Race #81 – Charlotte RaceFest Half Marathon – Charlotte NC – 04/10/10
The week got off to a little bit of a rocky start. My left little piggy that had roast beef (in layman’s terms, that’s the middle toe on my left foot) was giving me fits every time I ran. On Wednesday I limped into the house after my run and told Linda I’d probably just skip running on Thursday and Friday so my foot would have time to recover enough to run a half marathon on Saturday. Then I thought of something my running guru Jerry Sofley told me while I was limping around after the recent Little Rock Half Marathon. He said that before he ran he always put petroleum jelly on his toes. That seemed a little odd and he didn’t really even explain why a person would grease their piggies before running, but with a couple of shoes full of aching toes I remembered his sage advice and decided to give it a try. After I got out of the shower and dried off on Wednesday night I applied a thin layer of Vaseline to all of my toes, and as soon as I did they felt better! Since then I’ve been a-slippin’ and a-slidin’ in foot comfort nirvana. I was able to run 4 miles on Thursday and another 4 miles on Friday, and then of course the 13.1 miles of today’s half marathon, with nary a sore toe, although everything else on my body now feels like it needs a little grease.
This was my first time running at RaceFest and I was looking forward to it since it’s one of Charlotte’s biggest races of the year, with nearly 3,000 runners in the half marathon and 10k combined. It was the coldest morning in the last few weeks with temperatures in the upper 30s at race time, but the combination of running and the spring sunshine warmed things up pretty quickly once the race got started. As I’ve been doing for the past few months, I gradually built my heart rate up to the 162-166 range then tried to stay in that zone throughout the race. That method works pretty well for me but my speed changes depending whether I’m going uphill, downhill, or running on level ground, and I think it can get a little annoying to some of the people who I pass going downhill, only to have them pass me back on the next uphill, but it seems to average out pretty well at the end.
It’s the last weekend before April 15th, my traditional weekend to finally get my income taxes done, so I need to stifle myself, but before I do, I should mention the age group awards were really good for this race. I was first in my age group and my award was a New Balance NBx Component Jacket (Retail $99.99) with a special Charlotte RaceFest inscription. Second place winners received technical long-sleeved shirts and third place winners received running hats similarly inscribed. All three awards were really nice compared to a lot of what I’ve come to expect for age group awards.