Thursday, February 2, 2012

Race Report: NYRR Manhattan Half Marathon

I can’t believe I can be saying things like this now, but the 2012 Manhattan Half was my fourth. This particular race is interesting because the weather can vary quite a bit. In the four times I’ve run it, it’s been 13, 35ish, 13, and this year somewhere in the high twenties or low thirties. The biggest difference, though, between this time and any of the previous three years is that was snowing something fierce the entire time. Plus four or five hours beforehand. The weather got so bad that NYRR decided to turn it into a fun run and not time or score it. NYRR president Mary Wittenberg tweeted that the NYRR crew had been attempting to shovel for four hours before they decided to call it. I guess I could have seen this as a bad thing but I really didn’t. There were a few inches of snow on the ground for the whole race so I wouldn’t have PRed or even come close whether it was timed or not.

When all was said and done, it was a tough race but a pretty cool experience. Even though inclement weather never helps me accomplish any goals, it does create a unique running experience. The 2009 marathon tune-up, for example. It was raining all three and a half hours I was out there running. Chafing aside, it was kind of exhilarating. That’s sort of how I felt during this half marathon, though I would say I felt more badass than exhilarated. I found myself scraping snow/ice crust off my eyelashes every two miles or so. In my opinion, that’s a cool story no matter how you slice it.

I’d approximate my finishing time at 2:10-2:11. The mile markers didn’t have clocks nearby like they normally do, so it was quite difficult to gauge what was happening during the race. What I know is that the clock read 2:12 and change when I crossed the finish line and it did take a minute or two for me to cross the start. So I can only estimate from there.

Before knowing anything about what the weather conditions would look like, I’d hoped to run it right around 2 hours. Not under, but not more than a few minutes over, either. Did I accomplish this? No, no I did not. But all things considered, I’m happy with the result. If there’s anything to be learned from my history with this race, it is that I’ll be back for the 2013 Manhattan Half Marathon.

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