So, today was the last race of my season, the Chicago Monster Dash Half Marathon–fun race! I put everything together last night, put my chip on my shoe, my bib on my shorts, and gathered all the other gear I’d need for the race. I put my clothes at the foot of my bed, along with both sets of shoes, my runner’s and my beaters for after the race (I really need to get a set of sandals for post race, note to self for next season.)
I got up this morning at 5a, got dressed, had my coffee, and small bowl of cereal for breakfast and was on my way. I left at 530, getting to Soldier Field to park, at just about 730. The start time for the race was 915, so I had just shy of a couple hours to kill.
Spent a few minutes in the parking garage, changing my shoes, and making sure I had all I needed from the van, which is when I realized I forgot my sunglasses, ugh, always something, right?!?!? LOL… I got everything else together, and wandered over to the start area. When I got there, there were only a few people there, mainly because it was an hour and a half early! The band, Mike And Joe, was setting up, doing sound checks, and basically teasing us with 30 second song bytes… I waited to do gear check till later, because it was still cold, it was about 45 when I left home, and didn’t get much warmer till later on into the race.
So about 845, I took off all the hot gear I had on, and did gear check. Then started my warm up routine. At about 905, they called for all HM runners to enter the starting area. Start was pushed back almost 15 minutes, I think I heard them announce they were waiting on clearance from CPD or something, I dunno; I was having fun looking at all the costumes around me. I, of course, went as a runner! I KNOW! GREAT COSTUME!! RIGHT!?!?!
So, start came, at just before 930. I crossed the start line and felt really good. The field was pretty small, <10,000 runners, so it thinned out QUICK. We ran a lap around the start area block, then out to lakefront path. I felt pretty going out, my knee started to hurt a little just before halfway, but nothing too crazy, like it did at the Marathon last month.
It really started hurting about mile 8. I hung in there a while, kept running, but had to start taking a walk break every now and then. My new shoes felt pretty good, I went up a half size, so my toes didn't take as much of a beating. Only complaint, is my fault: I should have ran in them more before the race… I only had about 10 miles on them before the race this morning.
Once again, I was plagued by technology failure, at about mile 11: my phone died, so music, and run track was gone… ugh… I REALLY need to get a new battery! This has happened at every race this year, I just keep forgetting to get the new battery.
So I finished, posting my best race this year: 2:20:08. Not a PR, but better than my last few races, so I'll take it. At least its a step in the right direction! We got our medals and then passed through to get our snack bags and water and stuff. I went over, sat near the stage, listened to them while I stretched out. They were pretty good.
Headed out to the van, and drove home, thus ending this race season. I’m going to take November off to heal, get my knee looked at. Hopefully there’s nothing really wrong there, I don’t think there is, but, I need to make sure. I’ll start back up training again in December, unless the doctor says otherwise.
I’ve been looking at my race schedule for next season, and am starting to formulate the plan for my “race a month” goal. That’s one of my goals for next year, the other is the 2013 Goofy Race and a Half Challenge. I’ll be looking for registration for that in January of this year, right after the 2012 race is done. There’s a lot of work between then and now, and a friend has put the bug in my ear about the Chicago Ultra next year. I don’t know about the 50M race just yet, but the 50K race is a definite possibility next year!
Until next time, see you on the course!