Saturday, April 30, 2011

My First Official Race Pacing Experience

This is a good example, kids, of why you shouldn't
drink and design a half marathon course.

Up until Friday morning, I was going to be at an aid station for the Thanksgiving Point Half Marathon. I didn't want to run the course because it looked like a confusing maze and I get dizzy easy was short the money needed to sign up. My sister and her husband were running and I felt it would be great to be able to cheer them on.

I never was very good about matching.
Thursday night I received a message from a friend looking for pacers for the race. He had a 1:45, 2:10 and 2:30 finish time available. Having spent the week blaming my lack of running on my shins spent the week recovering, I needed to get a run in before attempting this. By the morning he only had 2:30 left and I would rather slit my wrists felt this pace was too slow for me to hold the whole time. I told him if he had a time closer to 2:00 I would be interested. When I finished my run, I had a message telling me there was a 2:05 open. I accepted.

The price was perfect–FREE! We met Friday night to register, go over some pacing tips and then where we'd meet the next day. Saturday morning, we woke to 2 inches of snow on the ground and overcast skies. We met at the race start, got our signs and made our way to the starting line.

My sign was modified from a faster time. On the front where it has the per minute pace, it says "I Am A White Kenyan." That phrase got a lot of people laughing and seems somewhat ironic.

Makes a father proud! 
My son went in my place to the aid station out of the kindness of his heart  and because he is full of unconditional love toward his dad because I promised I'd buy him replacement ear buds after the race. His station was handing out GU so I told him to save me some. He did!

I finished the race in 2:04:44 and have been invited to participate with the group again. I'm going to spend some time working on my half marathon pace to see if that will also translate into a better marathon time also. It was a fun way to spend a Saturday morning.


  1. I screamed "GO BLAINE" when I saw you, but I wasn't sure if you saw me. It was just after mile five when there was a turnaround and everyone got to see who was i front/behind them.

    Talk about a serious maze!! And could you see if they'll do it in reverse next time so the golf course hills come at the beginning? Thanks =)

    Great job pacing! So cool they asked you to do it again!!

  2. Maybe it was you. I heard someone call my name on the course, but I was constantly looking at my watch to make sure I was on target for the pace. I actually kind of liked the course for the most part. I doubt they'll do it in reverse. Last year, the golf course was within the first two miles of the course and it was awful because no one had spread out yet.

  3. I have never seen those signs you were carrying at a race. I didn't know there was such thing. I'm going to look better next time.