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April 15th: Marathon Training, Newport Half Marathon

Great run with Chris today. We beat my previous time by nearly 6 minutes.

The temperature was cool - at close to 50 degrees and great for running. It was foggy and there was not much for views. Chris was smarter than me again and brought throw away warm up gear. Although, I convinced him to try to stash a sweater and get it back at the end of the race - which we did.

We stayed at a local hotel, since the run meant a lot to us and we wanted to avoid a long morning drive. He and I both got up early and had a good breakfast. Oatmeal for him and a banana, cashew, berries, and honey smoothie for me that I had made the day before.

Chris’ goal was to stay with the 1 hour-50 min pacer. He and I agreed that I would try to keep pace with him and let him go if needed. I had my doubts about improving on my time, since last year I did really well to accomplish 1:54:47. I was not sure that I could improve on that.

We had the pacer in front of us then caught up. After a couple of miles, we passed the pacer and kept him behind us or equal.

At about 6 miles, I realized that I did not start the RaceJoy app for my wife to track me. So, I started it. Unfortunately, it started me as if I had just started. I had to send her texts to let her know that I was at 6 miles, then 7 miles, etc. It’s challenging to text while running with a phone that gets sweaty and starts not to work. I had to give up after 11 miles and could not let her know that I passed 12 and 13.

For more nutrition, just prior to the run, I had a banana. During the run, I had a date and hydrated with Gatorade in my Camelback for a change, instead of water with Nuun. That worked perfectly. I felt good the entire way. The Gatorade is sweet though. So, I needed a lot of cold water to refresh at the finish line.

At about 9 miles, we were running with the pacer equal to us and started sharing stories. His name was Clay. He owned a dog running business. He was the same pacer Chris stayed with last year.

At about 12 miles, I remembered it was where my heart rate was maximum last year - near the mansions. It peaked at 201 per my Garmin Watch and the highest that I have recorded, since having a heart rate monitor. This year, I kept it steady, and it maximized at only 162 bpm. The consistent training has been paying off. Also, adding in high intensity workouts one to three times per week has benefits.

Chris and I were happy that we were able to stick together the entire run. Mostly, I had improved enough to do a better job at keeping up with his fast feet and competitive spirit.

For recovery, I did not need much. I good hot shower back at the hotel, had some good food and a nice drive home. Driving a race or hard training is a bit of a challenge, since some sleep sometimes would feel better.

We had a great day. It was an accomplishment and a good step towards the Providence Marathon in three weeks.

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