Shamrock Half Marathon (1:25.29)

Shamrock half marathon in summary can be known as all of the following races (for me).

The race with the most friends.


The race with the most side fives.

Side fives for everyone!

The race where one of my best friends depanced me and I made it to the start with one minute to go.


The race that I zoned out the most.  Was this really a half marathon, I don’t remember? 

I think those are all of the one line summaries I can think of.

Let’s get to the actual race recap though.  Due to my phone deleting about 90% of my entire iphone photos and contents I have to rely on other people’s photos.  (I’m still trying to figure out what is going on with that). Thank goodness there are a few.

I got to the race an hour before the start.  While walking to the starting line I was trying to connect with one of my best friends Theresa.  I finally met her at the baggage check and starting line.  I was lucky she stood in line for the porta potty with me.  At exact 6:55 am I realized that there was no way I would make it to the front of the line before 7 nor would I make it to the start before the gun went off.  I still had all my clothes on and was 9 people in front of me in line.

Thank you to the very kind lady who let me quickly go to the front of the line and use the restroom.  I hope I can find out who it was and personally thank you, it was so nice! I will not be able to thank you enough and I hope we are able to connect at some point.  While standing in line, Theresa quickly de-panced me and with my runderwear ready I hopped the fence and was there approximately one minute (if that) before the race went off  (that sounds like an epic youtube video).  It gave me hope that maybe I could be hurdler without breaking something.

I began running with Mike.  (someone I normally run the majority of VA Beach races with…he is slightly faster than me).  We caught up on life and just chatted for a mile or so.  We logged the first mile at 6:40.  I wasn’t feeling great but not awful either.

Mike and I post race.

Mile 2-3 were somewhat blurry and I logged a 6:27 and 6:31 mile.  I chatted with a few racers, sponged off the energy of the crowd and just kept running.  I was able to chat with someone who said they knew me from the internet.  She later (I believe please let me know!!  went to break 1:25.).

Oh look friends!
Oh look friends!

All of a sudden I looked down realized we were at mile 5.  (This never happens and half marathons are normally a mile by mile race for me).  I hit mile 5 at 32:40.  From mile 4-6 there is a gradual uphill.  Nothing crazy but it’s a slight uphill.  I honestly wish I had something exciting or eventful to report but I don’t.  Both miles were 6:27.  I chatted on and off with fellow runners around me.

Mile 7-10 were on the base.  I was running with a pack of people (both male and female) and together we were like a cluster of wind blockers.  It was windy on that stretch.  (But to be fair we had a tailwind at the start).  I found the race to be windy but nowhere near as much as last year.  It wasn’t too bad.

I hit mile 10 at 1:05.15.  I changed my goal to breaking 1:26 at that point.  I didn’t really do any calculations, I just thought that seemed like a good goal.  I really struggled the final 3 miles.  I didn’t feel great and I just wanted it to be over.  I don’t really have a sappy story about how I overcome the difficulties but I just kept counting down the minutes.  Tick tick tick.  (Photo credit thanks to Amelia)


Mile 11 tick tick tick. 6:31  Hitting mile 11 is my favorite because I know I have less than 15 minutes to go.  In some home workout DVD or P90X I did they say “You can do anything for 15 minutes).  It’s always stuck.

Mile 12 tick tick tick. 6:31

No really...side fives for everyone.
No really…side fives for everyone.

I began to see some Oiselle teammates at 12.5 that really lifted my spirits.  I was able to capture some side fives and then just focused on the last half mile.  One woman passed me in the final home stretch.


I always hate the last .3  of shamrock because it’s on the boardwalk and you can see the finish line is about .3.  It’s a solid 2-3 minutes staring at the finish line.  I saw Mollie, my dad and then crossed the finish line.


Finish line yet?
Finish line yet?

I crossed at 21st woman and 100th overall.  After I finished this race I felt okay.  (After I finished Lake Effect I thought I might peel over).


Though I went the same time as the Lake Effect, this race was different on many different levels (indicating I’m making progress).

  1. At Lake Effect, I felt amazing.  I felt great the entire race.  At Shamrock I didn’t feel great.  At all.
  2. At Lake Effect my mile splits bounced around from 6:15 to 6:40.  At Shamrock my mile splits stayed very consistent between 6:27-6:29 (except for the first mile).

Similarities: Both were windy but not awful.  The race conditions were not bad in either race.  Lake Effect was little more flat, a little long of a course but Shamrock was a little more hilly and windy.

In summary I am happy with a consistent half marathon time.  Everyone wants a PR but it was not my day.  I know my fitness level is a bit faster than this right now so we shall see next time.  I’m happy with this time and happy with the friends and family I saw (and wish I had gotten to see more people).  Thank you everyone for your support.

Edit to add:  I received an email with the official time saying I finished in 1:25.29…so 2 seconds faster than Lake Effect.

Questions for you:

1.       Have you ever run the same time before?

2.       Do you like out and back courses or big loop courses?