Race Report: Red, White & Boom! Half Marathon

I was in Minneapolis this July to visit family and hike the 260-mile Superior Hiking Trail. Before we left for that journey we had a chance to run the Red, White & Boom! half marathon through Minneapolis.

My best race performance to date is still a half I ran in Colorado last Fall (1:29), and I had hopes that with the lower elevation I would be able to hit a new PR at that distance. But in the days before the race, the organizers emailed out alerts that the weather conditions on race morning were going to be less than ideal.

It ended up being about 80F at 80% humidity, not something running in Colorado has trained me for. I’ve also been suffering from some burnout since my last race, which has resulted in neglect of my long runs. But instead of adjusting my goal pace significantly, I decided to do the first mile at 8:00/mile then accelerate during the rest of the first half (mostly uphill) while I was still feeling good and hope that the nice gradual downhill on the second half would be enough to pull me through the finish.

elevation profile
Elevation profile (the red line is the 5K course)

I started out exactly as I planned and felt good up to about the 10K mark. And then I felt suddenly like I had no energy whatsoever. I’m a heavy sweater in any conditions, but on this course I was soaked to saturation and my shoes were splushing with every step for most of the race because of all the sweat that was dripping off my shorts and legs into them. I willed myself to jog the nice downhill parts, stopping to drink and walk at each aid station, and then walked much of the last two miles as everyone I had passed in the first miles ran past me.

Official splits
Location Race Time Pace Between

Finish

1:49:50

10:43

11.5M

1:32:42

8:52

6.55M

48:50

7:22

1M

7:59

7:59

So not the most well-executed half marathon I’ve ever run, but I still had fun in a humbling sort of way. My biggest regret is that there were hot dogs at the finish area, but I was not feeling well enough to eat one.

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