks) and I wasn't really tapering for this race (63 miles this week). I had an idea that I wanted to run about 6:20 pace and see if I could hold up. The course is somewhat hilly, with a bunch of rolling hills on the outskirts of Janesville. The weather could not have been more perfect, with temps in the mid 30s at the start and around 45 at the finish. I had what I would call an atypical warmup, with a normal one mile jog, followed by a keystone cop like series of unfortunate events where I locked my keys in my van while getting dressed and read to go to the line (as they were calling us to the start line on the PA). So with no watch, I quickly tied my shoes and tried to put out of my mind how in the heck I was going to get my keys out (my wife was at work 30 minutes out of town and could not be contacted until after 11:00 am – it was now 8:00). I got to the line, said hi to my friend Tim who could be the best Master's runner in Janesville if he'd ever train seriously, and waiting for the start.

    At the start 1 guy took off like a shot (he ended up winning and ran 1:08.xx), and everyone else just kind of slowly ran down the road. I said goodbye to Tim and decided I needed to start working. Of course I didn't have a real good idea what pace I was running, I still thought I was a bit slower than my goal pace. A little after passing the one mile marker, I heard footsteps quickly approaching me. As the runner came up to me, I said “Don't mean to be rude, but can I ask what pace you're planning?” He said he didn't know, 6:10, 6:15, 6:20 or so… Well he quickly gapped me, so I let him go, but tried to match him and keep him in sight. There was no one else even close to us. I only glanced around when we went around corners, and I never saw anyone, and proceeded to run the last 12 miles all alone. Without a watch, it felt just like a Saturday morning tempo run (with 5 water stops  and traffic controlled intersections :P).

    Ran up the large 1/2 mile hill that started @ mile 5, dodged a golden retriever @ mile six, saw my daughter's cross country team manning the waterstops @ miles 8 & 10 (my daughter? she was off in search of a bathroom :o). I did ask the boy's CC captain as I ran by to call my son and have him bring spare keys to the start/finish line after 9:30. I noticed the guy in 2nd (dressed all in orange, so he was easy to spot) started getting a bit out of reach, so when I got to 10 I started to see if I could make any headway on him. I never really got any closer, but I figured I was about 90-120 seconds behind him. I still had no idea what my pace and time was, b/c there were no splits anywhere on the course. So imagine my surprise when I came to the finishing chute and saw the clock @ 1:21! My response was “Holy Mother of God!” My finish time was 1:21:21, which if the course was accurate, would be a 6:13 pace. However, several people told me they measured the course via GPS or bike odometer, and it came up to 13 miles. So lacking the certification, I'll most likely consider it a 13 mile PR (my 1/2 PR is/was 1:28:30). However, the time and effort was great, and I'm super psyched for TCM in 3 weeks. I placed 3rd overall, and the orange runner of course was 45, so I placed 2nd in the 40-49 AG and 3rd overall in a small field of 101 runners.

  • #23732

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    Peter, good run. It sounds like you put in a great preparation for TCM with this run. You must be excited about your potential for three weeks from now.

  • #23733

    sueruns
    Member

    I ran it in 2003, imho the course is more than .1 short.  I'd add a minimum of 2 maybe 3 minutes considering the hills.  I remember Chris R winning with a 1:09 and he was ecstatic and a few of us said we thought it was short and some guy said he measured 12.6

  • #23734

    cesar
    Participant

    hey peter  pretty good race, given the fact that it seems that you were running alone for most part of the race , good good race, i am glad that you raced by effort and it seems that it payed off pretty well. congrats on your race!

  • #23735

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    Sue, I was also there running it (ran with Laura Clark-Taylor, just wanted to run a half on the anniversary of Jamie collapsing at the 12 mile mark of a half marathon) in 2003 and I remember the course being quite short, like finishing within about 1/2 mile of the 12 mile marker. That's why I recall asking Peter some time if they fixed this issue. He seemed pretty confident of the distance, though as I recall he couldn't remember any changes to the course. Peter, did the distance seem correct?

  • #23736

    Peter
    Member

    I felt the course was fairly accurate through 10 miles. I thought the 11th mile seemed short. But again, without a watch, I couldn't get a real good gauge on it. I did measure the course in 2 different ways:

    1) on this site https://www.gmap-pedometer.com/ and came up with 12.94 miles

    2) I drove the course the day before, and my car odometer read just shy of 13 miles

    And my friend measured it on his bike gps, and had 12.97 miles. If I wouldn't have locked my key in my van, I would've worn my GPS watch and got a reading. The 10k I ran on 7/4 measured 6.15 on my GPS watch, and I know that course is very accurate.

    So my best guess is somewhere between 12.9 and 13 miles. If they'd move the start back 1/8 of a mile, I think they'd be fine. I'm not going to obsess over it, since this wasn't a goal race, but I plan on contacting the race director to let him know that many who have run the race in the past believe the course to be short, and runners would rather have an accurate course than a short (fast) one.

  • #23737

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    They must have done something since 2003, then. Whatever the case is, it sounds like it wasn't as far off as when I was there and the most important thing is that you got a good run and a good measure of fitness in. Hopefully, the RD will heed your advice and adjust the start/finish as necessary.

  • #23738

    sueruns
    Member

    I just looked up the results of 2007 race.  Looks like they fixed the course last year. 

    shows winning times:
    https://web.archive.org/web/20071014194956/http://gazetteextra.com:80/halfmarathon091307.asp

      1:08 and 1:26 are very doable by the winners, if not slow for Rebecca.

    https://web.archive.org/web/20071014205829/http://gazetteextra.com:80/halfmarathon091607.asp

    Ryan- it was more apparent in 2003 that it was short, not because of course difficulty (I've run that fast a Paavo), but because i remember the conditions as BRUTALLY sticky.  I was 3 miles out on a cool down and worried I wouldn't be able to walk the 3 miles back.

    I remember Laura saying something about stopping at mile 12 for a short prayer.  You see, I brushed your greatness years ago!!! ;D

  • #23739

    sueruns
    Member

    Peter-

    that means we're expecting a 2:45 marathon from you!!! 8)

  • #23740

    Ryan
    Keymaster

    Sue, I thought it was apparent because it seemed like we stopped at the 12 mile mark, then a half mile later we were done. Sure, mile markers could be a bit off but nothing seemed that off.

    I remember Laura saying something about stopping at mile 12 for a short prayer.  You see, I brushed your greatness years ago!!! ;D

    Or the other way around…

  • #23741

    Peter, I'd like to add my congrats to you with the rest of the forum. Great work on the run, I'm sure all the hard work will pay off in your up coming marathon. Keep up the hard work it always pays off. Ski

  • #23742

    ed
    Participant

    Awesome job – short course, long course or accurate – you held a good pace and felt great doing it.  All this considering the mind game being thrown off by the keys, watch, etc . . .

    My money is on an exceptional TCM race by you.

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